Portuguese participation increases at the annual BTL.jpg

Portuguese participation increases at the annual BTL

PUSHING PORTUGAL as a varied holiday destination for all tastes, ages and persuasions was the strategy at the 19th Bolsa de Turismo de Lisboa (BTL).

Each of the various Portuguese câmaras were represented with their own stands showcasing tourism, amenities, activities, scenery, cuisine and wine, with historical and cultural highlights available in each region in the pavilion entitled Destinos de Portugal.

The impressive entrance hall of Sala Uma (pavilion one), was dominated by an impressive tunnelled walkway of fluorescent light advertising Greater Lisbon and what it has to offer the holidaymaker.

Natural parks, such as Peneda de Geres and Sera da Estrela were also highlighted, as were the Minho, Douro Valley, Porto and the North, Alentejo, Algarve, Azores and Madeira spread out over a 19,000 square metre site (37 per cent of the total area) with 525 exhibitors.


Despite the recession, Portuguese holidaymakers are continuing to choose exotic destinations for their annual escapes. However, Portugal was eight per cent up on 2005 in terms of foreign visitors, representing seven billion euros.

It is expected that Portugal will earn 15 billion euros from tourism between 2007 and 2015, while low cost airlines such as Ryanair and easyJet hope to fly 2.14 million passengers to and from Portugal in 2007.

Brazil and Spain both had equally impressive stands dominating the central area of the international pavilion, which together with Portugal accounted for one-quarter of the total fair. The space was dominated by tourism bureaux from foreign countries, airlines, travel agents and tour operators.

In the multi destination pavilion, (28 per cent of the total), the accent was on service providers and suppliers to the tourism and catering industry, including hotel services, catering equipment, transport services, associations and official entities.


An area was also set aside for tourism business, presentations, talks, seminars, meetings, incentives and initiatives, congresses and events. (16 per cent).

The Bolsa de Turismo de Lisboa is Portugal’s largest national tourism fair and a showcase for tourism professionals to drum up business, show off what they have to offer, as well as offering an opportunity for exhibitors to meet one another, network, set up business meetings or simply meet and greet the public and give them ideas for where to spend their forthcoming holidays.

Sandra Almeida, BTL organiser said: “We’ve noticed that our exhibitors and participants are extremely loyal and come back year after year and, with more and more foreign delegations we are now one of the most important tourism industry fairs in Europe, having grown 11 per cent this year compared with 2006, with 1,000 exhibitors compared with 903 last year.”

Do you have a view on this story? Email: [email protected]