The theory is simple, to expose your business to international expertise, you can either fly a few choicest employees and clients overseas to meet briefly with experts, investors and foreign specialists at high cost, or you can host a symposium or convention where you invite the world’s leading thinkers and international players to present their latest ideas and get the opportunity to rub off of their expertise, in your own backyard – at their own expense.
Meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions, or Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Events (MICE)
, is a type of tourism in which large groups, generally a healthy mixture of corporates, clients, thinkers, leaders, and innovators come together, usually planned well in advance, for a particular purpose. Recently, there has been an industry trend towards using the term 'meetings industry'. (Source: Wikipedia)
Incentive tourism is usually undertaken as a type of employee reward by a company or institution for targets met or exceeded, or a job well done. In simple words, the “I” from MICE comes into play when you want to reward your star employees or loyal customers and providers.
Conference tourism as the name suggests is when a group of thinkers, innovators and entrepreneurs come together for the unified goal of exchanging thoughts and ideas.
Events and exhibitions are held to give the attendees a specialized overview of the organizers’ ideas and products. This can be deemed as a wholesome experience since it usually combines food and entertainment too.
1) MICE is an avenue of the fastest growing economic sector in the world
Business and travel for shopping are major sources of tourism. With economic development and increasing globalization, the meetings, incentives, conventions, and exhibitions (MICE) market has emerged as a fast-growing sector in many local economies (Dwyer & Forsyth, 1997; Yang, Cai, Ottens, & Sliuzas, 2013).
2) MICE opens the door for international trade
India offers an educated manpower base where fluency in English and other official international languages can be expected. This eliminates the language barrier and avails a larger, global playground for operators. Additionally, India is easy to access from airports worldwide.
It is not rocket science but a simple observation that International attendees in a convention and exhibition have higher purchasing capacity as compared to FIT (Free Independent Travellers) tourists.
3) MICE has a multiplier effect
An average MICE attendee will spend 6 times as compared to a typical tourist. If an average tourist or tourist group spends an x amount, an attendee will spend about 6x the amount. This is a huge contribution that benefits the economy.
4) MICE is a platform for transfer of knowledge and technology
The country that can secure an international convention or exhibition is indeed fortunate. It will not only benefit in terms of economic value but also the knowledge and technology. For the knowledge transfer that International speakers and participants bring, is immense.
5) MICE benefits multiple sectors and industries
A conference or exhibition that is International in nature involves all modes of transport, travel, and tour operators, production houses, exhibition venues, food and catering, entertainment, designers and craftsmen etc., the list goes on.
This is how MICE creates a snowball effect to the economy and industry related to it.
6) MICE gives an impetus to other segments of the tourism industry too
Be it cultural tourism, city tourism, sports tourism, wine- and gastronomy tourism, all segments of tourism are provided with opportunities. Leisure programs before, during and after the event support the relaxation, leisure, and entertainment of the participants, as well as the organizers, help in doing so.
7) MICE enables you to march forward while going green
More and more people are becoming conscious of their impact on the environment. With the green movement on the rise, many clients are now looking for more eco-conscious corporate events. Vendors are now environmentally-conscious and include greener, more environmentally friendly options in their proposals, in a bid to attract their clients and associates. Recycling bins, biodegradable cutlery, and packaging that use ingredients that are organic and results of fair trade are being used. This, in turn, promotes the green movement all around the world.
8) India is infested with MICE
India offers a perfect picturesque backdrop along with excellent business facilities dipped in luxury for all the requirements of the meetings, conferences and conventions and executive events that an organizer or a foreign delegate might be concerned about. So also, India is well connected with domestic as well as international airports, roadways, and railways too. Goa is one of the most preferred destination when it comes to MICE tourism, closely followed by Hyderabad, Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, and Agra. To supplement all of this, there is a plethora of excellent tour operators and organizers that can make the perfect meetings, incentives, conferences, events, and exhibitions happen for you.
It is never too late to go out on a limb and get trained to dive into the world of MICE tourism with specialized training institutes sprinkled abundantly all over India.
Now you know!