Which highlights to be expected at ITB Berlin Convention 2019?
The ITB Berlin Convention 2019 focuses on four key topics:
The ITB Berlin Convention takes on topics that will impact the global travel and tourism industry and bring sustainable changes in the coming years. The ITB Convention analyzes market trends and highlights best practice examples. It acts as the global travel and tourism industry’s compass in dynamic, challenging times. The ITB Convention is also a platform for exchange for decision-makers in the areas of tourism economics, politics and science.
Today global tourism is at a crossroads: Continuing down the beaten path is highly questionable. The threatening collapse of the world’s climate, fragile transportation systems that are unsuitable for the future, intensifying overtourism conflicts and grave changes in customer demands present the global tourism industry with a variety of existential challenges.
The hot summer in the northern hemisphere and the rousing report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) are unequivocal: “Business as usual” will lead to the abyss. Which measures are particularly effective for containing global warming and climate change, and how will they impact the global travel and tourism industry? The key question is: Considering the 1.5 degree target, will we still be able to travel in the future the way we have up to now? Leading global scientists explain the status quo, as well as potential measures, in keynote sessions. Tourism policy and economics experts discuss solutions and present best practice approaches for Environmental Sustainability.
Transportation systems are an essential component of the tourism industry. Today's transportation systems are not sustainable: resource consumption, noise and pollution, congestion and wasted time – the collapse of traffic in large cities all over the world seems inevitable. New technologies and digitalization are paving the way for revolutionary means of transport and new business models in both private and business segments. Prototypes in the testing phase reveal: A revolution in both air and ground travel is taking place – and its effects will soon become ubiquitous. Fully-automatic flying passenger drones, electric cars, autonomous electric minibuses and sharing services will soon be suitable for the masses. And on the plus side, travel will become easier, cheaper, more luxurious and more sustainable. The ITB Convention will discuss Future Mobility in tourism destinations with the creators of innovative means of transport and tourism ministers.
More and more Overtourism conflicts have recently led to a number of pilot projects. The ITB Convention will take stock: What measures have proven successful and how can digital technologies be used to combat overtourism? Can the initial findings on overcrowded cities also be applied to rural destinations with tourist attractions? In addition, there is a growing realization that “keeping it small” doesn’t really help. We need a completely new destination management system, Destination Management 2.0.
Threefold Change in Customer Demands
In addition, we are experiencing a Threefold Change in Customer Demands: Customers are becoming more demanding, more individual and more political. First, luxury is understood quite differently today from how it was in the past. Destination managers, hotels and carriers have to meet high immaterial luxury demands – “bling bling” went out long ago. In several sessions, the ITB Berlin Convention will present current findings on luxury demands, forward-looking business models and "lessons learned" from luxury brand management. Second, in-destination services are experiencing a revolution. New tourists want custom-made experiences at their destination. Market-leading travel providers are pushing into this previously untapped market segment; they are digitizing offers and integrating them into online platforms and package tours. The new ITB segment, Technology, Tours & Activities (TTA), reveals this trend. Third, tourists are becoming more political: Attitudes towards regional politics are becoming an important travel decision criterion. Exclusive empirical studies for the ITB show how political tourists have become, and discussions with ambassadors reveal how political decision-makers are adjusting.