Muscat: Ministry of Tourism (MoT) recently organised workshops in Paris and Milan for trade partners (tour operators and hotels) through its market-based representatives.
The sessions, which concluded yesterday, are aimed at enhancing cooperation between the international market and Oman, and increasing the number of tourists visiting the Sultanate from these countries.
During the last couple of years, Oman has witnessed consistent growth in the number of visitors from Italy. With 33,915 tourists coming into the country in 2015, there was an increase of 6.5 per cent from the previous year.
The ministry is working towards replicating the same success with the French market, from where 46,520 tourists visited Oman last year.
Officials from MoT, along with nearly 25 representative partners from the tourism industry of Oman, including the Al Bustan Palace–A Ritz Carlton Hotel, Anantara Jabal Akhdar and the Al Baleed Resort Salalah by Anantara, Alila Jabal Akhdar, Muscat Hills, Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort and Spa, Six Senses Zighy Bay, The Chedi Muscat, Arabian Experience, Arabica Orient, Bahwan Tourism, Desert Camels Adventure Tours, Elite Travel and Tourism, Magic Arabia, Muscat Desert Gate, Quality Travel and Tourism, Sand Palm Oman Tours, Smart Travel and Tourism and Tour Oman and some regional airline partners including Oman Air, were present at the workshop.
The audience consisted of local travel agents, tour operators, hotels, airlines and members of the media (bloggers, journalists and travellers).
The 14th edition of the workshop in France saw over 200 tourism professionals gather to understand more about Oman Tourism and get an update on the latest developments on the tourism front. The Tourist Information School has organised a training session on the destination for the travel agents.
The sixth edition of the Italian workshop on tourism included presentations by the partners, which discussed various offerings from Oman. This was followed by one-on-one B-2-B (business to business) meetings between various travel partners, and a networking cocktail dinner.
Speaking about the workshops, Asma Al Hajry, deputy director general, International Tourism Promotions, said, “Europe is a crucial market for Oman and workshops like these provide us with an avenue to showcase what the country has to offer in terms of tourism. We have a unique landscape, our deep-rooted culture and Omani hospitality will give tourists the most authentic Arabia experience. In the previous years, our road shows and exhibitions have met with astounding success and we are sure that this year is no different.”
In addition to participating in international trade shows, the ministry also organises road shows annually to build individual relations with trade partners. In 2015, the Ministry had organised a road show in Brussels, Milan and Paris to highlight Oman’s participation in Expo Milan and also took part in a four-city road show across India (Chennai-Bangalore-New Delhi-Mumbai), and in 2014 the MoT had organised a four-city road show in Germany (Berlin-Dusseldorf-Hamburg-Frankfurt), the Gulf Cooperation Council, and a Europe road show (France-Italy-the Netherlands).