PRESS RELEASE: Routes Europe aviation forum handed over to Bilbao

The annual Routes Europe air service development forum was officially handed over to the Basque city of Bilbao today (25 April) at a ceremony in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

Routes Europe brings together airlines, airports, tourism authorities, governments and other stakeholders to plan future air routes. The 2018 event will be hosted by the Basque Government and Basquetour at Bilbao Exhibition Centre. 

Bilbao is the gateway to the Basque Country, an autonomous region of northern Spain which includes the Basque Mountains, the Rioja Alavesa wine region, the resort town of San Sebastián and the beaches, estuaries, cliffs and villages that run along the Basque Coast.

The city’s emergence as a leading tourism destination began with the opening of the Guggenheim Museum in 1997. The museum of modern and contemporary art was the catalyst for the modernisation of the Biscay area and draws 1.2 million visitors a year.

The growth in tourism is reflected in the rising traffic levels at Bilbao Airport which handled 4.58 million passengers in 2016 (7.3% more than 2015). Traffic is also growing at the region’s smaller airports, San Sebastián and Vitoria-Gasteiz.

Routes Europe 2018 will give the hosts a platform to showcase the Basque Country’s attractions to some of the most influential people in the aviation industry.

Around 1,200 route development professionals from 116 airlines, 270 airports and 36 tourism authorities attended Routes Europe 2017 in Belfast, and Bilbao can expect similar attendance next year.

Steven Small, brand director of Routes, said: “Bilbao has been studied all over the world as destinations attempt to replicate its regeneration programme. Our delegates will be excited to explore the aviation opportunities in Bilbao and the wider Basque Country.”

The Basque Country’s Minister of Tourism, Trade and Consumer Affairs, Alfredo Retortillo said: “We are going to offer you our genuine hospitality, ancient traditions, modernity reflected in the titanium shields of the Guggenheim Museum and last but not least some of the most starred gastronomy all over the world. 

"I hope you will agree that this will be a good environment for businesses and route development.”

More information about Routes Europe can be found at routesonline.com

Routes Europe 2018, 22-24 April 2018, Bilbao Exhibition Centre, Bilbao, Basque Country, Spain.

 

-ENDS-

 

Notes to Editors

  • Routes events are unique forums dedicated to the development of new air services. They revolve around pre-scheduled meetings, an exhibition and a conference. Five ‘regional’ route development forums are held between February and June in the Americas, Asia, Europe and Africa, with the flagship World Routes event taking place in September.
  • Routes events are organised by UBM plc. UBM is the largest B2B event organiser in the world. Our 3,750+ people, based in more than 20 countries, serve more than 50 different sectors. Our deep knowledge and passion for these sectors allow us to create valuable experiences which enable our customers to succeed. Please visitubm.com for the latest news and information about UBM. 

 

For further information contact:

Karen Reeves

Communications & Content Marketing Manager

Routes, UBM EMEA

T: +44 (0)161 234 2721

M: +44 (0)796 6405 105

E: Karen.Reeves@ubm.com


 Routes Europe 2018

Routes Europe 2018
Bilbao, Basque Country • 22 - 24 April 2018

With 45 meeting slots and unlimited networking opportunities, the event is your opportunity to engage in business-focused discussions with Europe's key decision makers. Confirmed speakers include Alex Cruz, chairman and chief executive of British Airways. 

Register now

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