Vacations Expo 2016

Vacations Expo: Maldives’ first travel exhibition kicks off

Vacations Expo, the Maldives’ first travel exhibition, kicked off yesterday at the National Art Gallery.

Economic Development Minister Mohamed Saeed inaugurated the exhibition at an opening ceremony Thursday afternoon.

Speaking at the ceremony, Saeed said the expo is a good initiative. Such fairs are important to the Maldives as they will help boost the tourism industry, he added.

Endorsed by the Maldives Marketing and PR Corporation (MMPRC), Maldives Association for Travel Agent and Tour Operators (MATATO), Liveaboard Association of Maldives (LAM) and the Maldives National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MNCCI), Vacations Expo aims to promote the travel and tourism industry.

Ismail Hameed, the director of marketing and public relations at High Rise, the organiser of the expo, said the company has been coming up with innovative ideas to help the industry. The Vacations Expo is one such idea, he said.

In his remarks at the opening ceremony, Hameed also thanked the exhibitors and sponsors.

Inner Maldives Holidays is the main sponsor of the event with Moodhu Holidays as gold partner and Tourism Malaysia, Catch Maldives, MV Hotels and Allied Insurance as silver partners.

Some 35 local and international exhibitors showcased their products and services at the expo.

Exhibitors include airlines, hotels, guest houses, surf and dive schools offering attractive travel packages and exclusive holiday deals. Daily raffles will also be drawn with prizes such as airline tickets, gift hampers, travel packages, excursions and travel insurance to be won.

“The purpose of Vacations Expo is to promote inbound and outbound tourism,” said Habeeba Hussein, General Manager of High Rise Pvt Ltd.

“Maldivians travel abroad a lot, and we want to make it easier for travelers to plan their vacations and find out special fares and travel packages. So we want to bring in travel products from other countries and showcase them here.

“We have the Malaysian Tourism Board exhibiting here, the Singapore Tourism board, and an Australian dive company as well.  We want to promote our own products internationally, too, and to promote local tourism to Maldivians and the expatriates working here.”

Vacations Expo will be an annual event. High Rise hopes the exhibition will take place on “a grander scale” next year.

The expo will be open to all visitors daily from 4 – 6pm and 8 -11pm until 6 August.

For more information, visit www.vacations.mv.