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World on display at Ottawa's Travel & Vacation Show

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  •   03-31-2015  11:09 am
World on display at Ottawa's Travel & Vacation Show

Halina Player, organizer, Ottawa Travel & Vacation ShowWhen final numbers are counted, attendance of Ottawa's 21st annual Travel & Vacation Show are expected to top 17,000, according to show organizer Halina Player.

The event took place Mar. 28 & 29, introducing travel agents and consumers alike to a multitude of destinations and travel product. As people toured through the Shaw Centre, they came across 190 exhibitors from more than 55 countries including the likes of Belize, Greenland, Turkey and more. A multitude of tour operators, airlines, cruise lines, rail product, hotels, spas and car rental companies were also part of the weekend's roster.

One main objective of the event was for attendees to gain first-hand knowledge from representatives of specific destinations or tour companies, which trumps any research one can do on the Internet, Player said, crediting high attendance to the fact that "people in Ottawa love to travel" paired with a wanderlust that follows such a harsh winter. 

The show’s culinary tourism focus continues to grow, this year featuring visiting chefs from Aruba, Japan and Korea who entertained guests in the demonstration kitchen. In addition, the Embassy of Poland featured the art of Easter Egg painting, both traditional and modern, in their booth.

Active travel was a recurring theme promoted by various exhibitors, including ProColombia and the Azores. Hungary was also a hotspot, showing off its art, culture, spas & wellness and "distinctly European" culture, which is now more easily accessible thanks to direct flights connecting Toronto to Budapest with SkyGreece Airlines. 

Travel agents were offered free admission to the event by presenting their business card.

Player told PAX that many participants call the event "the best travel show in the industry."