Reed in buoyant mood over travel show sales

Reed Travel Exhibitions (RTE) expects to sell a record amount of space at this year's World Travel Market because of increased demand from the overseas travel and tourism industry.

Almost 30,000 sq m has already been sold for WTM 2002, which takes place at Excel from 11-15 November. RTE group exhibition director Fiona Jeffery anticipates the final figure will be 10% up on the 32,887 sq m sold at last year's show at Earls Court.

African exhibitors are increasing their presence by 75% at this year's event, European exhibitors by 28% and US and Caribbean operators by 15%.

"The only space not contracted so far is being delayed because of the complexities of floor planning,

said Jeffery. "There has been phenomenal levels of interest over the move to Excel coupled with a belief in the recovery of the industry's fortunes by the third quarter, and the need to promote that at this year's show. The opportunity to expand wasn't available at Earls Court so we are taking full advantage for 2002."

RTE is also working to offer visitors discount shopping at Canary Wharf, while Excel and RTE have negotiated a discounted three-day travel pass with Docklands Light Railway.

"We have been working closely with Excel, the major transport providers and hotels to ensure an integrated approach. Change is always a challenge so we have to ensure we get it right,

said Jeffery.

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