Pacific World – a leading destination and global event management company – is highlighting the MICE trends to watch for in 2018.
The agency says planners are looking beyond technology to seek unique destinations with engaging incentive programmes and events that groups can connect with on a personal level.
Pacific World has been exhibiting new products and speaking about these trends at IMEX America. “In the last year, we have seen a change in the way our clients approach travel,” says Patricia Silvio, global marketing manager at Pacific World.
“An incentive is not a nice trip to reward an employee; it is also an opportunity to interact, learn and experience. We’re seeing a new generation of global citizens that are committed to the idea of an open and interconnected world,” she says.
“Over the past several months, we’ve systematically collected data, insights and feedback from our worldwide network of planners and clients.”
Going Local – “Experiences that tie guests to the destination are growing in popularity,” says Tania Pasi, global product development manager for Pacific World.
“This trend is also popular with locals – they enjoy becoming the hosts and helping to design the activities. A great example is found in the middle of a forest south of Seoul. Guests are invited to cook a meal in an ancient Buddhist Temple and learn about what food sharing means for Asian communities and cultures."
Culture – Immersive, behind-the-scenes experiences with local experts, such as at artist studios in Venice, Italy, or Hoi An, Vietnam.
Positive legacy – Global citizens want to actively participate in the communities they visit – from sustainable experiences to preserving cultural heritage to immersing into villages to collaborate in their sustainable development.
Off-the-beaten track – Travellers want to discover remote places, or experience known destinations in a new way. In Scotland, there are new whiskey routes to be discovered while in China, there is the secluded Shaolin Temple near Luoyang.
• Of requests for Asia, Thailand (18%), China (15%), Indonesia (14%) and Hong Kong (13%) comprise the most.
• Of 1,500 events operated over the past six months by Pacific World, China, Spain and Thailand have hosted the most events. More than 200 events have been held in China; 195 in Spain and 180 in Thailand.
• Demand for European destinations have increased 44 per cent over the last year, with Spain leading the requests. Over the past eight months, requests for Spain alone were 16 per cent of all requests.
• Barcelona and Madrid are the top two destinations in Spain, followed by growing interest in Malaga and Tenerife.
• London, Paris, Rome, Monaco and Germany remain very popular for meetings and events.
• Peru is emerging as a sought-after destination: 7 per cent of requests from around the globe are for Peru.
• Large Events – Monaco and Germany have hosted the largest groups in the past six months.