At a dinner at the 2021 USTOA Annual Conference and Marketplace on December 7 in San Diego, California, it was announced that Malta, which was originally selected as the host destination for the USTOA Board of Tour Operators (USTOA) annual out-of-state meeting, will host the pre-Covid meeting. The meeting has now been rescheduled for May 2022 at the Corinthia Palace Hotel.
Turkish Airlines will be the official air carrier at the USTOA Malta Board of Directors meeting, and will provide flights to Malta for all USTOA attendees. The Turkish Tourism Development and Development Agency (TGA) is hosting a two-day tour of Istanbul upon return from Malta as part of the event program for the USTOA Board of Directors meeting.
Terry Dale, President and CEO of USTOA, introduced dinner hosts, Michelle Buttigieg, representative of the Tourism Authority of Malta, Ceylan Sensoy, representative of the Tourism Promotion and Development Agency of Turkey, and Alp Ozman, Turkish Airlines. The host delegation for the Malta/Turkey Dinner also included members of the Malta/Turkey delegations, including DMCs and hotels.
“Members of USTOA tour operators, along with the media, have widely recognized that Malta is definitely a country to be seen and heard, which is why we wanted to maintain our commitment to Malta to reschedule the meeting as the first post-Covid state board meeting, especially And that the destination has acted responsibly in restricting entry to vaccinated travelers only.” Terry Dale, USTOA President and CEO.
Dale added: “Continuous proactive messaging from Malta, even during a pandemic, in the North American market is making a huge difference in the minds of tour operators as well as consumers. The out-of-country board meeting in Malta will provide all tour operators with an opportunity to experience first-hand safely why this hidden gem of the sea is Mediterranean, will be trending again in the US and Canadian travel market.”
Michel Buttigieg He said, “The importance of hosting the first USTOA Board of Directors meeting outside the country after the outbreak is particularly important to Malta as it will reinforce the fact that Malta is as safe as any country at this time and, in addition to access to herd immunity, proof of vaccination is required from all associated travelers.” Buttigieg added: “Since the MTA rejoined the USTOA seven years ago, the number of USTOA tour operators adding Malta to their itineraries and those expanding their tourism product in Malta has increased from five to more than 30 in 2019. Hosting a USTOA Out will provide board meeting Nationwide is a great opportunity for board members to experience for themselves why their clients can travel to Malta with confidence as well as enjoy an unforgettable experience.”
Commenting on Turkey’s partnership with Malta in this USTOA event, Ceylon Sensui He commented, “As a member of the Board of Directors of Turkey Tourism Company, TGA is pleased to invite members of the USTOA Board of Directors to Istanbul, a city that lies as a bridge between Eastern and Western cultures that embraces visitors from all over the world. Since the early days of the pandemic, we have launched one of the first certification programs Safe tourism nationwide in the world where we partnered with international certification companies to develop our standard set of measures for tourism enterprises. As the highest-rated city in Europe, Istanbul is ready to offer the perfect blend of culture, history, delicious food, scenery and incredible hospitality” .
Alp Ozman, Regional Marketing Director, New York, Turkish Airlines He said, “We are excited to sponsor this gathering of the best in the tourism industry and to provide USTOA Board members, traveling to Malta and Turkey, an opportunity to experience Turkish Airlines’ award-winning service and hospitality first-hand.”