What to expect from MITT 2020 at Crocus Expo

MITT’s director Artem Chernyshov shares all

What awaits MITT – Russia’s leading travel and tourism show – in 2020 when it moves to Crocus Expo? MITT’s Event Director Artem Chernyshov tells RATA travel news’ Valeria Sergeeva.

MITT's big move to Crocus Expo

In line with Hyve’s other Moscow exhibitions, MITT this year will be moving from its previous home of Expocenter to Crocus Expo – Eastern Europe’s largest exhibition venue.

According to Artem, the move will bring many advantages to help improve the show experience:
  • A more developed infrastructure enabling visitors to enter efficiently without queues.
  • Extensive places to rest and relax on the 2nd floor, which is a food court with plenty of cafés and restaurants.
  • 35,000 free parking spaces.
  • Large and spacious pavilions allowing the whole exhibition to take place in one pavilion, improving navigation for visitors and providing better stand locations for exhibitors.

While Crocus’ distance from the city centre may be seen by some as a disadvantage, Artem explains: “We are prepared to possibly see fewer visitors in 2020, but those who need to be there will come. Our experience with other exhibitions that have already moved to Crocus suggests that targeted visitors will always attend. Our exhibition is trade-only, and we maintain this concept.”

New exhibitors at MITT 2020

A whole host of destinations and travel service companies will exhibit this year, including those from Belgium, Burundi, Iran, Kenya, Costa Rica, Latvia, Norway, Peru, Syria, Sierra Leone, Uganda, and Venezuela. 8-10 new Russian regions are also expected on top of last year’s 53 exhibiting regions.

Visitor expectations

According to Artem Chernyshov, each year more and more visitors attend MITT to source information about tourist destinations and services. Despite a lot of information being available online, exhibitions continue to be a platform for finding partners and meeting face-to-face, which is especially important in the tourism business.

Visitor interest in Russian outbound tour operators is decreasing, says Artem, as tour operators start to promote themselves independently in the regions, holding events and communicating directly with travel agents. Around 80% of visitors hail from the Moscow region, so MITT is working to increase the number of visitors from Russia’s regions.

One of the main obstacles Artem sees is the high cost of visiting the capital: “Many people attend the exhibition for just one day, not only from nearby areas, but from Kazan for example. A hotel for several days in Moscow is expensive. For MITT 2020, we have offers for blocks of hotel rooms, but transport costs are often not cheap either.”

Making the most of your visit to MITT

To spend your time at MITT effectively, Artem advises to plan your journey and onsite sessions in advance. It’s also worthwhile letting potential partners know in advance that you want to meet them: describe yourself and your offerings, and why you want to come.

Onsite you can use the show’s app to find the business programme schedule, as well as pose questions directly to the speakers. There will also be the MITT Matchmaking appointment system, which the organisers are working to optimise.

“In 2018, we launched a meeting appointment programme. We see a large number of meeting requests going unanswered, so its use is still not universal. It’s getting better – in 2019 30% of requests led to confirmed meetings.”

MITT 2020’s business programme

In 2020, MITT will offer a large session on inbound and outbound tourism, co-organised with Rostourism. Day 2 of the show, Turkey Day, will be devoted to developing Turkish destinations, with key speakers from Turkey’s tourism industry.

“All sessions will be aimed at business development. We’ll have a digital marketing event and a session on non-mass trends and how best to sell and promote them. There’ll also be a series of practical events on how to work with clients of different generations,” says Artem.

The future of trade shows

Speaking of the relevancy of trade exhibitions, Artem expressed that MITT differs from other trade shows in that tourism services don’t have physical products that can be displayed. There remains a real need for communication between industry players, which MITT provides with its show and educational business programme.

“But the most important aspect of trade shows,” says Artem, “is that it’s impossible to reach such a large number of potential partners in just three days. It’s impossible to go to 53 regions of Russia and 63 countries in such a short time. But meeting them all at the show, if you really try, is possible. This is a huge number of potential partners waiting to share their contact details and start relationships and collaboration.”

ITE Group transforms into Hyve

MITT’s organisers have recently rebranded from ITE Group to Hyve Group. The new branding forms a strong image of a company that maintains good relationships with partners, customers, suppliers and employees. Stemming from the word ‘beehive’, reflects the company’s thriving business community on a mission to deliver unmissable, market-leading events.

“The Hyve brand is the epitome of our ambitions, strategy and new corporate values, and its appearance marks an important milestone on the path to continuously developing the company.”

MITT will take place at Crocus Expo from 17-19 March 2020.

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