GBTA and VDR wrapped up an eighth successful joint regional conference in Brussels today, bringing together more than 800 attendees from 22 countries for insights, collaboration, networking, and education under the guiding theme of (Re)Connect, (Re)Imagine, (Re)Create.
“The Europe conference has always reflected the best of what GBTA delivers in community, learning and advocacy to help attendees, our members, and the industry continue to get back to travel and back to business. It is more important than ever that we come together to design new strategies to create an industry ready for the future requirements of companies, travellers, and the planet,” said Catherine Logan, Regional Vice President, EMEA, GBTA.
Highlights from the event include:
Herald Ruijters, Director for Investment, Innovative and Sustainable Transport – DG Mobility and Transport, outlined how the European Commission is building the foundation for a sustainable future for travel in Europe, specifically around smart mobility, passenger rights, and investment in infrastructure.
GBTA CEO Suzanne Neufang moderated a cross-industry executive panel who shared their reflections and forthcoming plans in exploring the opportunities and challenges for business travel in a post-pandemic world.
In an interactive workshop – “The Big Idea: Travel and The Law of Attraction” – attendees re-imagined what the travel industry can, and needs, to do better to retain and attract talent. Breakout table discussions explored diversity and inclusion, modern technologies, traveller well-being, and sustainability.
Stéphane Vallageas, Capgemini, was the recipient of this year’s Luoma Award, established in 2011 to recognize volunteers who support the development of GBTA and its local market partners in Europe. For the first time, a GBTA Europe Lifetime Achievement Award was presented – to Lotten Fowler, General Manager of SBTA, the Swedish Business Travel Association.
Over 65 speakers and 18 highly curated education sessions were featured across topics such as sustainability; DE&I; travel risk management; strategic use of data; traveller care; digitalization; the future of meetings, and what’s ahead for payments.
More than 40 partner companies showcased solutions and services and nine companies announced their news, while the GBTA Europe Broadcast Studio hosted 36 executive interviews.
The event was preceded by GBTA’s first Global Sustainability Summit attracting nearly 300 experts, industry, and policy leaders to outline concrete solutions to decarbonise business travel, in alignment with the Paris Climate Goals.
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