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Destination Lot-et-Garonne: tourism stakeholders gathered in Buzet-sur-Baïse

For the first meeting of its kind organized by the Lot-et-Garonne Departmental Tourism Committee, it was a success: in partnership with Albret Tourisme, Destination Agen, the Val de Garonne tourist office, the town hall of Buzet and the Cave des Vignerons, about 200 tourism stakeholders gathered this Tuesday, May 10 at the multipurpose hall of Buzet.

The morning was devoted to conferences around two topical themes: online marketing and sustainable tourism. The first theme was introduced by Valérie Tonin, president of the Comité du Tourisme 47. “73% of bookings are made on the internet. Our department is still a little behind. The CDT must help isolated players who have difficulties with digital technology”. Elloha, which received the 2022 innovation prize awarded by the World Tourism Organization, is a company that provides tools in this direction. “Visibility on the web is essential” assures the manager of Elloha. “the goal is to bring the visitor to the page allowing the reservation. Google remains our No. 1 ally because it registers a reservation for 22 visits on average. Then, it is necessary to facilitate the stays by proposing other activities. For this, it is useful to create a good network. Finally, do not neglect the new means of payment”. The other theme of the morning was devoted to sustainable tourism, a major challenge for tomorrow’s tourism. Stéphane Vincent, the creator of the We Go GreenR platform (a start-up that supports transitions to sustainable tourism), cites sobering statistics: “today, 3 out of 4 travelers are looking for eco-responsible stays. But only 1 establishment out of 10 is able to offer it!”.

Sustainable tourism: what are we talking about?

Stéphane Vincent explains: “this is tourism integrating the environmental component, of course (minimizing the impact on the environment by favoring public transport in particular); integrating the economic component (agritourism, promoting the local economy); and finally integrating the social component (making it accessible to the less fortunate, to people with disabilities, etc.).

Maryse Garcia-Alvarez, the director of CDT47 declares: “New Aquitaine has the ambition to become the 1st eco-tourism destination in France”. To conclude this forum, we will retain the formula of Jean-Pierre Caillau, manager of the Lafitte farm in Montgaillard: “Here we don’t have the Eiffel Tower, but people like to come and relax”. Before the meal, three visits of your choice were planned: the river port of Buzet, the Cave des Vignerons and of course the castle and its park. The afternoon was dedicated to the leaflet exchange which was held in the sports hall. About a hundred participants were able to exchange their leaflets in order to make themselves known and thus create their network.

Some hot reactions

Stéphanie Fouché of the UNICOQUE coop in Cancon: “It is important for tourism stakeholders to be able to meet. As for ecotourism, it is an inevitable path today.” Delphine, Myriam and Stéphanie from the Val de Garonne Tourist Office: “We enjoyed meeting up and talking to professionals, as well as meeting partners we only knew by phone”. Axel and Muriel, from the Mézin cork and cork museum: “A pleasant, convivial day. Our museum is developing a room devoted to sustainable development. We have a project to replant cork oak. We were surprised by this gap between such strong demand and such weak offer of ecotourism”. Gaëtan de Laever, manager of lodges in Trentels: “I regret that borders have been created between the various tourist offices and between the departments. Tourists (especially foreigners) ignore these borders. We would need a tool allowing us to sell an entire region, without remaining compartmentalised within hermetic perimeters”. Josiane Carrère, gite manager in St-Pierre-de-Buzet: “A rich and organized day in the center of the department. It is true that the digital that we have been promised for several years is lagging behind. I hope that We Go GreenR will be useful for me to establish my diagnoses”.

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