Online travel sales in Asia will grow about 90 per cent over the next 10 years according to industry experts, with China, India, Indonesia and Vietnam among those destinations leading the way.
According to exhibitors of the inaugural ITB Asia event, the new B2B travel trade show to be held in Singapore, October 22 to 24, a majority of the cyber sales are expected to come from current customers aged up to 25 as they gain more spending power over the next decade.
“There is going to be a huge increase in online travel and many global players have recognised the economic potential of the market, as well as the importance of maintaining service quality,” says Neelu Singh, chief operating officer of India based Ezeego One Travel & Tours Limited.
According to the Pacific Asia Travel Association, regional tourism is expected to soar with nearly 500 million visitors arriving by 2010, generating $4.6 trillion in revenue.
The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) and global management consultancy, Accenture, expect the hospitality industry to be worth $15 trillion in the next 10 years. Hotels now have to keep up with the growing competition by aggressively embracing technology.
“It [technology] provides them not only with a competitive edge but also helps to protect their assets, brand equity and drives innovation,” says Oliver Winzer, regional director of IT Asia, Amadeus Hospitality Business Group, a global technology and distribution solutions provider for the travel industry.
“In a world which is literally run by technology, it is imperative that one sustains the growth and invests intelligently to generate better yields and revenue,” he said.
ITB Asia will have a Travel Technology pavilion and delegates are also being offered preferential rates to attend the Web In Travel (WIT) travel technology event which takes place in Suntec Singapore. The key theme is how technology will change the way we communicate and travel in the future.
“Most successful travel companies now embrace innovative technology solutions and online sales,” says Dr Martin Buck, director of Messe Berlin (Singapore), the organisers of ITB Asia. “Our role is to convene a great travel trade event that shows exhibitors and travel buyers how to get their share of the future of travel.”
ITB Asia will cater to the three major sectors of the travel industry: holiday travel, business travel, and the meetings, or ‘MICE’ sector. About 5,000 members of the travel industry are expected to attend the premiere of ITB Asia. Floor space is already sold out with exhibitors confirmed from 42 countries.