This year visitors were offered a record 14,626 deals in over-the-counter sales. When TUR 2012 closed recently organizers say it had registered around 40,000 visits, down 10 per cent on last year. “But in view of the starting point this was still a fairly good figure,” says Per Magnusson, exhibition manager for TUR. “Exhibitors were not as confident this year, particularly due to the debit crisis in several eurozone countries. The show was over 10 per cent smaller than last year reflecting the downturn across the industry. Fewer exhibitors attract fewer visitors – it’s that simple.”
TUR 2012 offered a new, more flexible concept enabling companies to exhibit for a three-hour session in the Global Point lounge. In addition, there were several initiatives to facilitate business meetings and public initiatives including non-stop entertainment and kids’ activities. “We’ve had lots of positive feedback,” says Per Magnusson. “It really feels as if we’re on the right track. It’s fantastic that our deals initiative was so successful! TUR visitors have discovered they can buy trips, hotel rooms and so on at really amazing bargain prices.”
Exhibitors offered a total of 139 different deals, six times as many as last year. Each deal was for a limited number of purchases or tickets – a total of 14,626 offers. Many deals gave discounts of 50 per cent or more, including holidays in Greece, Portugal, Cuba, Kenya, India and Thailand. But Norwegian fjord tours, Åland cruises and sailing trips in the Stockholm archipelago were also going at half price. SJ had the most popular deal of all: a rail ticket to any Swedish destination for just SEK 145. “There was enormous pressure on the stand, with long queues throughout the show. We sold hundreds of tickets – as many as we had time for,” says Margareta Lindén at SJ.
The tour operator Airtours sold around 120 heavily discounted tickets, mainly to the Greek islands. The travel agency chain Resia, which was exhibiting at TUR for the first time, sold over 100 charter holidays in collaboration with Apollo.
Exhibitor comments included:
Bohuslän had the show’s largest stand, with an area of 322 sq.m. “This was the first time we had gathered together the whole of Bohuslän around a common concept,” says Björn Johnson, CEO of Södra Bohuslän Turism. “The forecast is for a record number of visitors this year. The stand was really buzzing!” A number of firms took part, marketing Bohuslän’s gems with typical paraphernalia, such as boats, buoys, jetties and fishing nets. And visitors could sample everything from Smögen prawns and Klädesholmen marinated herring to oysters and the Bohuslän speciality dish ‘äggost’. “Our main target groups were the active family and travel-hungry senior citizens, but also young childless couples. The principal target group on the trade days was the important conference market, with customers invited to the stand,” explains Björn.
Poland had an extra large presence this year, due to this summer’s UEFA European Football Championship. “The show was a perfect prelude to the tourist season,” says Malgorzata Hudyma at the Polish National Tourist Office, which wants to show that Poland can offer more than just football: modern hotels, cultural experiences and beaches – all at a very reasonable price. “At TUR we wanted to target the family and city break segments. It really feels as if we were successful. We had lots of visitors to the stand and made many valuable contacts.”
Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre, www.tur.se