Sri Lanka became the cynosure of all eyes at the 50th edition of Vakantiebeurs Travel Fair which was held from 15th to 19th January 2020 at Jaarbeurs, Utrecht. The Netherlands.Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) participated in this event in collaboration with the Sri Lanka Embassy in the Netherlands, along with Industry participants. A tea counter and a dance troupe, sharing the Sri Lanka pavilion which spread over an area of 100 sqm . H.E Sumith Nakandala, Ambassador of Sri Lanka Embassy in the Netherlands , ceremoniously opened the Sri Lanka Pavilion by lighting the Traditional Oil Lamp , amongst a distinguished gathering , including Chairman of the Association of Vereniging van Kleinschalige Reisorganisaties (VVKR), Small & Medium Tour Operators Association in The Netherlands, Mr. Mr.Antonie Brinkman and few delegates from the Association, Ms.Danojani Weerasinghe; Market Officer for Benelux & Scandinavia Regions and respective industry participants. 14 Industry participants joined SLTPB for this event, including Hawk Holidays, Eco Team (Pvt ) Ltd, Andrew the Travel Company, Camlo Lanka Tours (Pvt) Ltd, Zenith Expeditions, Airwing Tours, JourneyScapes Travel, Go Travel Fix, Sunway Holidays, Aitken Spence Travels (Pvt) Ltd, Lion Royal Tourisme, Starron Tours (Pvt) Ltd, Ayubowan Tours & Travels (Pvt) Limited ,and Butterflies (Pvt) Ltd.
The Industry participants with the dance troupe at the Opening Ceremony
The Sri Lanka Pavilion had several highlighted items at the fair which captured the visitor’s attention and earned much praise. The big board advertisement at the entrance of the fair was appreciated by the Industry participants, and the tea counter at the pavilion drew more and more visitors to the Sri Lanka stand as it had a rather cold weather, and especially because of the refreshing and genuine taste of Ceylon tea, which is very famous with the Dutch community there. The stunning cultural performances of the dance troupe, consisting of the Directorate of Army Band & Performing Arts, entertained the visitors to their hearts content, and they were excited to see the cultural glamour and talent of the Sri Lankan performers. Moreover, Special Sri Lankan performances were arranged throughout the fair, at allocated time slots at the cultural stage of the Vakantiebeurs Fair.
Visitors enjoying the Cultural performance
Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) is a regular participant of this annual event, which is held each year to provide a platform for industry participants from all over the world to build important business partnerships, exchange ideas and advice on how to develop their products and businesses further. Apart from participating at this annual fair, SLTPB also launched a digital billboard campaign in the Netherlands last year, and arranged a familiarization tour for the delegation of Association of Vereniging van Kleinschalige Reisorganisaties (VVKR); Small & Medium Tour Operators Association in The Netherlands as key highlights for the Dutch Market.
The artistically created Sri Lanka pavilion
Up to December 2019, tourist arrivals from the Netherlands were recorded as 38,993, which was a decrease of 31.8%, compared with the same period last year, which was 57,160.
Branding in the Big board