The largest tourism exhibition ITB Berlin, which takes place annually in Berlin, impressed me so much that I want to devote a separate post to it. I hope it will be useful to my colleagues – tourism workers.
As in any other exhibition, ITB Berlin participants are divided into 3 categories: exhibitors (exhibitors), buyers (buyers) and visitors (visitors). Visitors, in turn, are also divided into 2 groups – professionals and ordinary visitors.
The purpose of the exhibition: conclude as many contracts as possible between exhibitors (those who sell their services) and buyers (those who want to buy certain services). Accordingly, ITB Berlin exhibitors are tour operators, tourist centers and tourism departments of various destinations, hotels, airlines, IT companies, etc., and buyers are all those who need the services of exhibitors.
Buying a place at such an exhibition is not a cheap pleasure. Usually the tourism authority of each country buys a large area and then sells it in small pieces to its companies.
But there are supergiants who buy huge areas to set up their stands. In general, stands are a separate issue. It’s scary to imagine how much money companies spend on their design, manufacture and installation. If these are airlines, then right on the stands they install chairs, like in their own planes, and if hotels, then they put beds. The Emirates booth generally had two floors. Most of all I liked the beach-themed stand (even sand was poured there) with a typical beach bar, behind which stood a scantily clad girl and a guy, decorated (not a guy, but a stand) with a surfboard and other tropical things, and the negotiation area was made in the form of a bungalow. We still didn’t understand what exactly this company does, but their booth was insanely cool.
Exhibition ITB Berlin lasts several daysthe former of which are intended for tourism workers, and the latter (usually falling on weekends) for ordinary visitors.
ITB Berlin takes place annually on the basis of the exhibition complex Messe Berlinlocated on the outskirts of the city. It’s not just exhibition grounds, it’s a whole city, consisting of 30 (if I’m not mistaken) 3-storey buildings or halls. It will take more than one hour to get around it. Inside the complex there are many cafes where you can have a bite to eat. In addition, it has its own tower, which houses a panoramic restaurant. For conferences and meetings there is a special business center City Cube.
How to get there
Near Messe there is two metro stations – Messe Nord and Messe Sud. Each station is closer to the corresponding entrance to the exhibition: Nord – to the north, South – to the south.
In addition, a large number of shuttles. There are shuttles that collect people from hotels – partners of the exhibition, but there are just city shuttles. We have always used the second option.
Although, I must say that the subway is faster – there are terrible traffic jams in Berlin. But the shuttles are free, but you have to pay for the metro. In the evening, it is also better to get out either by shuttle or by subway. Taxi lines line up several hundred meters. And, yes, by the way, shuttles run only in the morning and in the evening, that is, to bring everyone in and then take them away. If you need to go to the exhibition during the day, you will have to take a taxi or take the subway.
Where to stay
A list of partner hotels of the exhibition has been published on the ITB Berlin website in the Travel Information section. There are hotels from 3* to 5*. How I was looking for a hotel is described in a post about Berlin.
I think that if you find any hotel not on the list of ITB Berlin, you can just ask the hotel staff to provide you with information about the shuttle routes. True, it is not a fact that they will have such information, but in any case, they do not take money for demand.
How to prepare
First of all, you need to buy a ticket on the official website. As far as I remember, there 3 categories of tickets – a ticket for 1 day, a ticket for all days and a ticket for ordinary visitors (valid only on the last days of the exhibition).
We took tickets for all days for 50 euros each. If you do not take care of this in advance, but buy already on the spot, you will have to overpay 20 euros. If you didn’t manage to print a ticket before the trip, then you can easily do it right in Messe.
On the site, you can also create your personal account, fill out a company profile and send invitations to a meeting to other participants.
During the exhibition
Both at the entrance and at the exit you need to present your ticket, that is, to do a kind of check-in and check-out. Wardrobe paid – 2.5 euros.
The exhibition is huge and difficult to navigate. But, fortunately, throughout the territory hung a huge number of schemeswho save.
All exhibitors are divided into halls according to their geographic affiliation (which country this or that exhibitor represents) and field of activity (for example, IT specialists have their own hall, and cruise lines have their own).
All business meetings and events should be planned for the first days, because many people leave without waiting for the official end of the exhibition. During the day there are various seminars, and after work – parties.
Since I have been cooking in tourism for 8 years, visiting ITB Berlin was an important event for me. It’s very cool to be among several thousand like you from all over the Earth. Everyone is on the same wavelength, you can share your experience with everyone or, on the contrary, learn from someone else’s experience.
Okay, brag and that’s enough.