Working groups provide opportunity for ETOA’s members and partners to cooperate on issues to do with the business environment for tourism in Europe. They are topic or destination focused. Activities can range from in-person meetings to ad hoc consultation and information sharing.
Their composition is not fixed and expressions of interest are welcome. We try to ensure access to insight from various business models and origin markets, and specialist expertise where applicable. For destination-focused groups, representatives from members’ local offices are especially valuable.
We also run online ‘Drop-Ins’ which are open to any member who wishes to join. ETOA to provide an informal briefing to members on a specific topic, who can ask questions and connect with each other. We notify members of these via email, and on the Events page.
If you would like to participate, or suggest someone from your company who might be a good fit, please contact us. Most groups benefit from management and market perspectives as well as detailed operational knowledge or specific expertise. They are coordinated by the ETOA team with local support.
All groups are run as a safe space to share information and ideas and collaborate on non-commercial operational issues. Candour and confidence is encouraged, as is participation from suitable individuals of any seniority. ETOA’s in-house bandwidth is limited, so support on specific initiatives and projects may be invited.
Active working groups
Group Tourism: This is the core business of many of ETOA’s operator members, and it remains poorly understood. Coach tourism is under-appreciated as a low-emission form of collective transport which is capable of bringing visitor spend to all parts of Europe. This group acts as a reality-check for the in-house team to ensure we’re focusing on what affects members the most, and prioritising correctly. Even if we can’t change the situation, we can provide accurate, actionable information. It may also identify what activity needs more focused effort, and provide feedback on ETOA’s online resources, especially Operating in Europe.
Attractions and Ticketing: a small group is currently working on good practice in distribution, whose purpose includes raising travel-trade literacy among attractions, many of which are not run primarily as commercial operations. This will help explain B2B operations to officials and attractions whose industry knowledge is limited, and support the interest of both operators and destinations who want to diversify product, optimise capacity and improve visitor flow. We will provide updates here and on the Attractions and Ticketing page.
Much of the regulatory competence affecting day-to-day operations in Europe is exercised at a sub-national level, for example: city access arrangements, overnight taxes and group size restrictions are often decided by regional or municipal authorities. National museums may cause booking and ticketing challenges, but they are all part of a local tourism ecosystem. We aim to develop more constructive and collaborative relationships with destinations, and align interests where possible: over 90 local and regional DMOs are ETOA members.