I like to think that there is always a silver lining in every situation of life. Sometimes we just need to change the perspective of things and see opportunities.As a Portuguese and since I started Aurora Agency in 2018, I always had this idea of promoting Portugal as a tourism destination in the Middle East. However I thought that it would be rather difficult without the support of an institution. The fact that I know my country very well and I know what tourists from the Middle East expect when traveling, I thought that I could actually do it on my own. During the quarantine, I created a strategy, business plan, targets to achieve, the name and logo for it. I knew for a fact that there was a lot of Portuguese companies interested in the Middle East markets and on the other hand, the local travel agencies were interested in selling Portugal as a destination and are looking for support and know how. Emirates Airlines recently added a second daily flight to Lisbon and another one to the city of Porto. Qatar Airways has also added a flight to Lisbon which shows that there is a real interest in Portugal as a holiday destination. Portugal offers not only beautiful landscapes but also the best value for money in Europe, excellent gastronomy and has been voted for the second consecutive year as one of the safest countries in the world.
The Portuguese Association of Tourism for the Middle east is an association of Portuguese companies related to tourism, that are seeking cooperations with the travel sector in the Middle East to encourage tourists from this region to travel to Portugal. The association will support these companies to close agreements as well as helping them to position their brands in the Middle East and sell their products and services in the Gulf region. The association will also be supporting the travel sector in theMiddle east, with the right know how to sell Portugal as a destination, through webinars, workshops, sales calls, campaigns, roadshows etc. Memberships are now open to all Portuguese companies that want to be members of the association.We have recently been interviewed for a Portuguese radio channel about this project and as soon as we have the first members assigned we will update our website with all that information.
Maria Ines Amaral