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A decade of Connecting Regional Tourism

Shaping the Future of Travel: Asian Tourism Industry to Converge at the 10th ATF Dhaka

June Mukherjee, Dhaka, 18-09-2023


The capital city of Bangladesh, the vibrant city of Dhaka is once again gearing up to host a momentous event that has become a staple in the world of tourism and travel calendar for Asia - the 10th Asian Tourism Fair (ATF) Dhaka. Over the past nine years, ATF Dhaka has established itself as a premier platform for the convergence of travel enthusiasts, industry professionals, and stakeholders of the region, all united by their love for exploration and adventure. This year's edition, scheduled from September 21 to 23, promises to be even grander as it celebrates its milestone 10th anniversary.

The ATF Dhaka is an annual event that brings together National Tourism Organizations (NTOs), travel agents, tour operators, Destination Management Companies (DMCs), airlines, embassies, and Bangladesh's travel associations under one roof. The congregation not only fosters collaboration and partnerships but also acts as a catalyst for the growth of the tourism industry in Asia and beyond.

The theme of ATF Dhaka remains "Connecting Regional Tourism". It underlines the importance of forging connections and alliances across borders to boost tourism, exchange cultural experiences, and promote economic growth. By facilitating cross-border interactions and highlighting the diverse offerings of various countries, ATF Dhaka encourages visitors to explore new destinations and immerse themselves in the beauty of distinct cultures.

As the biggest travel fair in Bangladesh, ATF Dhaka provides a comprehensive overview of the tourism landscape. Visitors can expect a plethora of exhibits displaying enticing travel destinations, unique experiences, and special travel packages. From bustling metropolises to serene beaches, from historical sites to modern attractions - every facet of travel is be represented, allowing attendees to plan their dream getaways all in one place as the fair opens for the public on the last day.

The ATF Dhaka's venue, the Bangabandhu International Conference Centre, is an iconic location that echoes the grandeur of the event. The fair is being supported by esteemed entities like the Ministry of Civil Aviation and Tourism, the Bangladesh Government, the Bangladesh Tourism Board, and Biman Bangladesh, among others. These associations signify the government's commitment to promoting the tourism industry and displaying Bangladesh as an emerging travel destination.

Hotel Inter-Continental Dhaka has joined hands as the hospitality partner for this year and will be hosting guests as well as the awards function cum gala dinner event. Known for its luxurious accommodations and impeccable service, the partnership adds important value of comfort and elegance to the overall experience. Having the opportunity to collaborate with ATF Dhaka is a testament to Hotel Inter-Continental's commitment to supporting and nurturing the tourism industry.

ATF Dhaka boasts participation from a multitude of countries, emphasizing its regional reach and influence. With the collective efforts of these countries, the fair creates an environment conducive to networking, learning, and collaboration, driving innovation in the travel sector.

As visitors, exhibitors, and enthusiasts from all corners of the world gather in Dhaka to celebrate the 10th Asian Tourism Fair, there is a shared sense of excitement and anticipation for the years of adventure that lie ahead. The event is not just a celebration of the past but a blueprint for the future of tourism, where connections are forged, cultures are shared, and horizons are expanded.

Inclusive Sustainability Takes Center Stage:

Sustainable tourism, often referred to as responsible or eco-tourism, has emerged as a critical agenda within the global travel sphere. The impact of mass tourism on the environment and local communities has been a cause for concern, and the industry is making conscious efforts to address these challenges. ATF Dhaka acknowledges the urgency of sustainability and highlights its significance through dedicated exhibits, seminars, and discussions at the concurring Bangladesh Tourism Development Summit 2023.
In an era where the global travel industry is redefining itself to align with environmental responsibility and social consciousness, the 10th Asian Tourism Fair (ATF) Dhaka is poised to shine a spotlight on two pivotal pillars of modern tourism - Sustainable Tourism and Community-Based Tourism (CBT).

Community-Based Tourism (CBT) is another integral aspect that ATF Dhaka is championing. This approach emphasizes the involvement of local communities in the tourism process, ensuring they have a stake in the benefits and growth that tourism can bring.

ATF Dhaka is expected to display CBT initiatives through a Responsible Tourism Clinic with interactive displays, workshops, and storytelling sessions. These platforms will shed light on successful community-led tourism projects, emphasizing their positive impact on livelihoods, infrastructural development, and the preservation of intangible heritage.

Personalization and Tailored Experiences:

The diversity of Asian tourists' preferences is a treasure trove waiting to be uncovered. From bustling metropolises to tranquil landscapes, culinary delights to historical gems, each traveller’s desires are unique. Mapping these choices empowers travel industry professionals to curate personalized experiences that resonate with individual preferences. This personalization not only heightens customer satisfaction but also fuels a stronger emotional connection between the traveller and the destination.
ATF Dhaka serves as a hub where these preferences are brought to the forefront. Exhibitors, tour operators, and hospitality partners gather to display an array of offerings, allowing tourists to interact with options that align with their interests. By understanding these choices, stakeholders can tailor their offerings, crafting experiences that mirror the desires of their clientele.

Predictive Insights and Industry Growth:

Mapping travel choices extends beyond the immediate benefit of enhancing individual experiences. It also lays the foundation for predictive insights that drive industry growth. By analysing patterns and trends in Asian tourists' preferences, industry experts can anticipate upcoming demands and trends. This forward-looking approach aids in strategic planning, product development, and destination marketing.
The ATF Dhaka fair serves as an incubator for these insights. As industry players gather to share ideas and innovations, they gain a comprehensive understanding of evolving travel preferences. This knowledge equips them to shape strategies that not only cater to current demands but also forecast the ever-changing needs of Asian tourists.

June Mukherjee, Dhaka, 18-09-2023

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