Hannover, Germany. After the two trade shows had to be suspended for two years in a row due to the pandemic, the organizers were all the more delighted with the successful relaunch. Dr. Jochen Köckler, Chairman of the Board of Management of Deutsche Messe AG: "The high number of visitors shows that the abf, just like the B.I.G., was missed by the people in the region. And it is a very clear signal that B2C trade fairs will continue to be successful in the future. A visit to a trade fair is and remains an overall experience that online retail cannot offer, and thus always provides exhibitors with unique opportunities for customer contact and sales."

Klaudia Kohl, head of the B2C trade fairs department added: "Exhibitors and visitors really enjoyed the abf and B.I.G. - they gave us a super start to the trade fair year 2023."

According to the independent market research institute Gelszus, visitors' buying behavior reached almost the same level as at the previous event. This year, for example, 48 percent of visitors bought or ordered something (2020: 51 percent), spending an average of 1041 euros compared to 1096 euros in 2020. This contributed significantly to exhibitor satisfaction.

B.I.G. exhibitor David Theil, "Oakbrother": "We liked the B.I.G. mega well. We had many regular as well as new customers at our booth. The fair is an absolute enrichment and offers us the perfect opportunity to present ourselves."

Verena Müller, Harz Tourism Association: "We were at the special presentation 'Harz ERLEBEN' in the travel hall and were super accepted by the visitors. The audience was absolutely interested and we had many and very good conversations."

Alexander Karmann, Areamanager at caravan manufacturer Knaus Tabbert: "We are absolutely satisfied and will definitely be back next year."

For the first time on the abf thereby were the camper Ausbauer Salty Blue from Bargdeheide. Alexander Lehning, fair representative: "We have written very good sales figures. That it goes so well, we did not expect. Our participation at the fair was definitely worthwhile and our expectations were exceeded. We will definitely be back next time."

And Christian Hackerott, Managing Director at Autohaus Hackerott: "The abf offers us as a mobility group the perfect opportunity to present our entire range. We were absolutely surprised at the number of visitors and are very satisfied."

Among the highlights this year was the new "Vanlife" area, which showcased the many options for camper conversions. There was a daily stage program, plus workshops for do-it-yourself van conversion.

The large-scale special presentation "EXPERIENCE the Harz Mountains" was also an absolute crowd-puller. Visitors were able to ride a mountain bike course, sample Harz specialties, find out about the most beautiful destinations in the low mountain range, and view an impressive photo exhibition and a model of the Selketalbahn.

The two Aktiv & Fit specials Hula Hoop Day on Friday and the Bellicon Jumping Event on Saturday provided a real party atmosphere. Numerous participants had registered for both events in advance.

Despite, or rather because of the gloomy weather, the garden area of the B.I.G. was the highlight for many visitors. Four beautifully designed theme gardens provided inspiration and whetted the appetite for spring.

Other points of contact at the B.I.G. were the numerous opportunities to find out about sustainable living and energy saving, including from the Hannover Region Climate Protection Agency or the Bundesverband Altbauerneuerung (BAKA). The BAKA was also the organizer of the 1st University Day at the B.I.G., where students and teachers from all over Germany discussed the future of architecture and civil engineering courses. The associated student competition was won by a group of students from the Technical University of Munich.

Visitors to the trade fairs were also overwhelmingly satisfied. 82 percent of them said they would come again next year, 87 percent said they would recommend the fairs to others. Via Facebook, RitaundThomasAufReisen wrote: "The trade fair was really fun, even though it was very crowded today. We got very good advice from several exhibitors, gained new knowledge for our motorhome, got to know new products and that although we have been motorhome owners and campers for 32 years and visit a lot of fairs."

And Christian Ludwigh: "Finally again ABF - Fair for active leisure, we had a very nice day with you. We are already looking forward to next year. It was a nice new start after the years of forced break."

The success of the two trade shows - no reason for the organizers to rest on their laurels. Project manager Florian Eiben: "For us, the successful re-launch is proof that we have focused on the right topics. We will start directly afterwards to further expand both fairs, to increase the brand diversity and to additionally place new topics."

The next trade fair duo, abf and B.I.G., will take place from January 31 to February 4, 2024.