The innovation of Expo Plaza's three channels has brought the whole world online: from Italian and foreign destinations to TOs and agency networks, DMCs, carriers and accommodation, right up to institutions and associations. Complemented by an unparalleled programme of events.
It hasn't even opened its doors yet and it is already a success: 1,530 different players in the tourism chain have signed up for Bit Digital Edition, which will be held online from Sunday 9 to Tuesday 11 May for operators and from Wednesday 12 to Friday 14 for the travelling public.
This is thanks in particular to the innovation presented by Expo Plaza, the digital platform with three channels. First and foremost, a virtual exhibition space that exhibitors can enrich with multimedia and other content to present their offerings, network with operators and engage with travellers. Then there is the Bit Talks conference space , with over 90 streaming events, 13 of which are simultaneous in English, and the high-profile events of Bit Special Talks. Last but not least, Bit Community, the online evolution of MyMatching, the platform for profiling and confidential business meetings between supply and demand, where buyers and sellers will chat via video chat.
Among the destinations, Italian presences range from North to South with a mix of regions with different characteristics. From regions with a varied portfolio such as Lombardy, Friuli Venezia Giulia or Piedmont to traditional seaside destinations such as Emilia Romagna or Liguria.
Or regions known for their historical and cultural attractions, such as Lazio, Campania, Tuscany and Veneto, to regions that combine the open-air and history, such as Trentino, Marche, Umbria and Sicily, or emerging or trendy destinations of recent years, such as Puglia, Basilicata, Abruzzo and Calabria. Not only regions but also many local areas this year, such as the Aeolian Islands, or cities like Maratea or L'Aquila.
Equally diverse are the proposals from abroad. Short-haul is present with authentic tourist icons such as the Canary Islands, Ibiza, Formentera or Andalusia, charming destinations such as Scotland, as well as the “new Europe” of Poland or Slovakia. Among the corners of the Mediterranean to be discovered are Croatia, Egypt or Tunisia, while from the Middle East, Dubai, Jordan and Israel stand out.
In the medium and long haul, the classic “dream holiday” destinations - Thailand, Dominican Republic, Seychelles, Cuba, Jamaica, Honduras, Maldives, Malaysia, Mauritius or Madagascar - will be joined by undiscovered destinations such as the British Virgin Islands or Namibia.
The presence of sellers from the Gulf area such as Anantara, Bulgari Resort Dubai, The Palm Dubai Resort, Caesars Palace Dubai, Delta Hotels By Marriott Jumeirah Beach Dubai, Flydubai, Hyatt Andaz Dubai The Palm 5*, Malatacca Travel And Experiences, The Westin & Le Meridien Mina Seyahi was particularly strong.
In terms of accommodation, all the major chains are present, such as Accor Hotels, BWH Hotel Group, Blu Hotels, Hilton, Marriott and Meliá, as well as numerous independent hotels, including many luxury, boutique and farmhouse hotels, and bed & breakfasts in the national association ANBBA. There are also numerous carriers such as Air Europa, Blue Panorama, Emirates, Eva Airways, Neos Air, Qatar Airways or Volotea. Operators include airport managers such as Sea, one of the most dynamic companies in the sector in recent years, historic tour operating brands and distribution networks such as Alpitour World, Gruppo Uvet, Gattinoni, I Viaggi di Maurizio Levi and Gruppo Nicolaus/Valtur, or more specialised ones such as Peru Inkas Tours, and the cruise scene with MSC Crociere or Cruceros Australis. Also of note are the institutional and associative presences of ASTOI (the Confindustria Association of Italian Tour Operators), FTO-Federazione Turismo Organizzato, Fiavet, Associazione Startup Turismo, Federcongressi & Eventi, Convention Bureau Italia and Convention Bureau Milano, and the return of Grupo Consular De América Latina y El Caribe.
The contents of Bit Talks, the dense programme of digital events entrusted to the editorial direction of Carlo Antonelli with more than 90 conferences available to stream, 13 of which are also available in English, are being defined in more detail.
For the first time this year, the professional programme is complemented by the Bit Special Talks, which are mainly cultural in nature, while the range of reports from authoritative industry analysts will be unprecedented.
For up-to-date information on Bit Digital Edition: www.bit.fieramilano.it, @BitMilano.
Pre-registration has been active since 1 May.