Optimism, a great mood and some important questions were on the agenda for the leading annual event of Hungarian tourism, organized by Turizmus Kft.
High-ranking representatives of the Hungarian tourism industry gather once a year on February 1 to assess the previous year, look at the tasks ahead, and award key players in the market.
The 26th edition of the gathering welcomed 1,187 guests, although for the first time ever no one from the administration was presented at the conference. Therefore, speeches were delivered solely by professionals.
Giles Clavie, CEO and president of ORBIS-ACCORHotels welcomed participants by giving an overview of the latest achievements of the hotel chain he is in charge of. The brand-new iStyles at Budapest Ferenc Liszt Airport got extra focus as attendees had the opportunity to take a VR tour of the venue from the Budapest Congress Center, which hosted the event.
One of the highlights was an on-the-spot poll that allowed leading professional organizations to get an idea about what approach the cream-of-the-crop of the industry has vis-á-vis certain questions. It was interesting to see how obvious the majority support was in many cases.
Most participants backed the idea of cutting VAT of mineral water to 5%, and radically decreasing social security contributions, for instance. The majority also spoke out for making the hotel segment and canteens subject to 5% VAT and a 4% tourism development contribution, as is now the case for restaurants, albeit with restrictions.
The opinion was also widely shared that the tourism development contribution should be spent on awareness campaigns to attract more customers and thus boost revenues.
The evening was a great occasion to reveal the latest edition of the “50 Most Influential Persons in Tourism” publication by Turizmus Kft., which features the most renowned personalities of the local scene.
The climax of the event was the awards ceremony where 17 professionals and organizations (pictured) were awarded for their achievements in the year 2017. Categories included car rental, tour guides, campsite runner, event manager, travel agency and festival organizer of the year.
Entertainment was taken care of by the Dirty Led Light Crew, who were followed by a gala dinner and active networking.