February 28, 2019 | AITO – Association of Independent Tour Operators
The Specialist Travel Association (AITO, www.aito.com) has announced that the vibrant city of Wrocław (pronounced ‘vrots-wahf’), in south-west Poland, will be the destination for its 2019 Annual Overseas Conference, to be held from 21 – 24 November, 2019
Poland is one of Europe’s most accessible and affordable destinations and the country is keen to promote its on-trend cities as part of its many exciting options likely to appeal to the British traveller in 2019.
Wrocław, situated in Poland’s Lower Silesia region, is regarded as one of Europe’s hidden gems, with its rich history, a thriving cultural scene and beautiful architecture. The city is the perfect setting for the AITO conference and will provide tour operators and agents with an abundance of travel ideas in an exciting, alternative city break destination.
AITO Chairman, Derek Moore, says: “After an activity-packed 2018 mid-haul conference in Ras Al Khaimah, in 2019 we are heading short-haul, to Poland’s fourth-largest city, to explore its fascinating and turbulent past and its lively cultural centre.
“The lesser-known city of Wrocław has the perfect attributes for the AITO conference and we’re confident that our delegates will benefit from its authentic character, its stunning historic landmarks and striking modern structures, along with its good-value array of entertainment, bistros, bars and restaurants. Wrocław also offers quirky features such as the 200 bronze gnomes dotted around the city – symbols of a dark period of history in Poland – and the romantic ‘Hansel and Gretel’ buildings, which appear to hold hands.
“The Polish Tourism Organisation team has been extremely welcoming and supportive, and we’re delighted to be working with them and to be able to explore the exciting venues, sights and events that Wrocław has to offer.”
Iwona Bialobrzycka, UK Regional Director of the Polish Tourism Organisation, comments: “We are thrilled to be the host of AITO’s Overseas Conference this year. As the largest city of Lower Silesia, Wrocław is the region’s administrative, economic and cultural capital. Standing on twelve islands on the Odra River and its four tributaries, it is often called the Venice of the North. The city’s history is a wide mix of influences that speak of the varied cultural influences on a place that was, at different times, claimed by Prussia, Austria, Germany and, of course, Poland itself. It’s an academic centre with 22 institutions of higher learning and over 120,000 students, which means that the city boasts a dynamic array of nightlife and activities for visitors to enjoy, too.
Thanks to its history and entrepreneurial inhabitants, the city has become an open-minded, creative centre for international business and investment. It is one of the most rapidly developing hubs on the cultural map of Europe. Wrocław was European Capital of Culture in 2016 and it also hosted The World Games in 2017.”
Chair of AITO Agents, Gemma Antrobus, comments: “Wrocław offers attributes which our AITO Agents and their clients will love, whether seeking historical sights and Gothic architecture, beautiful gardens and pretty squares, or exciting theatres, festivals, lively nightlife and the buzz that comes with the large student community. Wrocław really delivers a city break with a difference.”
Delegates can fly direct from Luton or Stansted to Wrocław (both two-hour flights); alternatively, they can fly to Kraków or Katowice (again two-hour flights) and take the intercity train to Wrocław, or they can fly from Heathrow to Wrocław via Warsaw (a four-hour journey).
The AITO conference accommodation will be based at a five-star hotel in the city centre, a short walk from the Old Town Market Square and overlooking Słowacki Park and the surrounding National Museum, Architecture Museum, the Post & Communications Museum, and the Galeria Dominikańska shopping centre.
Most events and activities outside of the hotel will be a short walk away, apart from the Gala Farewell Dinner, which will be held in “an exciting and unexpected location”, says Derek Moore.
AITO’s Overseas Conference is aimed at business owners and senior managers, whether they’re running a travel agency or a tour operation, as well as Affiliate Business Partners and Tourist Offices. Featuring a mixture of inspiring speakers and breakout events, the business sessions aim to provide a thought-provoking day and a half, interlinked with evening events at interesting local venues.
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For more information on AITO’s 120-plus specialist travel companies and their unrivalled collection of holiday ideas, covering every corner of the world, visit the website at www.aito.com. All AITO members are fully bonded, comply with AITO’s Quality Charter and aim to offer the best possible customer service.
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About the Polish Tourism Organisation
The Polish Tourism Organisation (PTO) has several dozen national tourism offices operating around the world. The PTO’s objective is the promotion of Poland as a modern, accessible and affordable country offering tourists a high standard of services, expertly-run tours and unique locations. The PTO carries out work focused on the promotion and development of Polish tourism both at home and abroad.