Australian Tourism Exchange 2024 Opens in Melbourne

The 44th edition of Australian Tourism Exchange 2024 (ATE24), Tourism Australia’s largest annual trade event, has officially opened in Melbourne, drawing thousands of delegates to the Melbourne Convention and Entertainment Centre.

ATE24 kicked off on Monday, 20 May 2024, and will run until Thursday, 23 May. During the event, 1,500 members of the Australian tourism industry will meet with 714 global tourism wholesalers and retailers across approximately 50,000 one-on-one business appointments.

Ms. Phillipa Harrison, Managing Director of Tourism Australia,  emphasized the importance of ATE24 for the future of the Australian tourism industry, as international travel numbers approach pre-pandemic levels from 2019. “We are confident this is the year we will return to those 2019 levels so we can stop referring to that benchmark and once again focus on the sustainable growth of our industry which we experienced in the decade leading up to the pandemic,” said Ms. Harrison. “Events like ATE are crucial to helping us achieve that as it brings global tourism wholesalers and retailers from around the world to Melbourne to hear from Australian tourism operators about the experiences they have to offer.”

Highlighting the experiential aspect of the event, Harrison added, “We know it is also best to show not tell and that’s why the international buyers will also have the opportunity to experience Australia’s tourism offerings first-hand while they are here through pre and post-event familiarizations.”

Mr. Brendan McClements, CEO, of Visit Victoria,  remarked that hosting the Australian Tourism Exchange will support the continued growth of Victoria’s visitor economy by showcasing the state’s distinctive tourism experiences. “We’re thrilled to be hosting ATE in Melbourne. The event provides a global platform for Visit Victoria’s new tourism campaign, Every bit different, which highlights the inclusivity, diversity, and creativity of our state’s experiences and regions.”

McClements noted that Victoria’s visitor economy reached a record high of $37.8 billion in December 2023, with Tourism Research Australia forecasting an additional $16 billion in growth potential by 2028. “We’re going all in at ATE to drive that growth in international markets. The benefit for local tourism operators through ATE is immense – they’re networking with global decision-makers and media to foster long-term relationships and profile their business on the world stage.”

ATE24 is delivered by Tourism Australia in partnership with Visit Victoria.

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