The Destination Think team is pleased to release this white paper that addresses international tourism offices: Will international tourism offices remain relevant?: Your roadmap for the future

If you are reading this, you recognize that destination marketing is changing fast. New technology and shifting consumer behaviour have forced destination marketing organizations (DMOs) like yours to meet new visitor demands. Like many others, your DMO may also be facing foundational questions about the nature of its new role. Widespread uncertainty is making marketers wonder how their organization will keep up over the long term.

International tourism offices (ITOs) face similar challenges. Some, like those of Chicago, Malaysia and Romania, are closing their doors. ITOs are struggling to overcome budget shortfalls, coordinate strategy with DMO head offices, and adapt to build destination advocacy through word of mouth. Will they find their new role?

A new role for the ITO

At Destination Think, we believe that ITOs will have a vital part to play as new DMO models emerge. To create this white paper, we surveyed over 70 ITOs across the globe, from Aruba to Japan to Sweden. Using the data, our destination marketing strategy team has outlined the current state of the ITO. This will allow you to see how your ITO compares to other foreign offices.

In response to the current state of the ITO, our strategy team has also outlined a roadmap to help your ITO and its DMO head office understand today’s opportunities.

Why read this white paper?

Download this white paper to:

  • Find out how ITOs are spending their time and money, and how your ITO compares,
  • Learn about a path forward that can help your ITO overcome today’s challenges,
  • Find out how Visit Victoria’s U.K. office has followed this path to find greater success with its trade partners and campaigns while building valuable advocacy for the destination, and
  • Improve your ITO’s strategy into 2018 and beyond.  

Click here to download Will international tourism offices remain relevant? Your roadmap for the future

international tourism offices white paper

Featured image credit: Giuseppe Milo, Flickr


  1. Paul Nursey

    I also believe that ITOs have a vital role to play for certain destinations, particularly at the national level. Integration with HQ is an operational matter, not a strategic matter, can be sorted out. The key point is that each destination will have different strategic and business objectives based on where it is on its development curve. Their business strategy will have particular channel weightings based on what it needs to achieve at any moment . ITOs can have a critical role to play in B2B relationships and staying close to certain customer groups such as local trade, media, and influencers. If these customer groups are important in the business plan then they deserve great service from an ITO. Now it is also important for ITOs to realize the scrutiny they are under in this day and age and ensure they are well aligned with and supporting their HQ.

    • William Bakker

      Thanks Paul, you are right of course that every DMO is different and so is every market. That’s why it’s important to be strategic and really analyze the best way to address the specific challenges in the path-to-purchase and finding the best way to address them in order to meet specific objectives. Happy New Year!

  2. stanton carter

    One the challenges I think ITOs and DMOs will face in the future will be Product Distribution. So far we have seen the emergence of vertical intergrated tour companies which seem to operate independent of ITOs and DMOs. There are also airline tour companies which deal only with hotels of their choice. About the only action ITOs and DMOs can take is to participate in tour operators trade shows or place a destination advertisement in the tour operators product catalogues . The end result of the tour operators activities is that some hotels are never promoted to consumers and travel trade in some markets, The obvious question this situation raises is what action should ITOs and DMOs take respecting hotels not including tour operators programmes. To attempt to ensure all hotels on destinations receive equal promotional treatment, should DMOs establish tour companies to level the playing field to allow for product distribution?? . It would interesting to hear your comments.


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