MICE, business and luxury travel from the ME set to increase in 2019

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DUBAI — Emphasizing on the ever growing Middle East’s business travel market, the 7th Annual MICE Arabia and Luxury Travel (MALT) Congress, the region’s premier by invitation-only business platform focussed on new disruptions in the MICE and Luxury Travel industry at the luxurious Rixos Premium Dubai JBR. UAE was highlighted as the second biggest market for outbound travel from the Middle East, surpassed by Saudi Arabia with business and luxury outbound travelers being a combination of locals and expats. The growing number of destinations served by the UAE›s airlines is one of the factors that attributes to the growth of outbound travel from the UAE

With Middle Eastern countries investing heavily in infrastructure, cruise lines are adding to the attraction of luxury travel. Mohammed Saeed, general manager for Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises and Azamara Club Cruises in the Middle East, said, “Middle Eastern travelers see cruises as an easy way to check off several bucket list attractions they may not previously have visited with the introduction of leisure cruise industry from the GCC region. We are always on the lookout to offer the next best and effortless experience. Participating in the MALT Congress gives us an excellent opportunity to immerse ourselves to discuss trends.”

Discussing the need for Incentivisation and focusing on the growing interests for Russian countries, tourist itineraries now have travelers explore more destinations and have increased exposure on Sochi, Kazan, Karelia, the Trans-Siberian Railway and others, among the well-known destinations of Moscow and St. Petersburg.

“This is only possible due to the incentivization programs and great infrastructure built during the preparation of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia,” said Victoria Globina, senior project manager, Russian Empire, DMC. “Face-to-face meetings are one of the most effective tools to find reliable suppliers and customers, so for us, participating in the MALT Congress is very important.

Travelers are showing a keen interest in upcoming destinations like Zanzibar and Tanzania. These exotic destinations do have the infrastructure for MICE travel and are looking for innovative ways to attract travelers. Hailing their participation at the Congress, Sabine Emmerich, general manager, ZanTours, said, “MICE shows like MICE Arabia and Luxury Travel Congress, gives us the platform to target very specific incentive agents, corporates in the GCC market to promote our destination as the perfect and more important still fairly new destination for incentives, events, and conferences.”

The MALT Congress this year focused on driving business success, benefiting from all year-round opportunities to making connections, exploring trends and technologies from around the world and deep diving into every aspect of travel. A Panel of Women Panelists led a discussion on the best practices and checklists, unveiling the next gen of events.

The congress also emphasized on the use of future travel & technology trends while exploring the role of augmented reality in the world of MICE. The growing sustenance of Social Media, Digitisation, personalization and budgeting was discussed during the “Ideathon sessions” at the event.

Sidh NC, director, QNA International said, “As the Middle East continues to see a surge in outbound travel, there is more emphasis to recognize the importance of MICE and making MICE friendly destination offerings and unique experiences available. As Middle East buyers are continually on the lookout for new destinations and novel experiences the 7th Annual MICE Arabia & Luxury Travel Congress was all about exploring new destinations as well as addressing local, regional and global trends and challenges in the MICE and luxury travel sector.” — SG


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