From the 7th of March on there will be a Blogger Base Lounge in the "movie theatre at the Marshall Haus in the middle of the exhibition grounds". And today an "ITB Blogger Speed Dating event will take place [...] from 4.30 to 6 p.m. at the CityCube in Hall B."
The organizers even prepared A Blogger’ Speed Dating - Knigge for all the potential participants. ("Knigge" stands for an "etiquette manual" or "handbook of manners", or "Emily Post" :-).
As a journalist, it is not acceptable to be pampered by any of these organizations ore brands or institutions. But as a blogger and renowned influencer  it is of interest, to find out, how these new means of communications will be used and exploited. This is why at the end of this page you will find a series of interviews and two panorama-photos taken on this occasion.
These following Events / Press Conferences were selected so far 
11:00 - 11:45 Mekong Forum: Collaborative Social Commerce & User-Generated Storytelling Convention Hall 4.1, Room Regensburg
Born out of the need for innovative and cost-effective sales and marketing initiatives to promote the six countries and its tourism destinations of the Greater Mekong Subregion (Cambodia, PR China, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Thailand & Viet Nam), the public-private partnership framework Destination Mekong, strategically aligned with the secretariat of the Tourism Working Group of the governments of the Greater Mekong Subregion, created the globally unique collaborative social commerce platform MekongMoments.com. Beta-launched at ITB Asia 2017 in Singapore, the initiative that is founded by six private and six public sector organizations, and developed by UNWTO Affiliate Member Chameleon Strategies, has gained traction with over 6,000 businesses listed and over 30,000 shared visual experiences tagged with #MekongMoments aggregated from social media in just three months. The platform enables any organization regardless of type and size to run their own social media campaign, and get an expandable and customizable digital presence. Learn how collaborative social commerce can transform tourism marketing in the Southeast Asia, by building capacity for businesses of any size and type, driving sales, promoting the destinations, and developing a powerful social CRM, data intelligence, and loyalty engagement platform at the same time.
— Jens Thraenhart, Executive Director, Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office
— Gerrit Krueger, Operations Manager, Destination Mekong
— Puppub Ongsiirikul Niddin, General Manager, Nam Kat Yor La Pa Resort, Lao PDR
— Dr. Ha Van Sieu, Vice Chair, Viet Nam National Administration of Tourism
— Visothy So, Undersecretary of State, Ministry of Tourism of Cambodia
— May Myat Mon Win, Chair, Myanmar Tourism Federation
This is a follow-up meeting to the first encounter last year, documented on this platform as well: "ITB: Die Welt am Mekong be-suchen"
At this occasion, a first interview was made with Jens Thraenhart. And as a follow-up reaction to this encounter, the decision was taken to prepare a trip to Thailand, Laos, and Cambodia in November 2017. This tour was not sponsored by any of these organizations but prepared with the excellent support of First Travel Cambodia .
The whole tour was documented day by day. And on these two pages you’ll find a kind of country report and a list of all the links established during these days:
Reisenotizen. Rückblicke und Ausblicke
Reisebilder im Rückblick
In the afternoon we were invited to have a first look at the MekongMinis and at this occasion, these interviews were made with:
Jens Thraenhart, Executive Director, Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office:
May Myat Mon Win, Chair, Myanmar Tourism Federation and Ms. Su Su Tin, Myanmar Tourism Marketing Advisor:
Visothy So, Under Secretary of State, Ministry of Tourism, Kingdom of Cambodia
11:00 Keynote: The Evolution Of Airbnb And How Global Travel Is Changing Convention Hall 7.1b, Auditorium London
12:00 Oberammergau Passion Play 2020: A village lives for its play Großer Stern, VIP room 2 (fairground)
The room on the upper floor of the "Grosser Stern" was packed. On the internet there is nothing yet about the state-of-planning for the next festival in 2020. So it was quite interesting beeing informed by all the major players and institutions on this occasion. After the official part, we mingled together will all the representatives present. And Christian Stückl agreed to take part in a quite challenging interview that is presented here - in German language:
13:00 The State Of Travel Blogging - Partnerships That Drive Value And ROI Hall 7.1c, eTravel Lab
This session explores how travel bloggers drive value and generate a higher Return On Investment (ROI) beyond content creation and audience engagement. Whether you are a DMO or a travel brand looking to work with travel influencers, this session will provide, through a variety of case studies, insights into the many creative partnerships and concepts that travel bloggers are developing to generate value for the tourism industry. Speakers:
— Melvin Böcher, CEO, Travel Dudes
— Keith Jenkins, CEO, iambassador
13:30 Influencer Marketing And Blogging Law Hall 7.1c, eTravel Lab
Impact Analytics, contract design and the management of touristic influencers in Germany and Europe. Legal security in media and labor law for first movers and imitators in the “influencer marketing” dynamic growth market.
— Peter Hense, Lawyer & Partner, Kanzlei Spirit Legal LLP
— Dr. Jonas Kahl, Lawyer, Kanzlei Spirit Legal LLP
14:00 Meeting place For Digital Nomads – Opportunities For The Tourism Industry Hall 7.1c, eTravel Lab
Digital nomads travel throughout the world and get their work done on the road. Their goals and activities are determined by new parameters. The tourism industry should react by emphasizing personal experiences and open access. A field report from Poland.
— Tobias Kremkau, Coworking Manager, St. Oberholz/Berlin
14:00 ITB CEO Interview: Mark Okerstrom, Expedia’s New CEO, One-On-One With Philip C. Wolf Convention Hall 7.1b, Auditorium London
This "fireplace chat" will be documented on the ITB-side, for sure. Very professional and quite frank. At not only blowing the horn for Expedia.
14:25 Wellness Programs For Seniors 65+ – A Growing Market Convention Hall 7.1a, Auditorium New York 3
In view of the aging population in many countries, the interest of operators to develop wellness programmes for the senior 65+ market is increasing. Sam Foster has designated a network called FLOURISH (Due to a particularly suitable environment people can get healthy and age-appropriate develop) founded that specializes in healthy aging (not anti-aging) and concentrated as a guide for creating these programmes serve:
F - Free from diseases (diagnostics and therapy) L - Life attitude
O - Outlook, positive attitude to life (emotional health)
U - Understanding / cognitive function (mental health and brain function) R - Resilience and rest (relaxation therapy + sleep)
I - Independence: physical (mental) and emotional (relationships) S - Social Environment & Support
H - Hobbies, interests and leisure activities
As part of the ITB Expert Forum Wellness, Sam Foster reports on her network.
Speaker: Samantha Foster, Director, Destination Spa Management
An excellent presentation. And we had the chance for a little conversation thereafter. There were many points of mutual interest and it was therefore decided to keep this for us and to do no interview.
We skipped this event and joined the Blogger Speed Dating event instead. Sometimes you have to make a choice...
As it is mentioned on the website:
Speed Dating is a series of pre-scheduled meetings between representatives from the travel industry (destinations, attractions, hotels, public relations agencies, etc.) and accredited travel blogger. The meetings are of short duration (8 minutes) encouraging both parties to focus on their objectives and to establish business relations.
And it is true: There were not many representatives from Asian countries or organizations present. But there were many participants willing to answer this simple question: Why they have registered as exhibitors to join this event and if their expectations have been met. The choice was by pure chance. And there was no obligation to present the organization or their name in the context of this interview: