Motaz Othman, M.I.C.E Middle East >>. for the past 20 years, i never missed attending EMITT, The East Mediterranean International Tourism and Travel Fair, year by year EMITT became bigger and bigger, Mrs. Hacer Aydin was behind this success and here is an Interview with Hacer.
Q: As I have been attending EMITT for more than 20 years and also visiting Turkey for more, I really believe that EMITT has played a huge role to put Turkey in the International Tourism map, can you let us know how EMITT support Tourism in Turkey?
A: The growth of EMITT is so much parallel to the growth of the tourism in Turkey. The more Emitt growth; tourism in Turkey grow as the same % and vise verse. 10 years ago, Turkey was not in the list of the most popular destination of the World. When Emitt became the 6th. Biggest travel and tourism Exhibition in the World, Turkey was on the list of the 6th. Popular destination of the World. This is not a coincidence at all. When we are promoting Emitt as an important Exhibition, we are also promoting Turkey as an important tourist destination to the World. On the other hand, we have a Great cooperation with the Tourism Ministry of Turkey and they are so much aware of the importance of Emitt Exhibition, so when they promote Turkey in the mean time they also promote Emitt as an important tourism Exhibition as well. So that is why Emitt and tourism in Turkey growing to parallel to each other.
Q: During EMITT editions, I saw a huge participation from different regions in Turkey, was EMITT the major window for them to promote their regions?
A: Yes it is. Turkey is not a country who has only 3S, (sea, sand and sun). Each and every city of Turkey has their own cultural touristic attraction. Turkey is very rich country when it comes to cultural inheritance. So all the regions of Turkey has an opportunity to promote their own destination as an important cultural touristic attraction to the world and to the consumers. So that is why the number of the visitors of Turkey is increasing every year. You can see many tourists even in the very remote villages of Turkey. The interesting point is, many of those regions were not aware of what cultural richness they had 20 years ago until they participate to Emitt. The more they participated to Emitt, the more they became very much aware of what they have as touristic attractions and they started to promote their cities / regions as touristic destinations. I am very much proud of this result.
Q: In general and during EMITT years, how many countries in total exhibited and how many buyers and nationalities EMITT welcomed?
A: Since Emitt started, over 120 countries participated to Emitt and more than 10.000 buyers took part at Emitt exhibition.
Q: Can I know details and figures about EMITT 2018, visitors (local and International), Exhibitors and Buyers?
A: EMITT 2018, achieved great success with a turnout of 54,364 visitors and 1,065 participants from 85 different countries. With a 55% increase in participants compared to previous years, EMITT signaled that the tourism sector will be on the rise in 2018. 3.379 international visitors attended to Emitt 2018 and top 10 visiting countries are Macedonia,Bulgaria, Iran, North Cyprus,Germany, India, Greece, Azerbaijan, Iraq, Algeria.
The Hosted Buyers Program, in which 600 tour operators from 106 countries took part, drew great interest with more than 7,000 appointments! Like in previous year, the EMITT Tourism Exhibition organized the Hosted Buyers Program this year, as well. Within the scope of the program, which took place with the partnership of TravelShop Turkey, 600 tour operators from 106 countries were hosted. The countries the tour operators came from included: the U.S., Albania, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Belarus, United Arab Emirates, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Algeria, the Czech Republic, Indonesia, Morocco, the Philippines, Palestine, France, Ghana, Guinea, South Africa, Georgia, India, the Netherlands, England, Ireland, Spain, Switzerland, Italy, Cambodia, Canada, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Cyprus, Kosovo, Kuwait, Lebanon, Hungary, Macedonia, Malaysia, Mexico, Egypt, Nepal, Uzbekistan, Pakistan, Poland, Romania, Rwanda, Russia, Singapore, Slovenia, Sri Lanka, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Tanzania, Thailand, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, Oman, Jordan, and Vietnam.
Q: For sure the feedback from Exhibitors is excellent and thats why EMITT is bigger and bigger every year, I know that your management as G.M played a big role, as well the support from the ministry and Turkish Airlines, how would you see EMITT to be more visited by International visitors?
A: Since 1997, every year we participate to at least 10 international travel and tourism exhibitions in the world in order to promote Emitt exhibition and also Turkey. If you ask any buyers that you know in tourism industry they all know about Emitt and as a builder of the show personally me. So it is a long term relationships, working very hard with a lot of passion. Generally speaking if you believe in what you are selling and promoting, you transfer this feeling to the other people too. I believe Turkey is a great touristic destination and Emitt is one of the most important tool to reach the tourism sector in Turkey. It is as simple as that.
Q: If you would like to invite friends to your country Turkey, or you would write an article about Turkey , what would you tell them in One line ?
A: Enjoy the wonderful natural and historical places in Turkey, taste excellent food, meet new friends, feel home and return home with nice memories
Q: How would see Turkey as a Honeymoon destination and which places you recommend for them.
A: Turkey has different alternative honeymoon options, starting from boutique packages (such as Cappadocia) to high exclusive packages. So depending on the budgets of the clients, they can choose any of them. It will still be a dream honeymoon.
Q: Turkey with its central location between North, South and between East and West and with the big role that Turkish Airlines is playing, i believe it is supposed to be in top 5 International countries for Meetings and Conventions and for MICE in general, what do you believe should be done, for example Thailand support each Event organiser through offering return tickets, dinner invitations and some time cash for each confirmed delegate.
A: Turkey is really a central location between East and West by connecting two continent. So who ever would like to contact to Europe from the Eastern part of the world, they have to pass from Turkey. There are a lot to do to get more benefit from out of this position depending on the countries general policy.