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Aug 23, 2022 / 15:15

Hanoi's tourism industry boosts MICE development

The development of MICE (Meetings, incentives, conferences, exhibitions) tourism will spur the recovery of the travel industry.

Hanoi's tourism industry should remove bottlenecks related to infrastructure and human resources for the development of MICE, according to local experts.

 Foreign visitors attend Routes Asia 2022 in June. Photo: VNA

As Covid-19 has been contained, MICE tourism would regain momentum if proper policies are adopted, according to the Hanoi Center for Investment - Promotion - Trade - Tourism (HPA).

Hanoi's offerings for MICE travelers include the night tour "Deciphering thang Long's Imperial Citadel", a tour exploring the Hoa Lo Prison Relic at night and a number of events such as the Tourism Festival - Culture and Culinary, the Tourism Gift Festival and the Hanoi Tourism Festival 2022 with the theme "Hanoi - Come to Love".

According to the deputy director of the HPA Bui Duy Quang, MICE tourists are those willing to use high-class services and facilities and stay for a long time. MICE tourists come in large groups, MICE revenues are 4-6 times higher than other types of tourism.

“MICE not only helps Hanoi and Vietnam promote the domestic tourism industry but also an opportunity for customers and businesses to seek partners and develop potential markets through MICE tours,” he said.

Challenges for MICE tourism development 

South Korean tourists join a MICE tour fair in Hanoi. Photo: kinhtedothi.vn

Although there is a lot of room to grow, according to experts, Hanoi is facing some challenges in developing this product.

AZA Travel Company Director Nguyen Tien Dat pointed out that although there are many five-star hotels in Hanoi, their conference room capacity has not been able to accommodate large-scale events of up to several thousand people. In addition, human resources for MICE tourism are limited in both quantity and quality, while the promotion of MICE tourism in the international market by the city remains weak.

“Consequently, MICE products are not attractive and have not generated big revenues for businesses as well as for Hanoi itself,” he said.

With 25 years of experience in MICE tourism, Director of Travelogy Vietnam Travel Company Vu ​​Van Tuyen shared that there are many difficulties for the city’s travel businesses to build MICE-related products due to the shortage of human resources and the link between service providers.

“This is the reason why stays of international and domestic tourists to Hanoi are relatively short. Hanoi is just a transit point for tourists to visit other localities,” he underlined.

As the Covid-19 pandemic has been contained, trends including the combination of working in the office and working from home, workcation (work and vacation), and versatile travel are favoring the development of MICE tourism.

“With these three trends, the HPA should boost the improvement of existing MICE tourism products as well as support travel businesses to cooperate with destinations and craft villages in the creation of MICE products,” Tuyen said.

Dat from AZA Travel also proposed that the center will be the coordinator to form a network of all companies that can provide MICE services, focusing on supporting travel businesses to develop MICE tourism products.

Dean of the Faculty of Culture Tourism of the Hanoi University of Culture Dr. Duong Van Sau said that in order to effectively develop MICE tourism, the city needs to continue to improve accommodation infrastructure according to international standards, regularly evaluate and rank accommodation facilities, promote accommodation potential and related services.

In addition, the city should strengthen the development of entertainment services to extend the length of stay, improve the experience of tourists, and provide services and products aimed at diverse segments.

Director of the Institute for Tourism Development Research Nguyen Anh Tuan said that localities need to focus on investing in infrastructure with many types of quality services, increasing the number of lodging rooms.

The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) forecasts that, by 2025, revenues from the MICE tourism industry worldwide will reach more than US$1.4 trillion, with the largest shares coming from Europe and Asia-Pacific.