WTM Portfolio have launched a new online portal, WTM Global Hub, to connect and support travel industry professionals around the world. The new resource hub offers the latest guidance and knowledge to help exhibitors, buyers and others in the travel industry face the challenges of the global coronavirus pandemic.
The platform will be regularly updated to deal with the evolving demands of the pandemic and to share ideas about preparing for recovery. WTM Portfolio Director Claude Blanc said, “We are living in an extraordinary time and the WTM team is committed to support the travel industry as it adapts to the unique challenges of coronavirus – and prepares for recovery.
“Our annual events connect 110,000 industry professionals from 182 countries, offering unrivalled commercials opportunities and business insights,. We’ve always augmented our face-to-face events with valuable online resources throughout the year, and now we’re ramping up that support with WTM Gobal Hub.”
One of the highlights at the launch will be a webinar from Oxford Economics, a leader in global forecasting and quantitative analysis, taking place on 28 April. Oxford Economics has predicted that the pandemic will shrink global GDP by 7% in the first half of 2020, with a rebound in the second half resulting in an overall decline of 2.8%, and that there will be some permanent loss of output for the world’s economy. During the webinar, Oxford Economics will focus on the effects that COVID-19 is having on the travel and tourism industries around the world.
A second webinar will feature Simon Calder, a well-known British travel journalist and broadcaster. He is a regular writer for British newspapers and a TV commentator on travel and also a keen attendee of WTM London.
The third webinar will feature Nick Hall from the Digital Tourism Think Tank, alongside Jeremy Jaunchey who has also presented at WTM London. The founder and Chief Executive of travel website Beautiful Destinations, Jauncey is an expert on social media and content creation.
Part of the Global Hub content will be provided in Spanish and Portuguese by WTM Latin America, which will also be adding Latin American content.
The hub will feature seven sections:
- Virtual Events – interactive webinars offering essential advice to help travel businesses cope with the current crisis and thrive in the future.
- Podcasts – expert-led discussions with insights to guide you through these times.
- On-Demand – a library of videos from industry speakers and professionals, offering information and inspiration.
- Blogs – must-read articles with updates and trends from key industry professionals and experts
- Responsible Toursim – a core element of traditional WTM events, this section will be updated with reports from the responsible and sustainable travel sector.
- Travel Technology – keep abreast of developments in this rapidly changing arena.
- Your Travel Community – a place to share positive news from travel professionals about how they are supporting the industry and others around the world.
Blanc concludes, “Webinars, podcasts, videos, news and blogs from key industry figures will provide travel professionals with a wealth of information, advice and support to cope with the current crisis and plan ahead for a ‘new normal’.
“I am very pleased to announce our first three webinars will feature analysis from Oxford Economics, as well as expert comment from Simon Calder and Jeremy Jauncey, as they will help guide the industry through these tough times and into a post-coronavirus world.
“We will travel again and we will meet at WTM events in the future. Until that time comes, WTM Global Hub will keep you informed, inspired and connected.”