Future of Travel Dominates Discussions at 2024 PATA Annual Summit

by Alice

Industry trends took center stage at the 2024 Pacific Area Travel Association (PATA) Annual Summit, which commenced today at the Grand Lisboa Palace in Cotai. The event opened with a conversation between Pansy Ho, chair of Shun Tak Holdings, and Peter Semone, chair of PATA.

During their discussion, Ho reflected on her career and cultural identity, emphasizing the integral role of culture in tourism. “In Macao, we have always combined developing our cultural programmes alongside promoting tourism,” Ho noted. She highlighted Macao’s evolution into the world’s largest integrated resort destination and its strategic goal of becoming a gateway to China through diverse sectors such as MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions), entertainment, arts, culture, and wellness.


The morning continued with Caroline Bremner, senior head of travel research at Euromonitor International, presenting “Key Travel and Tourism Trends to Watch.” Bremner shared insights on the value Asia-Pacific travelers place on personalized experiences and the region’s embrace of technology to enhance travel. She underscored the critical importance of sustainability, noting that consumers increasingly prefer purpose-driven brands that balance people, planet, and profits.


In a panel discussion titled “Where Are We Heading?”, speakers echoed these themes. Liu Shijin, vice chairman of the World Tourism Alliance, highlighted growing consumer willingness to pay a premium for green tourism. Sarah Wang, regional director of the World Travel & Tourism Council, discussed how AI is being utilized to promote sustainability, citing examples like Hilton Hotels reducing food waste and Microsoft partnering with American Airlines to improve taxi times, thereby saving fuel and increasing efficiency.


The summit also explored future trends in hotels, aviation, and travel technology, with afternoon sessions focusing on the role of travel agents in the AI era and tourism’s contribution to economic diversification.

Held for the second time in Macao, the first being in 2005, the 2024 PATA Annual Summit continues to unfold. Stay tuned for further updates. Macao News is an official media partner of the event.



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