“We visited Malta, and we always come back for more”

“We visited Malta, and we always come back for more”

This was the main sentiment being felt on stand EU356 at this year’s World Travel Market, the world’s largest Tourism Expo in the heart of London, where once again, the Malta Tourism Authority’s Head Office and UK Office, organised, coordinated and oversaw Malta’s participation.

World Travel Market London has been long known as a meeting place for the global travel trade - responsible for reconnecting, rebuilding and innovating the industry. Now in its 43rd year, WTM London continued to invite tens of thousands of senior industry professionals, government ministers and international press to connect, network and grow.

The Malta Stand was buzzing with activity the moment doors opened on Monday 7th November at 10:00am, with back-to-back meetings for trade representatives from Malta including Heritage Malta, Air Malta and VisitGozo, who were all busy meeting tour operators, travel agents, airline representatives, bloggers, vloggers, content creators, innovators and people who have already started discovering just why there is more to explore, when visiting Malta, and who keep coming back for more, year after year.

Malta’s Minister for Tourism, Hon Clayton Bartolo was also actively present on the Malta stand, together with the Chairman and the CEO of the Malta Tourism Authority, Dr Gavin Gulia and Mr Carlo Micallef, who were also accompanied by the Deputy CEO and Chief Officer Strategic Development, Mr Leslie Vella. Those present also had the opportunity to hear from Manchester United Legend Wes Brown, who has recently spent some time in Malta, and who could experience first-hand just how much the islands have to offer for anyone who decides to choose the Maltese Islands as their ideal holiday destination.

“The Future of Travel Starts Now” was the theme aptly chosen by the organisers for this year’s World Travel Market, and the overall feeling on the Malta stand reflected just that. Many of those present commended Malta’s efforts during the pandemic, including the creation of the €20m Travel Recovery Plan, which, coupled with the various COVID-19 assistance schemes, managed to keep the tourism sector afloat during the challenging times of the pandemic. Many also commented on the foresight which the Ministry for Tourism and the MTA had when devising the Malta Tourism Strategy 2021-2030, based on the three pillars of Recovery, Rethinking and Revitalising. Others were also very keen at just how Malta is diversifying its tourism product, investing in the various niches, which is what, in the end is enticing people to keep returning to Malta, while also encouraging others to visit Malta for the first time.

All the above bear testament to the undying marketing endeavours by the Marketing team at Head Office as well as the team at the VisitMalta UK Office – endeavours which take a 360-degree approach to ensure that the right message gets across to the right people.

“Words of encouragement were also conveyed by various travel trade and airline representatives, who discussed their plans to continue growing in Malta, in meetings with Hon Clayton Bartolo and the MTA Representatives.   It was particularly relevant to note that Jet 2.com and Jet 2 Holidays announced a four-year growth plan for Malta which will see their next year’s tourist numbers to Malta increase by 35%,” MTA CEO Carlo Micallef said.

“The professionalism, sterling preparation and organisation of the Malta Tourism Authority is contributing to Malta’s relevance in the tourism world not only on the recovery aspect but also on the rethinking and revitalizing stage for the years to come. No wonder that on a span of a few weeks the MTA UK & Ireland Office was awarded with the prestigious UK & Ireland Tourist Board of the Year and recently proclaimed silver at the WanderLustTravel Awards 2022 as “Malta the Most Desireable Island (Europe).” Having such a reputable and respected office outside the country reaffirms our commitment to remain ahead of the curve – by nurturing new, exciting and unique experiences for our visitors,” outlined Minister for Tourism Clayton Bartolo.