LONDON, 21 September 2020: Reed Exhibitions, the organiser of the prestigious International Luxury Travel Mart Cannes scheduled for 7 to 10 December, has cancelled the event until 2021 according to a press statement issued at the weekend.
Last week, the World Travel Market London announced it was adopting a hybrid format for the November trade show due to convene, while social media chatter suggests trade shows in Southeast Asia scheduled for January and February could face the same fate or be cancelled outright. Destinations are not opening up fast enough to provide assurances to meeting organisers that their events can take place in the first quarter of 2021.
Reed Exhibitions announced it was rolling out virtual ILTM editions targeting audiences in the Asia Pacific, the Middle East and Africa and the Americas to fill the gap.
“Named the ILTM World Tour …will compensate for the postponed ILTM events in 2020 and provide an environment for international luxury travel brands and regional buyer communities to virtually meet to connect and build their businesses,” the press statement explained.
“We know that virtual events will never replace our love to meet and share stories in person, we know right now that what counts the most is getting business lined up for 2021. We cannot predict the timing of when growth will come back, but we can be ready for whenever it happens,” said ILTM Portfolio Director Alison Gilmore.
ILTM World Tour begins with sunrise in the Asia Pacific (17 to 19 November), followed by Europe, the Middle East and Africa (23to 25 November) and finally crossing the Atlantic to focus on North and South America (1to 3 December).
All participating suppliers will have the opportunity to consider whether they wish to do business in their core markets or also discover new ones. A luxury travel brand from Europe that wants to meet with Asia Pacific buyers would select the virtual event during the first week that will run from 17 to 19 November and arrange appointments during that buyer’s time zone.
Similarly, if any supplier is looking to meet with buyers from Europe, Middle East and Africa, they would select week two from 23 to 25 November, and if they are exploring the buyer community in North and South America, it would be week three and 1 to 3 December.