Travelweek São Paulo by ILTM opened on Tuesday 5 May with one of Brazil’s most reputed economists, Ricardo Amorim, sharing his views on the continuing increase in numbers and range of interest of luxury Brazilian travellers. He urged the world’s luxury travel suppliers not to overlook smaller markets such as Paraguay, Bolivia, Ecuador, Peru, Colombia, Uruguay and Chile.
Despite Brazil’s poor economy, Mr Amorim observed that real wages for the working population in Brazil are going up. He commented, “Brazilians have more money to spend and they love to travel. However, not only are they able and willing to travel, these are people that love to spend when they are abroad, mainly because Brazil is one of the most expensive countries in the world in which to live.”
In fact, Brazilians are second only to the Japanese when it comes to the amount spent when travelling abroad. Mr Amorim continued, “As an emerging market, Brazilians have wanted to travel for decades and now that they can, they take pride in their travels and really enjoy spending their money and sharing their experiences.”
In conclusion, Mr Amorim also revealed that in 1980, those who travelled by plane numbered 9 from the US and Europe, in comparison to 1 from the rest of the world. Within 20 years, these statistics will be totally reversed with 1 person from the US and Europe travelling for every 9 people from the rest of the world and “Brazil will be leading the charge”.
The powerful subject of ‘Food as the new global currency in bespoke travel’ then took centre stage at the Opening Ceremony. Three of the world’s most forward-thinking chefs – Brazilian Alex Atala (DOM and Dalva e Dito, Sao Paulo), Peruvian Virgilio Martinez (Central, Lima) and the Spanish Andoni Aduriz (Mugaritz, San Sebastian) – took part in a live discussion on stage, moderated by renowned travel and food journalist Nilou Motamed.
Motamed set the scene with the observation that travellers today are obsessed with the sense of place of a destination and this is defined by its food. Atala pointed out that food connects seven billion people on a daily basis and as such, is more powerful than any social media.
Alison Gilmore, Senior Exhibition Director of the ILTM Portfolio (read our interview with her here), summed up the impact of this stimulating Opening Ceremony at Travelweek São Paulo by ILTM, “This is what our guests have come to hear – who are the new high-end travellers from Brazil and Latin America, why they choose to go where they go and what they are seeking when they get there. The gastronomic reputation of a destination is redefining the luxury travel map and the topic is on everyone’s lips at Travelweek São Paulo by ILTM.”
The business of Travelweek São Paulo by ILTM continues through to Friday 8 May with over 1200 luxury travel suppliers from across the globe and buyers from predominantly Brazil and across Latin America meeting on a strictly one-to-one, mutually matched basis.
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