Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA) hosted 200 Italian travel agents for three days last week, marking the first ever mega ‘fam’ (familiarisation) trip to Qatar, in a new drive to generate visitor growth from Italy.
The agents are affiliated with Viaggidea, part of the Alpitour Group, one of Italy’s top three tourism operators, which represents 27 per cent of the Italian tourism market. The company held its annual summit in Doha, allowing the travel agents operating under its umbrella to enjoy the country’s authentic tourism offerings first-hand.
Hassan Al Ibrahim, Chief Tourism Development Officer at QTA, commented, “This mega fam trip is testament to the shared belief we have in the uniqueness of Qatar’s tourism offering and its relevance to the Italian market.” He added, “Italy’s travel agents can offer their clients new and authentic experiences through visits to Qatar, and we are pleased to provide them with the support they need along the way.”
Since 2011, visitor arrivals from Italy have increased by 47%. To build on that growth, QTA started operating a representative office in Milan 18 months ago. By the end of 2016, Qatar had recorded more than 33,000 Italian visitor arrivals.
Paolo Guariento, Viaggidea Brand Manager, commented, "Qatar is without any doubt a destination with great potential. We are really grateful to Qatar Tourism Authority and Qatar Airways for supporting us in the implementation of the largest ever fam trip hosted by Qatar, which included the number one network of travel agencies, the Welcome Travel Group. Qatar proved its great tradition of hospitality and thorough attention to detail, and we couldn't have asked for more. Alpitour travel agents will give their maximum support for the development of this fascinating destination."
Adriano Apicella, CEO Welcome Travel Group, added, “I am deeply grateful for this valuable opportunity which allowed 200 of our best travel agencies to discover some of Qatar’s wonders over three days. This has been a thrilling experience characterized by high quality services and perfect organization from QTA’s side. In addition to modernity and to large investments we have seen the attention to tradition and culture paid in Qatar’s development, which distinguishes and differentiates the destination from others.”
The fam trip included a workshop on the destination’s offering and how visitors can plan the perfect trip, site visits to various hospitality establishments in Qatar as well as a desert safari to Khor Al Udaid’s majestic sand dunes and inland sea. QTA has three more mega fam trips planned this year through which it will host agents, tour operators and media from the USA and UK and Germany.
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