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May 2, 2008

Pre-arranged appointments work for holiday show

The inaugural City Break 2006 event held recently in Helsinki, Finland, was hailed as a success by exhibition director Mark Walsh with over 500 city break specialist companies from 33 different countries attending.

The key was that the show was based on a programme of pre-arranged appointments linking exhibitors directly with visitors.

“We have had a fantastic response to this event from both exhibitors and buyers alike. Breaking away from the usual trade show approach with this tried and tested workshop style format we have clearly reinvigorated the trade show system,” said Walsh.

Launched in conjunction with the European Cities Tourism (ECT) annual summer conference, City Break will take place annually in June prior to the ECT event and will be moving location each year. City Break 2006 brought together key European suppliers with international City Break outbound operators all under one roof.

Exhibitor Anthony Bright from Goteborg & Co said: “The event has given us the chance to meet buyers we do not normally come into contact with. The interest shown in new regions and destinations by the event buyers will hopefully, in the long term, generate new business to our region.”

Meanwhile, buyer, David Leitch from EasyJet.com, commented: “This was our first foray into this style of event and it has proved extremely useful from a networking point of view and has opened up valuable negotiations for us with several tourism authorities.”

The two-day event hosted 200 exhibiting companies showcasing products and destinations to pre-qualified international hosted buyers including groups from established and emerging markets such as Japan, China, Russia and India.

The destination for City Break 2007 will be announced in July.

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