MATATO partners with TripAdvisor to evaluate nominees for Maldives Travel Awards

Maldives Association of Travel Agents and Tour Operators (MATATO) has partnered with world’s leading online travel platform TripAdvisor to evaluate nominees for the Maldives Travel Awards.

At the ongoing PATA Travel Mart in Macao, MATATO President Abdulla Ghiyas Riyaz and TripAdvisor’s Head of Destination Marketing for Asia Pacific Sarah Mathews signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), appointing TripAdvisor as a strategic partner and gold sponsor of Maldives Travel Awards and Maldives Travel Conference.

According to MATATO, TripAdvisor will be providing data and analytics based on reviews submitted by travellers who have visited the Maldives last year. Review ratings provided by TripAdvisor will be used to shortlist the nominees in each category representing tourist properties, it said.

“Data provided by TripAdvisor, which is filtered through millions of opinions, gives us the most authentic review of a property purely based on the traveler’s experience. The opportunity to have the access to this data strengthens the judging at rating process for the awards, giving us the integrity as an award that chosen by the travellers,” a statement issued by MATATO read.

Initiated in 2012 by MATATO, Maldives Travel Awards celebrate and honour the best tourism and hospitality products in the Maldives, while fostering relationships with suppliers and local travel agents. From 20 categories in 2012, the awards have now expanded into three editions totalling 55 categories.

This year, MATATO has for the first time branched out the prestigious awards into three categories; the People’s Edition, which recognises successful pioneers and long serving individuals in the tourism industry, a Guesthouse Edition, which celebrates the outstanding performance of the up and coming guesthouse sector, and the Gala Edition, which is exclusive for winners in the categories for resorts, airlines and liveaboards.

The non-profit will also combine the Gala Edition with the travel conference happening a day before at Bandos Maldives resort, bringing an international audience of industry experts.

As the first event held under the Maldives Travel Awards brand, Adaaran Select Hudhuranfushi hosted the People’s Edition on July 13, where 10 individuals were recognised for their immense contributions to the development of the Maldives tourism industry.

MATATO is now gearing up for the Guesthouse Edition, will be hosted during the Guesthouses Maldives Conference 2017 on September 23.

The association has also opened nominations for the Gala Edition, which would be held at Adaaran Select Hudhuranfushi in November.

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