Italy showcased to the world: comprehensive and updated offering

Italy showcased to the world: comprehensive and updated offering

Bit Milano consolidated its key role as the global marketplace for the Italian offering. Growing demand for food and wine and outdoor experiences: from north to south, Italy responded with an updated and ever-broader offering. Exhibitors express enthusiasm for number of foreign attendees.

Increasingly international and receptive to the trends of the travel market as a whole, Bit succeeded in creating value with its mission to be the leading global marketplace for Italy’s travel offering; Italy confirmed its position as the preferred foreign destination in all main sectors of the tourism market, from food and wine to wellness, and from cultural tourism to local and outdoor tourism.


Exhibitors from all over the country responded to this trend and had the opportunity to present their regional offerings in the most effective way. Giovanni Chessa, Councillor for Tourism, Crafts and Trade for the Region of Sardinia commented: “The Region of Sardinia chose Bit to present itself in a new and innovative light, and it proved a good choice. This edition saw record footfall throughout the exhibition space, with excellent attendance from not only visitors but operators and the trade press as well. At Bit 2024 we wanted to showcase our region’s landscape in its broadest sense: culture, tradition, food, sea and inland areas, but above all nature and technology combined perfectly to recreate a three-dimensional forest that succeeded in transporting exhibition visitors to one of the world’s most beautiful areas.”


This enthusiasm was echoed by Carlo Tereo De Landerset, Head of the Region of Abruzzo’s Tourism Sector. He found that Bit was a unique opportunity to match Abruzzo's considerable nature and food and wine-based offering with strong foreign demand: "Bit is always a key event for operators and competitors to meet and talk. There was a great reaction to Abruzzo, with strong, growing interest from the American market and continued appeal in our European markets such as Switzerland, the United Kingdom, Germany and Norway. Nature-based tourism with our parks is particularly popular.”


Experiential slow, food and wine or outdoor-based tourism is in vogue in Europe and Italy. Eurostat-European Travel Commission 2023 data suggests that in the period from October 2023 to March 2024 around 21.7 million European tourists – or 17% of the total – favoured outdoor experiences. Meanwhile, 19.7 million – 16% of the total – opted for food-based experiences. The latest Enit-Touring Club Italiano study confirms this trend in Italy. Together with the increase in camping, glamping and resorts in Italy (which saw 9% growth in arrivals, with a 16% rise in the length of stays, ISTAT, 2023), there has been an increase in travellers preferring cycle and walking routes, with approximately 3.6 million partaking in this form of tourism, with 2.7 million favouring walking-only holidays. The Report into Italian Food and Wine Tourism (R. Garibaldi, 2023) also recorded around 9.6 million food and wine tourists in Italy in 2023, an increase of 37% over the 2016-2023 period.


Against this backdrop, Bit Milano showcased a country with much to offer. Italy’s updated and enhanced range of tourism offerings ran from north to south – from the landscapes of the Veneto to Basilicata’s “passion tourism”.


Federico Caner, Councillor for Tourism, Agriculture and EU Funds for the Region of Veneto explained that “Veneto has created new tourism products in recent years. It has also consolidated existing destinations: we extend from the Venetian coastline to Lake Garda via the Dolomites, which this year are also attracting attention in the lead-up to Milano-Cortina 2026.”


Antonio Nicoletti, Director of Apt Basilicata, concluded: "We took part in Bit because it is the first and main launchpad for the Italian tourist season and an important opportunity to promote our area. In this edition the attendance from an interested public and institutions was extraordinary. We welcomed our guests to a stand featuring drawings rather than photographs to emphasise the extraordinary and original relationship between nature and art in Basilicata.”