The Spring 2008 Travel Mart, a promotional project of the “VISIT JAPAN CAMPAIGN” by the Japanese government, was held on June 19th and 20th at the Pacifico Yokohama Conference Center in Yokohama City. Tanabe City Kumano Tourism Bureau was a member of the event with the goal to introduce Tanabe City and the Kumano region to International Travel Agencies.
It is a very large event with approximately 100 travel agencies from overseas and 250 domestic agencies promoting their tourism assets. The individual business meetings were a short 15 minutes each because of time restrictions. Because of this, the event venue had a very intense atmosphere. Using information handouts, sellers tried to make the most of the 15 minute opportunity to introduce their product and the buyers were keen to seek new business possibilities.
Among the agencies that the Tanabe City Kumano Tourism Bureau met, an Australian travel agency, which deals with cultural experience and nature tours, showed the largest interest in Tanabe’s information.
The buyer said that “We are very interested in new destinations such as world heritage pilgrimage sites, with rich history, culture of spirituality, and Onsens. If we can make a tour of Tanabe City, it would have lots of potential as a travel destination for Australians who are fond of the outdoors.”
It was a very busy Travel Mart but the reaction from travel agencies was very positive. We are looking forward to work with those that we had the pleasure of meeting in Yokohama.