World's First: On-Line Tourism

A world's first: Israel's Tourism Ministry goes live with a virtual on-line tourism fair to market Israel worldwide.

Hillel Fendel , | updated: 7:08 PM

Israel news photo (file)

The first virtual on-line tourism fair of its type will go live on Tuesday, April 13. An initiative of Israel's Tourism Ministry, the fair will operate in both Russian and English via an internet site designed to market Israel tourism to Russian-speaking audiences around the world.

“The world’s first virtual on-line tourism fair is another innovative element in the Tourism Ministry’s comprehensive marketing framework," Tourism Minister Stas Misezhnikov said, smiling broadly, "and represents a breakthrough in the use of the Internet as a marketing tool in the world of tourism.”
The virtual fair simulates a visit to a real fair in which the booths, audience, attractions and atmosphere all operate on-line. The visitor enters the main hall housing the exhibitors’ booths, and there obtains information, makes business contacts, is exposed to new products and takes part in panels with other travel trade professionals.
The fair will be accessible on-line for two months, during which special activities will take place. For the first three days, the Tourism Minister will be available to chat with the visitors, and an address by the Head of the Russian Patriarchate in Jerusalem will be featured. Russian Tourism Ministry chief Netta Peleg will lead an on-line seminar on the subject of Russian tourism to Israel. Even after the fair closes, visitors will still be able to enter the site and correspond with the exhibitors by email. 
Twelve Israeli and Russian exhibitors have chosen to buy a virtual booth at the fair, including Ahava, Assaf HaRofeh Hospital, Crown Plaza-Holiday Inn, Dan Hotels, El Al, Haifa Municipality, Nazarene Tours, Mini-Israel, and Russian Express.
The fair is aimed at Russian-speakers the world over, and follows the tourism fair that took place in Moscow in March. Russia is now the second-largest source country for incoming tourism to Israel, after the U.S.
The virtual fair will be accessible online at beginning this Tuesday.