MEETING POINT – AITF
The 18th Azerbaijan International Travel and Tourism Fair, AITF 2019, starts on the 4th of April. The exhibition will be held at Baku Expo Center and will continue until the 6th of April. Traditionally, the exhibition brings together representatives of the tourist market from various countries, national and regional tourist organisations and government agencies.
The difference in this year’s exhibition is that now it will not share the venue with the Caucasian International Hospitality Exhibition Everything for Hotels, Restaurants and Supermarkets, HOREX Caucasus. After conducting marketing research and taking into account numerous requests by exhibitors, the organisers have decided to hold HOREX Caucasus in parallel with the exhibitions on the topics of food and packaging.
Thus, becoming an exhibition exclusively focused on tourism, AITF 2019 will highlight outgoing and incoming tourism, as well as the development of event tourism - MICE industry. Given the increased inflow of tourists and the holding of various major international events in Azerbaijan, including the expansion of international relationships, the relevance of this topic is indisputable. The exhibition, being a driving force for the development of this area, is a link between the tourist agencies, airlines and end users, and is a meeting place for local and foreign experts and government agencies.
“The whole world. One exhibition”, is the slogan of AITF 2019 which will welcome 189 companies and organisations of 17 different countries from around the world. With the support of their national travel agencies and embassies, national groups from Belarus, Bulgaria, Georgia, the Dominican Republic, Italy, China, Morocco, Thailand, Turkey and the Czech Republic are taking part in the exhibition. Rogashka Slatina (Slovenia), Stavropol Region (Russia), collective stand of Odesa, Truskovets and Lviv (Ukraine regions), Izmir (Turkey) are participating with a regional stand. For the first time at AITF Maku Free Trade and Industrial Zone of Iran will demonstrate tourism opportunities of the region. Representatives of resorts and health spas, travel companies and hotel chains will work at the national and regional stands.
In order to stand out among the other participating countries, and to present their destination more vividly, the Dominican Republic Ministry of Tourism has decided to sponsor the AITF 2019 exhibition.
The exhibition plays an important role, representing Azerbaijan as an attractive destination for travellers. The renewed tourism brand of Azerbaijan is represented by this year’s debutant, the Azerbaijan Tourism Bureau. A wide range of proposals for tourism in Azerbaijan and abroad will be reflected by the Azerbaijan Tourism Association (AZTA), which brings together travel companies, hotels, and health spas from Azerbaijan at its stand. Over the course of three days, AITF 2019 participants will demonstrate the full range of their travel services, covering both the summer and winter tourist seasons with their offers.
The AITF 2019 exhibition will highlight a number of sectors, such as sports tourism, IT in tourism, hunting and fishing, and others. A special sector of the AITF exhibition, Medical and Health Tourism, which has already become a tradition, will also be widely represented by health resorts, wellness and
SPA centers from Bulgaria, Republic of Belarus, Russia (Stavropol Region), Slovenia (Rogashka Slatina) and other countries.
AITF 2019 is also an extensive business programme. During each day of the exhibition various meetings, seminars and presentations will be held.
According to a decree by President Mr. Ilham Aliyev, the year 2019 has been declared the Year of Nasimi. Being the creator of the first masterpieces of Azerbaijani poetry, Nasimi played a significant role in the development of native literature. He is called the father of the Azerbaijani divan and the founder of the Azerbaijani literary language. On this occasion, the theme of creativity Nasimi will be extensively presented at the exhibition. All 3 days of the exhibition, guests will have the opportunity to take a "Journey to the history and work of Nasimi", thereby honouring the great poet’s memory and getting to know the rich culture of Azerbaijan. The project will be organised with the support of Libraff bookstore network.
According to a number of foreign experts, the capital of Azerbaijan, Baku, is today one of the ten most attractive MICE directions. This is evidenced by the large number of business, sports and entertainment events that have already been held, and those that are planned for the future. These positive trends will be reflected in the discussion on “Tourism in Azerbaijan: New Horizons”, which will be held on the 4th of April at Baku Expo Centre with the organisational support of the American Chamber of Commerce in Azerbaijan, AMCAM. Participants in the round table discussions will be specialists from the tourism industry and professional event organisers. During this event, there will be an opportunity to discuss the topical issues of the industry to further optimise the joint work and provision of first-class services. The project is sponsored by Baku Convention Center.
A platform for B2B meetings where representatives of local travel companies aimed at finding partners in the field of tourism and recreation will meet with foreign exhibitors will start on the 5th of April.
Visitors can see the world through the eyes of travellers and ask questions on the 5th of April during the seminar “Around the World with Travelers”. This is the new project from organisers where travel bloggers Irada Gadirova (Ecotourism as a new tourist destination of Azerbaijan), Orkhan Aslanov (Traveling in photos), Farid Novruzi (Unique places of our planet) and Emin Dostiyary (How to combine business with pleasure: Business travel) will share their travel experiences, useful tips and fascinating stories. The event is open for all exhibition visitors.
Also, as part of AITF, an exhibition of photographs of the famous traveller Farid Novruzi will be presented to visitors. The exhibition includes more than 40 original photographs from different parts of the world.
On the last day of the exhibition, on the 6th of April, the “Travel Mood Festival” will be organised in the hall of Baku Expo Center for visitors and exhibitors. Foreign participants will present their culture through various types of art - dance, art and cultural performances, thereby adorning the final day of the exhibition with bright performances and a good mood.
Thus, the AITF exhibition will once again confirm its importance as a unique platform for meetings of the leading players in the tourism industry.
Each year the professional representatives of the industry anticipate this event, where they can expand the geography of sales, learn about the latest news and trends in the industry, as well as find new partners and customers. AITF is not only the largest exhibition of the tourism sector in the region, it is also a celebration of the culture, new experiences, opportunities and friendship.
AITF is held with the support of the State Tourism Agency of the Republic of Azerbaijan and Azerbaijan Tourism Board, Azerbaijan Tourism Association (AZTA), Azerbaijan Export and Investment Promotion Foundation and Small and Medium Business Development Agency of the Republic of Azerbaijan, National Confederation of The Entrepreneurs (Employers) Organizations of Azerbaijan Republic (AEC). AITF receives endorsement from international bodies such as the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) and the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA). Exhibition is recognised by UFI (the global association of the exhibition industry). The partners of AITF in 2019 are the tour operator Greenwich Travel Club, Qafqaz Hotels and Resorts and Boulevard Hotel. Child Zone partner is "Bagcam" Network of Kindergartens.