During downturn, in Asia we trust

Source : Travel Distribution Summit Asia

Why the big fuss about the Asian travel industry and product distribution, it can’t be that complicated can it?

Companies expecting to dance across Asia and forge a successful business by applying blanket distribution models or successful European and US models, will either fail miserably or cost themselves needlessly.

Distributing travel products across a region as economically, politically and culturally diverse as Asia is a tremendously complicated proposition. Add Australia, New Zealand and the other islands of the Pacific into the mix as well, and suddenly the recipe grows increasingly murky.

The allure of the Far East from overseas investors is still alive and extremely healthy however. What began with India and China now looks likely to continue further South-East into Vietnam and the Philippines, where internet penetration is slowly but surely making inroads. Internet penetration is widely accepted as a measure of a country’s financial stability and prosperity, so with around 20% of both countries populations now internet capable their industries are ripening.

Indonesia with its 20 million connections sits teeming with potential too, regardless that the 20 million only accounts for a mere 8.6% of the total population – perhaps the most interesting fact.

Both India and China continue their rapid ascent up the list of richest countries (according to GDP), now both in the worlds top 5 nations and experiencing percentages of growth more than double that of the other nations that round out the top 5. The implications of the combined total of outbound tourists from these two nations will be immense and unprecedented, and provide huge opportunities for businesses with penetrative and accurate distribution strategies.

United is one thing that in most respects Asian nations are not, but the whole region (bar a few minor exceptions) still adheres largely to a browse online book offline culture. Allocation of resources, marketing spends and chosen distribution channels remain paramount when trying to catch the wary Asian consumer. A smiling face behind an agency desk will still reap greater rewards than a mouse and internet browser, ninety percent of the time.

Personal computer penetration remains low compared to Europe and in the U.S. But a new platform for distribution that appears to be gathering popular momentum is mobile. Mobile has already emerged as a viable distribution and marketing channel in Japan, and to a lesser extent South Korea in the recent past. This much more affordable and convenient consumer tool piles mobile channels into an already complicated distribution mix.

This confusing tapestry of distribution possibilities will be dissected over 2 days of industry lead presentations, discussions and case study analyses by top executives from the largest travel brands in the APAC region.

To deal more entirely with all the key issues, the 2008 summit will consist of 3 individual conferences, accompanied by a 25 stand technology exhibition. This vibrant and exciting region, coupled with the enthusiasm of its stakeholders classically produces very gritty and rich debate in a familiar and professional environment.

This is the first time that EyeforTravel has combined 3 conferences at one summit in Asia, but it has proved a successful format at the European and North American versions of the same event. All three agendas stem from overwhelming demand, and include the Travel Distribution Executive conference, Revenue Management and Pricing, and new for 2008 Travel Distribution Technology.

For more details, agendas and speakers visit www.eyefortravel.com/tdsasia First discount expires November 30th.

EyeforTravel’s 5th annual Travel Distribution Summit Asia, which is scheduled for this coming March in Singapore. Widely regarded as Asia-Pacific’s essential online travel event, TDS Asia has quickly established itself as an excellent mechanism for benchmarking businesses and forecasting for the ensuing 12 months.

Over 600 attendees ensured that the 2007 event was a perfect networking and learning platform, and solidified TDS Asia’s position as the most important travel distribution event in the APAC calendar.

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