COMPASS at ITB in Berlin


The world’s leading travel trade show is of course an obligation for the COMPASS-Team but one at which fun will not be neglected. Where else is it possible to talk about tourism marketing in Burundi, regional building culture and tourism in the Allgäu and the development of tourism in Kazakhstan within only a few hours? The variety within the tourism industry becomes clear at the ITB in an impressive way. As always it is very inspiring to exchange tourism trends with experts from all over the world.

In this article we would like to report what COMPASS is doing at the ITB and which meetings/events we are recommending:

As a matter of course we provide guidance to our long term clients Burundi and Kazakhstan and assist their trade fair presence and their Trade Fair Marketing for Destinations: this means, that COMPASS staff will be available at all five days of the fair at the stand in order to support, consult, translate and be the German-speaking contact for visitors to the stand.

In preparation of the fair we have organized a cocktail reception at the Burundi stand on Wednesday evening at 6:00 pm in hall 21a/108. Next to three National Parks, Lake Tanganyika and its beautiful capital Bujumbura Burundi has even more, yet undiscovered tourism attractions, as the official source of the Nile, which originates in Burundi’s mountains. This USP shall now be awarded as an UNESCO World Heritage Site.

PanAfrica - globetrotter equipment

PanAfrica – globetrotter equipment

For a long time our commitment in Africa has gone beyond Burundi and Rwanda. This year we will strongly promote the launch of “PanAfrica”: our travel community for entire Africa is now online at Watch out for our globetrotter in the African halls and get more detailed information!

At the Kazakhstan stand, the country of 1000 horizons, we connect Kazakh suppliers with the German tourism industry and take care of German-speaking customers. A press conference on 7th March at 11:00 am in the conference room in hall 5.3 will inform about the EXPO 2017 in Astana. The Kazakh stand is situated in hall 7.2a/203.

The correlation between regional building culture and tourism is another issue COMPASS is concentrating on. During the ITB we organize an expert hearing from both subject areas as a prelude to a research project. On behalf of the BBSR (Federal Institute for Research on Building, Urban Affairs and Spatial Development) we will work out the project jointly with our project partner HJP Planer from Aachen. Furthermore, we will be present at the stand of our partner university CBS (Cologne Business School, hall 11.1/202) during the entire trade fair. Additionally, we offer the opportunity to discuss this interesting topic at the DGT stand (German Society for Tourism Research, hall 11.1/112) on Thursday from 4:00 to 6:00 pm.

For years we address the issue of tourism and peace. Thus we look forward to present the freshly printed “International Handbook on Tourism and Peace” from UNWTO, to which Martina Leicher und Karsten Palme contributed some chapters. In the context of the ITB the handbook will be presented on the big stage (press conference of IIPT, hall 4.1, Friday 7th March, 1:00 pm).

The presentation of the Best Exhibitor Award by the CBS on Saturday is the highlight of every ITB.  Already months before Matina Leicher forms a student team at CBS and organizes the trade fair stand evaluation. Within the first three days more than 30 CBS students evaluate all approximately 4000 stands by means of our innovative survey technology “MobileSurvey”. The best exhibitors in 11 categories will be honored on Saturday evening at 6:00 pm in the Palais am Funkturm on the big stage in front of 700 guests. Every year the award ceremony is a colourful spectacle with performances, music and dance. The players of the global tourism industry meet there for the last time, before the ITB closes its doors again on Sunday.

Author: Karsten Palme

I am Managing Director of COMPASS. I studied Geography of Economics and Tourism M.A. (RWTH Aachen) and I am certified trainer for innovation and management. My consultancy focus lies in destination management and tourism marketing with focus on cross-border cooperation. I also offer managementtraining and train-the-trainer-seminars. Economic Development: Cross-border co-operations, promotion of investments, city and location marketing, development of business clusters. Contact:, tel. +49 (0)221 94339638

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