More and more people all over the world can enjoy the fascination of travelling. As a result, tourism has become a mainstay of many national economies. But at tourist hotspots the limits of quantitative growth have been reached. But there are largely unexploited qualitative growth potentials.


Experience the future of tourism

Tourism is capital intensive and expensive. A high level of infrastructure utilisation is therefore at the centre of efforts. The motto is: not more and more tourists in the already full peak season, but better distribution throughout the year and new business models in order to be able to use tourist brands more widely – also outside of tourism.

But perhaps the greatest growth potential lies in a new understanding of travel that makes digitalization possible: travel without traveling and encounters with people without really meeting them physically. The necessary technologies are already available today and are widespread in other industries such as e-sports and gaming. A threat scenario for airlines and hotels? At least in part, even if physical travel will hardly disappear.

Track Chair

Andreas Deuber

Head of Tourism, Institute for Tourism and Leisure ITF, University of Applied Sciences, Chur, Switzerland

The more industrialised tourism becomes, the more boring it becomes. The attraction of the individual is more and more lost in the package offers, hardly any offer is still unique but everything is standardized and repetitive. More and more people are looking for a new travel experience without having to struggle at overcrowded airports and hectic passport controls. Is virtual space the new tourist destination?



Session 1

What tourism can learn from gaming and e-sport

While in the past the physical coming together of people was indispensable, in the last 20 years, a completely new area of playing has established itself: The Virtual Game.

These are either completely new games that only work in the digital world (such as POKÉMON GO), or digital adaptations of traditional games (such as hide and seek, maze, war games, etc.).

Gamers either sit together in large halls and play against like-minded people on the other side of the globe, or they are physically isolated but networked with their fellow players.

The session deals with the question of what digital games can do today, which are the decisive “features” of successful digital games and which developments can be expected in the future.

Session 2

Sustainable growth in tourism

Tourist destinations are physical spaces of experience, created from performance contributions of different actors, which together represent an attractive offer for guests. Certain destinations today pursue distinct brand strategies and try to anchor themselves in the minds of their guests through certain ‘messages’, such as a certain lifestyle. Such techniques are becoming increasingly important in saturated markets.

Session 3

What tourism can learn from e-sex

Sex is one of those activities that traditionally requires the presence of two or more people. And yet:

Today the topic is “Technology-mediated sexual interaction and relationships” (TMSI).

Digital instruments have led sexuality into new spheres that are inconceivable in the analogue and non-networked world. Particularly interesting in this context are offers that ultimately make direct physical contact superfluous.

The session will show what degree of realism is technically achievable today, and will explore the question of whether virtual techniques can completely replace the real thing.

Session 4

What tourism can learn from IKEA

The session explains how strong destination brands (e.g. St. Moritz) could also be used outside tourism in the digital age. IKEA serves as an example from another industry.

Right from the start, the company did not see itself as a conventional furniture store, but as a total shopping experience. Today, IKEA cooperates with companies such as Sonos and Adidas and can actually serve as a sales platform for almost everything.

Track Speakers

Track chair

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