The bargain comes with strings attached, however
FITUR is the leading event for the industry
This year, Madrid is planning not only to host its annual FITUR (International Tourism Fair) but to also be one of its biggest stars. The event, taking place 19-23 May at Ifema, is looked forward to and promoted as a catalyst for reactivation of the tourist industry after it suffered a major crisis during the coronavirus pandemic. The organizers claim it as the biggest trade fair its kind on a global scale.
The idea is to present a new brand of the Spanish capital, called Greater Madrid – an image that seeks to expand beyond the borders of the city to include the larger Madrid Region, on one hand. But, on the other, it also seeks to affirm an idea of the place as a multi-functional destination that offers practically everything to visitors, even things they might have not expected.
What is next for the Spanish capital after the Covid era?
The organizers promise impressive attendance numbers with 165 participating countries, more than 11 thousand exhibiting companies and 261 thousand attendants. It is as big a forum for all things tourism as one could possibly imagine.
From its own space in pavilion 9 C03, shared with the Region of Madrid, the city will promote, together with the main representatives of the Madrid tourism sector, the attractions and innovations that make the capital a leading urban destination in the world.
The Madrid stand at FITUR has been made taking into account all the measures of responsible production and consumption, incorporating 100% recyclable materials and native decorative plants. In addition, it is fully accessible and lacks architectural barriers.
It has several differentiated spaces such as a stage, meeting room and professional meetings, 14 thematic areas and a photocall that shows the contrast between the historical and palatial heritage of the Madrid destination and its modern infrastructures, which also highlights the relevance of its natural spaces.
To guarantee the safety of the attendees and in favour of sustainability and digitization, Madrid has eliminated all materials and resources in paper format from its stand and the information will be provided only through screens and QR codes.
Improving engagement with tourists to the city
As an example of some of the major tourism projects that the City Council's Tourism Delegate Area is working on, FITUR will be the stage in which the new concept of tourist information in the capital, called the Experience Planning Center, will be shown. This is a digital transformation project undertaken by the City Council through its new Strategic Tourism Plan, based on the creation of personalized plans and experiences that combine big data with a more human character, offering proposals adapted to each profile of leisure, gastronomy and culture.
Another novelty at the Madrid stand will be Pichi, the robot with a heart, which offers the coolest plans in the city thanks to its artificial intelligence. It is a new member of the City Council's team of informants who will help in the work of publicizing the best that the capital has to offer.
After its presence at FITUR, Pichi will be available to visitors at the Casa de la Panadería tourism centre and will have its own website, called ‘Pichi’s Plans’ on which it will offer two attractive suggestions each month for both locals and national and international travellers who want to discover the city.
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