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AdventureNEXT Near East Kicks-Off in Aqaba, Celebrates Region’s Growing Adventure Travel Sector

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2 April 2019, Aqaba, Jordan – The Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA) in partnership with the Jordan Tourism Board kicked off AdventureNEXT Near East in Aqaba, Jordan, on 1 April 2019. Now in its third year, the event has proven to be a key conduit for connecting travel companies in the Near East region with registered international travel buyers and media eager to forge new partnerships with Near East companies.

Designed to put emerging adventure travel destinations on the map, this region-specific event continues to support the development of sustainable tourism and experiential and active travel in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region by uniting local suppliers, international buyers, and media. AdventureNEXT Near East 2019 builds on the momentum cultivated over the past two years. Since 2017, $3.1 million USD in new business and more than 1,000 new travelers visiting Jordan can be directly traced to AdventureNEXT Near East, according to a survey of companies that have participated in the event during its first two years.

International travelers have been attracted by the region’s sustainable and one-of-a-kind adventure travel products such as the Jordan Trail and Feynan Ecolodge. As the breadth and depth of these experiences continues to surface and develop, it’s unsurprising the region has reached an audience of 2.7 billion through stories in international print, digital, and social media outlets including Lonely Planet, Outside Magazine, The Washington Post, AFAR, CBC Radio, and adventure travel blogs resulting from participation by international journalists, editors, and influencers at AdventureNEXT Near East.

“Three successive AdventureNEXT Near East events in Jordan puts the MENA region at a pivotal moment where effective strategies to attract adventure and experiential travelers will have an outsized impact on the region for years to come,” said Manal Kelig, executive director of the MENA region for the ATTA. “This region is looking toward the future with plans for further growth potential through adventure travel.”

Over the past couple years, AdventureNEXT Near East has also drawn increased interest from countries throughout the region. This year, tour operator representatives from Lebanon, Tunisia, Egypt, Iran, and Nigeria are in attendance.

Throughout the three days of AdventureNEXT Near East, delegates will attend region-specific workshops and participate in the highly anticipated professional networking Marketplace session. An impressive line-up of speakers includes Céline Cousteau, granddaughter of legendary ocean explorer Jacques Cousteau, who opened the event by sharing how she uses filmmaking to inspire change and deepen human connections.

More than 200 delegates, including 56 buyers, 42 suppliers, and 30 global media, are participating in AdventureNEXT Near East 2019. Hosted buyers and media attended 11 separate Pre-Adventures leading up to the event, and a Post-Adventure in Palestine will introduce delegates to the region beyond Jordan. Over 950 pre-scheduled meetings will take place over these three days as well.

Ayla, Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority (ASEZA), Hyatt Regency Aqaba, Petra Development and Tourism Regional Authority (PDTRA), Palestine, the Jordanian Action for the Development of Enterprises (JADE), and the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature (RSCN) are partnering organizations for this year’s event.

More information about AdventureNEXT Near East 2019, along with the event guide and guest speaker biographies, can be found online at https://www.adventuretravel.biz/events/adventurenext/near-east-2019/

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About Adventure Travel Trade Association
Established in 1990, the Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA) today is widely recognized as a vital leadership voice and partner for the adventure travel industry around the world.

Membership + Trade
The membership and trade organization is designed to be a force for the industry and exists to drive thought leadership, industry promotion, and opportunities to network and convene globally to create trade and business health. It currently serves more than 1,300 member organizations in 100 countries worldwide. The constituency is made up of tour operators, tourism boards, specialty agents, and accommodations all sharing a vested interest in the sustainable development of adventure tourism.

Adventure 360 – Business Services + Events
Through its growing business services division, the ATTA delivers a portfolio of strategic solutions and a robust ecosystem of events around the globe. Those events include AdventureNEXT which focuses on regional promotion and partnerships; AdventureELEVATE a North American-based educational conference; and the premiere adventure travel global conference, the Adventure Travel World Summit. With specialized expertise in research, events, education, media, and promotion, the ATTA business service division is able to provide valuable solutions to a broad set of partners across many verticals of business.

Adventure Travel Conservation Fund
In 2016 the ATTA partnered with other leaders from the adventure travel industry to start the Adventure Travel Conservation Fund (ATCF), a nonprofit that provides funding, connections and an international spotlight on projects that protect the cultural and natural resources which underpin the adventure tourism industry. 100% of membership dues go towards funding these international projects. Each year members nominate projects, which are then vetted and finally voted upon by the ATCF membership.

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