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Travellers look for ethical brands


DUBAI, 26 October 2021: Hotels, airlines and resort destinations will have to live and breathe their brand values, says RX Global, organiser of Arabian Travel Market (ATM), claiming 2022 could witness a resurgence in brand-conscious travellers.

It based the assertion on commentary it received from delegates attending its 2021 in-person and virtual seminars about responsible tourism.

“The feedback we received has enabled us to identify a particular profile of traveller, that now actively looks for ethical brands to follow and wants to see tangible evidence of that brand practising what it preaches.

“This potential vertical shows a combination of characteristics attributed to outdoor adventurers, wellness, eco-tourists, digital nomads on ‘workcations’, experiential tourists and socially aware travellers,” said Arabian Travel Market exhibition director ME Danielle Curtis.

“Naturally, we will be showcasing this emerging trend during our 2022 hybrid event, which takes place live and in-person at the Dubai World Trade Centre on 8 to 11 May 2022, with a virtual edition on 17 and 18 May 2022.

“Our conference programme for ATM 2022 is still being created, but already we have sessions that will address the challenges facing airlines, hotels and other destinations, in the near future, such as health and safety, technology and equity in health, education, and economic opportunity,” added Curtis.

During our aviation seminars at ATM 2021, experts felt that it would be short-haul leisure breaks, favouring low-cost operators would be the first to recover in the wake of the pandemic. Although that may still seem to be the case, this emerging market segment certainly won’t be confined to one location, will likely choose longer haul destinations and stay over a longer timeframe, interspersed with periods of work.

“The bottom line here is very similar. These tourists will still want to see brands committed to health and safety and tangible evidence of a sustainable strategy such as certification with an independent organisation,” commented Curtis.

To underscore that demand, according to market data on Statista, 81% of 29,349 adults surveyed earlier this year across 30 countries confirmed that they would like to stay in a sustainable resort at least once in the 12 months ahead. Five years ago, only 62% of respondents made the same claim.

Google found that the search term “green hotel” had increased fourfold over the past 18 months in terms of volume. In response to the feedback, Google will now accredit hotels with a green eco-emblem next to their name during a routine search. It will also add details of the property’s specific sustainability policy and procedures, and activities. To qualify, hotels must have their achievements audited by a credible third party.

“This will provide more transparency for potential guests and help to reward hotels with genuine environmental achievements,” said Curtis.

Now in its 29th year and working in collaboration with the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) and Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM), the event, show highlights in 2022 will include, among others, destination summits focused on key source markets Saudi, Russia, China and India.

Travel Forward, the leading global event for travel technology which puts a spotlight on the latest, next-generation technology for travel and hospitality, ATM buyer forums and speed networking events, as well as ARIVAL Dubai @ ATM. Through a series of webinars, this dedicated forum covers current and future trends for tour operators and attractions with a focus on growing business through marketing, technology, distribution, thought leadership and executive-level connections.

ATM 2022 will also host dedicated conference summits on the Global Stage, covering aviation, hotels, sports tourism, retail tourism and a special hospitality investment seminar.

The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), the world’s premier business travel and meetings trade organisation, will once again be participating at ATM. The GBTA will deliver the latest business travel content, research and education to drive the recovery and support growth in business travel.

ATM will play an integral role in Arabian Travel Week, a festival of events dedicated to travel professionals from all over the world, to collaborate and shape the recovery of the Middle East travel industry through exhibitions, conferences, breakfast briefings, awards, product launches and networking events.

Arabian Travel Market (ATM), now in its 29th year, is the leading international travel and tourism event in the Middle East for inbound and outbound tourism professionals. ATM 2021 showcased over 1,300 exhibiting companies from 62 countries across nine halls at Dubai World Trade Centre, with visitors from more than 140 countries over the four days.

Arabian Travel Market is part of Arabian Travel Week. The next in-person event: Sunday 8 to Wednesday 11 May 2022, Dubai World Trade Centre, Dubai   

Arabian Travel Week is a festival of events taking place within and alongside Arabian Travel Market 2022. Providing a renewed focus for the Middle East’s travel and tourism sector, it includes ATM Virtual, ILTM Arabia, Arival Dubai, Influencers’ events and activations, as well as Travel Forward. It also features the ATM Buyer Forums, ATM Speed Networking Events as well as a series of country summits.

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