Winning coach group business

Winning coach group business Winning coach group business
Exhibitors are being urged to sign-up now for the 39th RDA-Workshop which takes place from 23 to 25 July in Cologne. ‘Offer quality, display variety and win groups!’ is the motto of this year’s event, the largest international sales, purchasing and B2B platform for the coach holidays and group travel sectors.

The RDA-Workshop presents UK coach tourism companies, group travel destinations and coach holiday suppliers with important business opportunities. It offers exhibitors an excellent chance to position their products and services on a growing international stage. Strong personal relationships, contact networks and co-operation at European and global levels are the unique selling points of this trade-only exhibition. Stands are competitively priced with a choice of well-designed standard stands or larger open-stand areas. Exhibitor registration closes on Monday 1 April.

The RDA-Workshop 2013 delivers a tried-and-tested business platform including the opprtunity to meet coach and group holiday tour operators; to network with potential clients and develop business directly with decision-makers. The event is a must for those who want to establish or expand their presence in the German market.

The RDA-Workshop 2012 attracted around 1,100 exhibitors from 60 countries and trade visitors from 2,895 companies. Hotels, tour elements and complete packages were booked with exhibitors at the show, as were ferry passages and theatre tickets.

Coach travel operators, tour operators and an increasing number of travel agents and travel department buyers use the RDA-Workshop to establish new contacts, place orders and assess market trends. The Travel Agency Day, first launched in 2012, is being boosted in 2013 with Wednesday 24 July dedicated to this visitor segment.

According to the 2012 Visitor Survey conducted by the organisers, placing orders is the highest priority at this trade-only exhibition. Buyers increased their purchasing activity by 4 per cent compared to the previous year with 58 per cent reporting that they had placed orders during the course of the exhibition.  A further 19 per cent stated that they would be placing future orders based on their Workshop discussions. The visitor profile demonstrates the show’s value with 74 per cent of visitors in 2012 being owners, managing directors or managers.

The 2012 Visitor Survey also identified the latest trends in coach tourism. City trips were very much in demand (57 per cent), followed by study and excursion trips at 34 per cent. Meanwhile trips to music and theatre performances were also very much in demand at 21 per cent and the trend to combined coach-flight trips also continued (20 per cent).

An RDA-Workshop Special Offers Campaign is being organised once again in 2013 with ‘Experience culture!’ being the lead theme. Culture trips and tours have long been a staple of coach holiday and group travel programmes and account for a significant number of bookings, according to the RDA. “This means excellent chances for you and for your coach tourism partners. As an exhibitor, you are kindly invited to present your cultural concepts, whether these are local traditions and crafts or select music, art, historical or theatrical festivals and events. So show group travel operators and planners just how much potential resides in this theme and all the exciting perspectives you have to offer.

“Culture will remain a core group tourism competency for suppliers and tour operators alike for a long time to come.”

The RDA-Workshop Trend Forum will also draw everybody together with facts, figures and valuable industry insights and experience.

The value of attendance at the RDA-Workshop is clearly seen by RDA members and UK exhibitors Lynnette Crisp, from Visit Kent, Therese Heslop, from Canterbury Cathedral, and Ann Watt from Hever Castle & Gardens, who report that German coach visitor numbers to Kent are holding up well in terms of forward coach group bookings to their popular UK visitor attractions.

The RDA - International Coach Tourism Federation was established in 1951 and is Europe’s largest umbrella organisation for the international coach and group tourism sector and its business partners. It offers a platform for coach sector contacts, industry networking, company referrals, market research and business development. RDA membership currently consists of some 3,000 companies from more than 40 countries.