Maine Office of Tourism and Maine Businesses Attend International Tourism Summit

Nearly two dozen Maine businesses and the Maine Office of Tourism are back from Boston and the Discover New England’s 17th Annual Tourism Summit and International Marketplace.

Discover New England is the only trade show dedicated to New England organizations looking to increase business from overseas travelers. "The Summit is an excellent opportunity to share Maine information directly with tour operators whose customers are booking U.S. vacations. Tourism plays a huge role in Maine’s economic engine and it is important we promote our tourism industry," said Maine Office of Tourism Director Carolann Ouellette.

At the DNE International Marketplace, New England travel suppliers have the opportunity to participate in one-on-one meetings with international buyers. For New England, there is nothing else like it – a highly cost-effective trade conference dedicated entirely to New England. More than 80 tour operators and press from 10 countries, including the U.K., Germany, France, Italy, Canada and Japan, attended.

“Discover New England is the right tool to market Maine to the rest of the world. The collaboration between all six New England states to market our 'New England' brand just makes sense, and Maine is able to get a fair share of business from our international markets,” said Bob Smith, owner of Sebasco Harbor Resort.

The U.S. Office of Travel & Tourism reports over 1.6 million overseas travelers come to the New England region each year. “I was very impressed with the Summit. We had the opportunity to meet with tour operators from all our key international markets. International visitors are extremely important to a destination like ours because they aren’t weather dependent and their average stay is longer than our domestic visitors,” said Chris Fogg, executive director of the Bar Harbor Chamber of Commerce.

Discover New England is the official tourism organization representing the New England region, and is a non-profit cooperative marketing entity funded by all six New England states. The primary mission is to increase tourism to the region from overseas markets, with a particular focus on the core markets of the U.K., Ireland and Germany.

"We want to direct these travelers to destinations, properties and attractions in Maine and attending this marketplace is putting us in a position to reach this important market segment," Ouellette said.