French tourism development agency Atout France has joined The Association of Independent Tour Operators (Aito) as an affiliate member.

Aito now has 70 affiliate business partners. It works with partners to promote destinations and bolster tourism through marketing campaigns and close ties with the travel trade.

Atout France promotes the development of France’s tourism industry. Its main aim is to maintain a system for monitoring and analysing supply and demand in the tourism market.

Camille Larose, trade and promotion senior executive, said: “Atout France is delighted to become a new Aito Affilate. This is a great opportunity for our trade and PR departments to keep in touch with the travel trade industry.

“The travel trade relationshiops which Aito provides are incredibly beneficial for us in terms of promoting France as a travel destination.”

Aito executive director Kate Kenward said: “It’s good to see that France isn’t resting on its tourism laurels but is continuing to broaden its appeal to a wide-ranging visitor demographic. By joining Aito, Atout France can tap into our market of specialist interest travellers who like to travel to lesser-known regions, away from the usual main attractions and bucket-list spots.”

Events in France this year include 500 Years of Renaissance, a year-long programme marking the fifth centenary of Leonardo da Vinci’s death; parades, firework displays and air shows to mark the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings in Normandy and the 2019 Women’s World Cup.