Natas travel fair to focus more on visitor experience

The crowd at Natas' last travel fair held in March.
The crowd at Natas' last travel fair held in March. PHOTO: NATAS TRAVEL

SINGAPORE - The National Association of Travel Agents Singapore (Natas) travel fair is moving away from being a "bargain centre" for cheap deals.

It will instead focus on enriching the visitor's in a bid to set itself apart from rival fairs, said the association's new executive director Steven Lek.

The next Natas fair will take place from July 31 to Aug 2 at Singapore Expo halls 3B and 4. Admission is free.

The Natas fair will be held after this weekend's Travel Revolution fair organised by the Singapore Outbound Travel Agents Association, formed in May by a breakaway group of agencies unhappy with Natas.

Admission to the July 24 to 26 fair at the Sands Expo and Convention Centre is also free. It will feature 77 exhibitors, of which 37 are travel agencies.


In a press conference on Wednesday, Mr Lek said the tensions between both groups was a "family dispute".

"Natas is focusing on the experience. The main focus (of Travel Revolution) appears to many as just racking up sales," said Mr Lek, who took up the post on June 15 and previously spent 30 years with Singapore Airlines Group.

"We'll also be showcasing more cultural performances and international cuisine. Numbers (of exhibitors) and physical size (of the fair) alone do not make a good travel fair."

Of the 83 exhibitors at the Natas fair, 22 are travel agencies.

The rest include airlines, hotels and other travel-related businesses and first-time exhibitor Tan Tock Seng Hospital which will be raising awareness for travel-related health matters and vaccinations.

Natas aims to attract 55,000 visitors over the three-day fair, which was the estimated attendance of its last fair in March.