While TRENZ is a fantastic opportunity for many of our export-ready tourism businesses, there are some sectors which have formed their own Trade Shows, to focus specifically on their products. One of those is our own Māori Tourism Trade Day (MTTD).
The event provides us with an opportunity to build and strengthen relationships with one another, pass on knowledge and networks, and to promote the depth and breadth being offered by, in particular our newer, export ready Maori tourism experiences to our trade partners. It’s the essence of what we have that brings alive our foreshore, mountains, ravines, rivers, forests and glaciers in numerous other countries.
Māori Tourism Trade Day is now in its fourth year, and has become a permanent fixture in the calendars of trade, media, and Māori tourism businesses.
A strong aspect of NZ Māori Tourism’s brief is to support the growth and sustainability of our sector – simple words but a huge agenda. With that in mind, this year we recruited the support of our Tuakana – our businesses who have been around a while with a dearth of experience, and willing to impart their knowledge and expertise. The very people who are going to tell it as it is without the PC waffle.
We also introduced an ‘Observer’ status; those who aren’t quite export ready and include those thinking about entering Tourism either as potential operators or investors. If they didn’t have a sense of the commitment required they sure do now!
We have a saying in Māori ‘Kāore te kumara e kōrero mō tōna ake reka – the kumara doesn’t talk about how sweet it is’. However, it was fabulous to be amongst such a highly motivated group where we had a fantastic collective of Māori tourism experiences ranging from fly fishing, guided walks, rongoa (traditional Māori medicine), waka trips, horse treks, marae stays, cultural tours, dive adventures, canyoning and bespoke tours to name a few.
This year we had a range of tourism businesses and speakers, intended to provide some thought-provoking discussions, and an opportunity to connect with organisations and people that they may otherwise not have close contact with.
The tourism calendar is full of events around the country, and internationally – our tourism experiences are pressed for time and resources to attend them all and yes, we’ve added another one. Is it time to look at how we better align ourselves so our businesses, the trade and ultimately out manuhiri are better served?
Just a thought.
Pania Tyson-Nathan, Chief Executive
NZ Māori Tourism