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VisitWiltshire has hosted its first virtual familiarisation event, in conjunction with UKinbound, the UK’s only trade association that represents inbound tourism. The event was attended by 34 international and domestic travel trade buyers.
The virtual familiarisation event, hosted by the county’s Destination Management Organisation, VisitWiltshire, engaged with UK DMCs who target travellers from all over the world. The purpose of presenting Wiltshire and its many tourism and hospitality businesses is to aid the UK’s recovery, generate bookings for 2021 and 2022, and boost the local economy. Travel trade buyers will feature destinations and contract tourism product to include in bookable FIT or group travel itineraries which are distributed to their customers for future trips to the region.
Lorna Matthews Keel from Salisbury’s Chequered History Guides presented at the event and provided expert knowledge and information, as well as sharing captivating imagery and videos of Wiltshire. The presentation showcased many of Wiltshire’s towns and villages as well as tourism and hospitality businesses, including Longleat, Bowood House & Gardens, Salisbury Cathedral, REME Museum, STEAM Museum of the Great Western Railway in Swindon, The Bridge Tea Rooms in Bradford on Avon, and Whatley Manor Hotel & Spa in Malmesbury, among others.
Florence Wallace, Head of Travel Trade, said: “As it was not possible this year to run any trade familiarisation visits in person, we decided to do things a little differently, so we created the virtual fam visit Wiltshire quiz and brought it to life by using a storyteller guide who shared her experiences in addition to the historical and practical information that the trade require. This enabled us to talk about all the wonderful places to visit, and things to do in Wiltshire in a fun and informative way. We are delighted that this event was such a success and hope it can help the trade buyers plan their itineraries for future trips.”
Temi Fatona, Events Manager for UKinbound, said: “It was great to partner with VisitWiltshire and have so many of our tour operator members take part in this engaging, interactive and fun familiarisation trip. In these challenging times it’s imperative that we adapt and find new ways to connect buyers and suppliers, and our virtual fams are an effective way of doing this.”
In the same week, VisitWiltshire also launched its new travel trade pages on its website with a new look and updated information for the trade. This includes key product information, new travel trade toolkit, suggested itineraries and Wiltshire on the Great West Way. The new travel trade website page is available here: www.visitwiltshire.co.uk/groups
VisitWiltshire runs an annual programme of travel trade activity in conjunction with Wiltshire businesses and destinations. This includes attendance at exhibitions, familiarisation visits, production of trade guides and directories, plus digital marketing including the travel trade websites – www.visitwiltshire.co.uk/groups and www.GreatWestWay.co.uk/traveltrade
NOTES TO EDITORS
For more information contact:
Florence Wallace, Head of Travel Trade
Flowallace@visitwiltshire.co.uk / 07436 588 860
VisitWiltshire is the official Destination Management & Marketing Organisation for Wiltshire representing 500 partners. It is a public/private sector membership organisation. VisitWiltshire’s priority is to grow the county’s Visitor Economy by raising awareness of the destination and generating additional tourism visits and spend. Wiltshire’s Visitor Economy currently generates an estimated £1.5billion and supports over 28,000 jobs.
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If you are looking for images to support your news stories and features, VisitWiltshire has an extensive photo library of images featuring the vast array of product on offer around the county. Over 1,200 images organised into 135 albums have been uploaded onto Flickr and are available free of charge to press. To view the full list of VisitWiltshire albums, click this LINK.
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Holly Windsor, PR and Communications Manager at VisitWiltshire