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Positioning India in the MICE map of the world!

Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) have been globally known to increase the hospitality income. Going by the definition, MICE is a type of tourism which involves large groups gathering for a particular purpose. It also involves a lot of advance planning for a flawless execution. Hotels are one of the most important stakeholders in the MICE industry as they happen to be the main venues for meetings, events, conferences, accommodation, etc. Hotels have the space advantage with amenities which have a high capacity and state-of-the-art equipment. As per the statistics, premium Indian hotel chains have been benefited a lot from hosting conferences and meetings. Moreover, MICE has also helped a lot in showcasing our destinations, in addition to employment creation and infrastructure development.

The Indian MICE market has been growing at a very rapid pace. The logistics of an event help in providing employment to many local players. A combined show by airlines, agents, hotels, local artisans, local traders, the state governments and more, MICE infrastructure is growing tremendously. Globally, the MICE industry all over the world is worth US $480 Billion approximately. While India shares only 2-3 per cent of this, which means there is a huge scope for growth in India. The top MICE destinations offer the finest blend multiple factors. Accommodation, meals, conferences, product launches, meetings, gala dinners, entertainment, etc. are the services associated with MICE business. The state-of-the-art facilities with a gourmet of experiences, MICE planners have multiple hats to wear!

The Indian market is very unique in its expectations and one of the biggest market in the world. All credits go to its fast pace of growing every year. Moreover, the client coming to these events are not just restricted to the usual itineraries, but are ready to explore new areas. The meeting places have changed from being traditional boardroom-style spaces to more innovative outdoor places. They have become like recreational retreats. As the economy picks up, the demand for exhibitions, meetings and events is going to increase leading to exponential growth. Indian companies are spending money to give a unique experience to their stakeholders. Earlier, the business travelers from India used to prefer global destinations for holidays, weddings and MICE. As per researches, food plays an important role in selecting a hotel or a place for incentive travelers. To cater to this, a lot of hospitality chains have started Chef Programs’ wherein chefs from other countries visit India and vice versa to ensure that they consistently offer food as per the guest preference. By understanding various parameters of the guests like their behavior, eating habits, likes, dislikes, etc. customized programs are designed and implemented.

If we look around, India has everything- the sea, desert, mountains, islands along with a vibrant and diverse culture, but somewhere we are still lacking in making full use of these strengths. India’s efforts in attracting big conventions to its shores need to be re-imagined and moved forward from the current traditional models. A lot of pre-and post-leisure activities can be included to increase the value of MICE tourism. The government also offers a lot of revenue generating schemes that can help to fund the bidding process for large conventions. The private stakeholders have to realize that such schemes can be availed! The Asian MICE market has seen a growth rate of 38 per cent rise since 2006. Delhi, Hyderabad, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai, Kolkata, Gujarat, Goa, Chandigarh, Jaipur and Cochin have been the top MICE destinations. New hotel ventures come up every day, which is a positive sign for the MICE industry. A lot of budget segment hotels have also entered the league opening up avenues for the attendees who were constrained due to star hotel prices.

Thus the Indian MICE market is growing rapidly with a strong domestic sector, and a booming outbound traffic. We are hopeful in that the MICE organizers also tap the untapped markets in Tier-2 and 3 cities. We hope that this year turns even better for Indian MICE!

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