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Breath of fresh air for tourism with Fitur 2022

World’s premier tourism fair returns to Madrid with in-person format

World’s premier tourism fair returns to Madrid with in-person format

The FITUR organizers want to send a message that we need to learn to live with the new reality

The Madrid Tourism Fair (FITUR) is the name of one of the world’s leading professional events in the tourism industry, and its 2022 edition will be held at Ifema (Madrid) on 19-23 January. This year it will be held in-person, despite the ongoing pandemic wave caused by the Omicron variant. With this, the organizers want to send a message of optimism and recovery to the heavily-battered industry.

Events for the professionals and for the general public

Among the 7000 companies and 600 exhibitors who have confirmed their participation are official delegations from 70 countries: 22 will be from Europe, 18 from America, 14 from Africa, 11 from Pacific Asia and 6 from the Middle East. In addition, another 10 countries will participate virtually: 6 from Africa, 3 from Pacific Asia and 1 from the Middle East. There will be also private company representatives from 37 other countries.

Nevertheless, and despite some virtual participation, the goal this year is to restore the real-life nature of the event – which lies at the core of what tourism is all about.

"The organization of this event shows that it is necessary to accept the current situation, we have to learn to live with it, like we do when we go to the movies, enjoy moments of leisure in a shopping centre, go to a basketball game or take our children to school," emphasized Javier Sánchez Prieto, president of the Fitur organizing committee, as quoted by El País.

And indeed, the figures speak in a way that confirms that this is the overall expectation from nearly everyone and that the tourism industry might be experiencing fatigue from virtual and loss of contacts.

This year’s edition shows a clear trend of recovery in the number of destinations and attendees when compared to last year’s hybrid event (which took place in May) when only 55 countries were present. Still, the high attendance of 165 countries and 11,040 companies recorded in January 2020 (just before the COVID pandemic struck) remains a goal for the future.

The first three days of the fair will be attended only by industry professionals – or over 60,000 people. On the weekend, the fair will be opened up to the general public, with 30,000 people more expected to attend.

Fitur attendees will have to present a COVID-19 vaccination certificate if they come from an EU country. Those coming from non-EU countries will have to show QR Spain Travel Health code or a negative PCR or antigen test taken within 24 hours of arrival at the fair. All attendees will be required to wear FPP2 facemasks.

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