STAY WYSE Amsterdam 2023 wrap-up
Braving the Dutch winter, STAY WYSE Amsterdam delegates came together this week in the historic Beurs van Berlage for two days of trading, networking and educational sessions.
Wednesday evening marked the official start of the conference with the welcome drinks hosted by sponsor Hans Brinker. The recently renovated hostel provided an ideal backdrop for members of the hostel and accommodation industry to mingle, catch-up and get to know each other.
Delegates were warmly welcomed to the first day of trading by David Chapman, Director General of WYSE Travel Confederation. An interesting presentation on paving the way towards a more sustainable travel industry followed, delivered by Thijs de Groot of Netherlands Board of Tourism and Conventions (NBTC).
Business appointments, sponsored by JO&JOE, got off to a bang. With hundreds of appointments scheduled over the course of the two days, the trade hall was bustling as delegates got down to business.
Two sessions followed in the afternoon – after a quick update from Euroventure‘s Phil Cabra Netherton on the Refugee Travel initiative. Trip.com’s Gulce Karsli Rozenveld addressed the relationship between OTAs and hostels and how this may evolve in the future and Contiki’s Adam Armstrong discussed the changes the pandemic has brought about with regards to how young people travel and what they are now looking for when booking trips.
Thursday wrapped up with an infamous Generator party, complete with 90s tunes, retro sweets and glowsticks.
The second day of trading may have begun with a few sore heads, but business appointments were buzzing. Three educational sessions followed – with speakers representing three continents. Thanks to Adrie Vreeke of Capsule Services for his insights on solo travel, Apichaya Wongsuwan of The Dearly Koh Tao for her talk on hybrid hostels and Alejandro Osorio of Viajero Hostels for his interesting presentation on how to grow without losing your brand essence.
A few takeaways:
- Turn a challenge into an opportunity – even people. Thanks to Alejandro Osorio of Viajero Hostels for his anecdote about turning the ‘worst receptionist’ into an excellent guide. Alnother key takeaway from Alejandro – double-down on local flavour; maintain the soul of your hostel whilst you evolve.
- If you want to do something, do it – you’ll figure it out. Thanks to Phil Cabra Netherton, Euroventure and GOAT Roadtrip, for this one. And he’s right; GOAT Roadtrip is proof of that.
- Business might be good, but loyalty goes both ways (a ‘Viajero’ tattoo, anyone?).
- Solo travel is also social travel.
Thank you to all our sponsors for their support of the conference.
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