WTCE returns bigger & more social


The World Travel Catering & Onboard Services Expo (WTCE) returns to Hamburg from 10-12 April 2018 and will boast the largest ever floorspace in its seven years, spanning four halls, with more than 350 suppliers showcasing products and services for the travel catering, passenger comfort and travel retail industries. The show will also offer new and improved networking facilities.

The free-to-attend event attracts more than 3,700 onboard industry professionals. Many suppliers are already confirmed to exhibit, including LSG Group, BestPartner Food, En Route International, The Bake Factory, Anaik Beauty and dnata. Many new businesses are also confirmed to exhibit, including the Avantegarde Spirits Company, BitesWeLove, Bridgehead Foods and Dlecta Foods.

New networking features for 2018 include the WTCE Business Meeting Hub – a dedicated place for attendees to schedule meetings to discuss new contracts and potential partnerships. VIP guests are invited to book space in advance of, or at the show.

With a dedicated area for professional meetings to take place, the VIP Buyers Lounge will this year provide an exclusive area for VIP guests to take time out from the busy show floor, and the complimentary facilities available, including breakfast, lunch and refreshments.

Allowing attendees to plan ahead of the show and throughout is the My Event tool, scheduled to go live soon. Visitors and exhibitors can enhance their show experience by using My Event on their mobile or desktop to build their own itinerary. The tool enables attendees to create a personal list of must-see contacts and book meetings before and during the show, as well as earmarking key products and Taste of Travel sessions of interest.

Returning to the Hamburg Messe at WTCE 2018, the popular New Exhibitor Villages will be revamped and expanded, with four zones dedicated to first-time exhibitors across Halls A1-A4. These dedicated areas introduce airline, rail, cruise and coach operators to companies that have never before been showcased at the event.

WTCE’s What’s New Onboard showcase will also shine a spotlight on newly-launched products, bringing the latest innovations and new products launched to the market in the past 12 months to the Hamburg Messe.

Following on from a successful launch in 2017, the Focus on World Travel Retail will also return. This showcase for the onboard travel retail industry will unveil the products and services available for inflight purchases. A networking bar, sponsored by Heinemann Gebr., will also offer exhibitors and visitors a chance to catch up and sample the future of travel retail onboard through a series of branded networking sessions. A full schedule will be announced soon.

The Taste of Travel Theatre will also return, with more presentations, live chef demonstrations and new product launches. Attendance is free of charge and a full program will be announced in the coming months.

WTCE also joins the Passenger Experience Week line up, comprising four events in one destination: the Passenger Experience Conference, WTCE, Aircraft Interiors Expo (AIX) and, new to 2018, Passenger Technology Solutions. The new event focuses on the latest developments in passenger technologies, from mobile initiatives, IT solutions, to big data and analytics technology and payment technology supplier.

Passenger Experience Week will commence with the Passenger Experience Conference. It returns to Hamburg Messe on Monday, April 9 and offers attendees the chance to learn from industry experts and network at the Industry Networking Party, which kicks off as the conference closes. WTCE, AIX and Passenger Technology Solutions will open on Tuesday April 10, with exhibitors and visitors invited to attend a free networking opportunity at the WTCE 2018 Reception, sponsored by Heineken, held on the opening day from 5-7pm.

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About Author


Alasdair joined the team in 2015 and works across a number of titles and websites for UKi Media & Events. He has been a journalist for 10 years, covering everything from travel and technology to sport and entertainment, and brings a wealth of experience, and pedantry, to the team. Away from the office, he is a celebrated snood connoisseur, determined to cycle no matter what the weather decides to hurl from the sky, and driven by a quest to find the very finest, and more importantly the next, slice of cheesecake.

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