Dear PATA Members and Industry Colleagues,

We’re in the final stages of preparation for our second physical event of the year – our PATA Annual Summit to be hosted in the beautiful emirate of Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) located just under an hour drive from Dubai.

Our focus with this Summit will be to deliver an Asia Pacific Summit that supports your industry recovery by catalysing initiatives and new collaborations. An essential part of the PATA DNA through its history is its spirit of community. By connecting our network members/industry partners from North America, Europe, Middle East, and Asia Pacific at this global crossroads (in real life:) ), we hope the event will trigger opportunities that are a step above what can be developed via Zoom interactions. Real interactions with new and old connections collaborating in a stunning environment of beach, desert and mountain terrain. Science has proven that the combination of in-person connections coupled with a different, open environment will deliver broader and more unique ideas. Now is that time that we need to think outside the box – invest in leaving your Zoom environment and come join us for a valuable and fruitful experience. We look forward to seeing many of you there.

This past month saw a raft of exciting announcements progressing the travel reopening. A brief roundup of just a few of the markets making great headlines:

It was an honour to be so warmly welcomed back to the first country I called home in Asia – Japan during the Tourism Expo Japan 2022. PATA Vice Chair Ben Liao and I had a great series of meetings with the Japan Tourism Ministry, JTB, JATA and, of course, our own PATA Japan Chapter. We were there for the announcement of Japan border restrictions easing in October as well as Hong Kong SAR’s announcement to end mandatory hotel quarantine for travellers. Great news for the region overall.

Indonesia hosted what I’m sure was a stunning and fruitful G20 conference. I was sad not to attend since I was felled by COVID that week.

Singapore had an exciting F1 Event this month. After a two year hiatus, F1 hit a new record in attendance with 302,000 fans attending the three-day event. Congratulations to Singapore Tourism Board and the Ministry of Trade and Industry (Singapore) on the successful event. This small city-state hosts one of the most exciting events in the region and across the globe.

And Singapore received the honor of being named in the Condé Nast Traveler awards as best city in the world in 2022! As a resident here for the past 17 years, I can advocate for this as well :).

And last but not least, congratulations to the Maldives Ministry of Tourism and Visit Maldives on this Golden Jubilee Year of Tourism to your destination. Celebrating 50 years of success! It was my honour and privilege to accept an award on behalf of Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) for playing a role in supporting the development of Maldives tourism through the years. PATA has been supporting and catalysing tourism development to Asia-Pacific since 1951 at the birth of tourism to Asia.

Last but not least, a big congratulations to all our PATA Gold Award Winners. We recognised 25 winning projects that stood out from 136 entries in this year’s PATA Gold Awards across our Sustainability and Social Responsibility and our Destination Marketing categories. This year we added two new Tourism Destination Resilience awards to highlight this area of focus for PATA and its critical need for destinations. The winning Gold Award projects are truly deserving of the honour for continuing to set the industry standard for excellence and innovation. 👏🏻 Next year, we’ll add a category for Customer Service Excellence. As mentioned in my last newsletter, this is absolutely a category that we need to celebrate and acknowledge.  Asia is exemplary in its delivery of hospitality with heart. Let’s put the pride and honor back into service for our everyday service heroes.  

Best regards,