In January 2017 we recieved an invitation to attend in the World Tourism Forum as Iranian Bloggers/digital influencers. the invitation named Mr.Jack Straw (the former UK home secretary) as the main speaker. our first reaction was : It’s a spam email! Why they want Saboktar to attend alongside these high profile people? we could not believe that BloggerCasting could reach us out since we were bloggers only for 6 months now! but our name is already everywhere including the global press (like BBC) and also on marketing agencies databases. This event brings people from all sectors of the tourism industry together to discuss the future of travel and tourism.So we replied to email and start chatting with the organizer of the event to say Yes! we are so excited to be in Istanbul for this reason. Here you could see our Video that we contributed to event from Tehran:
We arrived on 15th Feb in Istanbul. The forum was last 16th – 17th of February, 2017 filled with loads of amazing conferences about travel. There were so many different names in travel and hospitality sectors. It was a great truly a great experience to be a part of this forum. We really like the W Hotel actually because the staff is always polite, the hotel is chic and oh we were upgraded, so thanks for that W! As more and more bloggers arrived from all over the world, our excitement levels rose and we became aware of just how huge this event actually is. People flew in from South Africa, Morocco, Canada, USA, India, Portugal, Spain and Italy (to name a few countries), 48 Bloggers from all around the world to attend, or partake in this event. This is how we start our journey and how we spend our first day in Istanbul:
February 16th was the opening ceremonies of the World Tourism Forum. It also marked the first time that we as Saboktar team attended in such a world-class event.A couple of the main speeches (Turkey Prime minister) were in Turkish, so we should use a translating machine to hear the speeches in English. We received our “participant” badges and made our way around the huge ICC(Istanbul Conferance Center) Most of the companies and brands in attendance were high-end resorts and hotel chains, as well as some advertisement companies and Turkish Airlines. We really enjoyed connecting with bloggers who we have followed for many years. In the other part of the convention centre, there was also various open discussions about the different forms of Tourism, the influence of politics and media, PR and marketing, technology, blogging and the digital tourism. Each topic was spearheaded by the leading experts in the field.It was so difficult to choose which one you want to participate. but we were four! decided to divide the sections among ourselves.
We also went around Istanbul with the awesome tour company and restaurants in the city. Sonradan Gurmeler, a private travel specialist, showed us around the Istanbul. One of the popular tours of the company following the footsteps of the famous turkish food so called “Chikofteh”. Our experienced guide Ece took us to a traditional kebab house, their kebab is to die for! Istanbul is a city you would never get bored of. no matter how many times you go there;you will definitely find something interesting for yourself. this tour was designed so smart and adventurous, this is highly recommended.plus walking in Istanbul streets felt so safe just like we were in Tehran streets. Let’s go and have some fun with the video about amazing city Istanbul:
A big thank you to Murat and his team for coordinating all of us bloggers and for planning some really fun events! Another huge thank you to Turkish Airlines for flying us roundtrip, and to the W Hotel for putting us up And of course, thank you to the World Tourism Forum for putting on the event and for acknowledging the value in Travel Bloggers.