Singapore

Singapore holds first physical trade show since February

Hybrid event TravelRevive made possible with new safety measures, also features virtual conference

Travel and tourism players yesterday welcomed Singapore's - and the Asia- Pacific's - first physical trade show since the Covid-19 outbreak, a key step towards having more such trade shows held here.

TravelRevive, a two-day trade show being held at Sands Expo and Convention Centre until today, was made possible with the introduction of new safety measures to help ensure the health and safety of exhibitors and attendees alike.

It is the first pilot trade show to be held in Singapore under the newly developed hybrid event trade show prototype for safe business events, safe itineraries and digital enabler tools, as part of a collaboration under one of the Emerging Stronger Taskforce's Alliance for Action groups.

This prototype is for larger events with more attendees than the limit of 250 imposed for meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions (Mice) events for which the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) continues to accept pilot applications.

The Alliance for Action team that has been tasked with bringing back travellers aims to take steps to re-establish Singapore's lead as a Mice destination and maintain the country's position as one of the top 10 cities in the world by international visitor traffic.

The TravelRevive hybrid event, with its trials of Mice safety measures, is intended to pave the way for more international trade shows to be held here in the first quarter of next year.

It is the first physical trade show here since the Singapore Airshow in February.

The hybrid event also features virtual conferences.

Close to 1,000 attendees and exhibitors are expected on-site at TravelRevive, including some 65 foreign delegates from 14 countries. The organisers are STB and Messe Berlin (Singapore).

A total of 36 exhibition booths were set up, with each exhibitor getting a dedicated meeting pod. These booths and pods are equipped with plexi-glass panels, which enable face-to-face discussions to be held safely.

As part of safe management measures, attendees were separated into cohorts of 20 and interactions were limited across groups. They were also given TraceTogether tokens to facilitate contact tracing.

Foreign delegates and some local attendees and exhibitors were required to take antigen rapid tests yesterday.

STB executive director for exhibitions and conferences Andrew Phua explained that different testing approaches are being used for the various Mice events.

"For each pilot event, we work closely with the Ministry of Health. It's really quite customised in (seeing what is) the best way and best approach to test... and at the same time, ensure that everybody is tested safely and business events can be held in a safe and trusted manner," he said, adding that about 500 people will be tested each day at TravelRevive.

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