Conference tourism, also known as MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions) tourism, is an emerging area in tourism that is finding resonance with policy-makers across the world. Early today, while speaking at the inaugural of the India Energy Week 2024, the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, underlined the opportunities in conference tourism and earlier this week, the Minister of Finance, Nirmala Sitharaman, emphasised on the development of conference tourism in India.
“Goa is perfectly poised to become a sought-after destination for conferences and workshops because of its infrastructure, venue quality, accommodation options with various 5 star properties engaged in MICE Tourism promotion, accessibility, safety and security, the availability of professional service, and cultural and recreational attractions that include museums, historical sites, natural attractions, shopping districts, dining options, and entertainment venues that showcase the region’s unique identity and appeal to conference attendees,” said Rohan A. Khaunte, Minister of Tourism.
Travel for the purpose of attending conferences, conventions, trade shows, exhibitions, or meetings related to a specific industry or profession involves individuals or groups traveling to a destination to participate in or organize events that facilitate networking, knowledge exchange, professional development, and business transactions.
Conference tourism can have significant economic impacts on destinations, as it brings in business travellers who typically spend money on accommodations, dining, transportation, entertainment, and other services. Cities and regions often compete to host conferences and conventions, as they can generate substantial revenue and stimulate local economies.
Some of the key components of conference tourism are meetings, incentive travel, conventions and trade shows, exhibitions, and workshops.
“Conference tourism has experienced significant growth in recent decades due to several key factors such as globalization, advancements in technology that facilitates digital communication tools, such as video conferencing, webinars, and virtual event platforms, the growth and spread of the knowledge economy, industry specialization, the recognition of the fact that many destinations benefit economically and also socially and politically from these activities, and networking and aggregating opportunities locally as well as globally,” said Suneel Anchipaka, Director, Tourism and Managing Director, Goa Tourism Development Corporation.