MICE Tourism in India is quite new as the concept has emerged only after liberalization of economy after 1991. Tourism Industry plays a vital role in supporting economy of the country as well as generates foreign currency. MICE have emerged as a new phenomenon to aid to the thriving Tourism Industry of emerging Tourism Destinations. India is one such. Today, hotels and major tourist resorts are becoming a center for attraction of meetings, gatherings, planning, conferences and other activities that involves a large number of people. This all the event management, with any purpose, is included in such activities and summarily a new concept MICE is derived of it.
What is MICE Tourism? :
MICE, in tourism industry stand for 4 words :
- Meetings- an occasion when people come together with a purpose
- Incentives-Encouragement by companies by rewarding employees
- Conferences-a large official meeting usually lasting for days
- Exhibitions-collective showcasing of works to public These four are the pillars of this whole emerging concept.
MICE tourism includes the whole management, planning, booking and other facilities that are required to facilitate Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions at any destination. MICE Tourism works in various fields like planning and managing corporate meetings, as convention department of hotels, conference centers or cruise ships, organizing international seminars and conferences of government and corporates, food and beverage management, private tour operations; incentive meetings; for professional trade organizations; tourism boards, tourism trade associations and much more. A number of global events focus on MICE travel, in particular the Incentive niche.
Services that are offered and managed in MICE have a wide range yet to list some of them:
- Corporate Training
- Theme Management
- Costume Management
- Technical Support
- Food and Beverage Management etc.
MICE Tourism in India at Present :
MICE Tourism in India, have great potential that could be harnessed with strategic coordination, framing proper MICE policies, government efforts and infrastructural development. Influx of MICE Tourism is much lower than outflowing development of MICE to other developed nations as they provide better safeguards and better infrastructural facilities.
Since, India is a major tourist destination in world, government and corporate efforts to develop MICE Tourism could yield better fruits.
With the BJP coming into the power, much of the international relation with other world has improved and giving a hand to MICE too for development. With more investments of leading tourism agencies and coordination of Indian companies with world is expanding MICE which is growing at a rate of nearly 20% per year.
Showing the MICE Destinations of India :
||Vigyan Bhawan, Habitat World, The Ashok, Taj Palace, Park Royal, Hyatt Regency, Inter Continental, ITC Maurya Sherton, Le-Meridien, Uppals Orchid, India Expo Centre, The Taj Mahal, The Oberoi,
||Vigyan Bhawan, Habitat World, The Ashok, Taj Palace, Park Royal, Hyatt Regency, Inter Continental, ITC Maurya Sherton, Le-Meridien, Uppals Orchid, India Expo Centre, The Taj Mahal, The Oberoi, Hotel Samrat, The Park Hotel, Jaypee Siddharth, Radisson, The Centaur Hotel, ITC Welcome Hotel, The Claridges, Taj Residency, Grand Ashok, The Leela Palace, Palms, The Taj West End, Hilton, Royal Orchid
||Oriental Bliss Tours, Hindustan International, Ramada Plaza, JHV and many more.
||Majorda Beach Resort, Goa Marriot Resort, The Leela Palace, Taj Exotica, The Grand, Cita de Goa
||Hyderabad International Convention Centre, Hyderabad Marriot Hotel, Taj Krishna, ITC Hotel, Kakatiya Sheraton & Towers, Taj Residency, Taj Banjara, Green Park, Minerva Grand, Ramoji Film City
||Vivanat Taj, Sarovar Portico
||Le-Meridien, ITC/Park Sheraton/Towers, Connemara Hotel, Taj Coromandel, Chola Sherton
||Mughal Sherton, Jaypee Palace, Taj View, Holiday Inn, Clarks Shriaz, Hoard Park Plaza, Grand Hotel
||B. M. Birla Science Centre, ITC Rajputana, Hotel Clarks Amer, Mansigh Towers
||Sher-I-Kashmir International Conference Centre
||The Taj Mahal Hotel, Hilton Towers, The Leela, Taj Lands End, Renaissance, ITC Hotel Grand Marath Sherton and Towers, Grand Hyatt, J.W. Marriot Hotel, Taj President, Le Royal Meridien, Hotel Rang Sharda
||Science City, The Oberoi Grand, Taj Bengal, Hyatt Regency, ITC Hotel- Sonar Bangla Sheraton & Towers, Taj Bengal, Hotel Airport, The Park
||Le-Meridien - Hotel & Convention Centre, The Renaissance, Abad Plazza, The Avenue Regent, Casino, Abad
MICE Tourism as an opportunity for Indian Tourism :
- Better connectivity with world because of its physiographic location provides India to become a MICE hub.
- India has signed several treaties with the developed countries to cooperate and develop its tourism sector that is boon to MICE Tourism.
- Expansion of leading hotel chains in India has created a new space for development of MICE in India.
- Development of transport and communication for better connectivity is pet project of present government which would further provide a fillip to MICE Tourism Industry.
- Rapid development of software and services industry gives MICE a new space to develop online from remotest corners of India.
- India is one of the fastest growing economies of the world and is able to attract huge investments that are assistance in creating new services in MICE Tourism.
- Good human resource as youthful population is a major player in development of MICE as tireless young innovative minds are engaged in MICE.
- Cheap labor is another factor that makes development of MICE in India a beneficial possibility.
Challenges for MICE Tourism in India :
- Competition with developed and neighboring countries like China, Thailand and Singapore
- Lack of world-class infrastructure
- Emerging MICE destinations of Europe and America
- Recent terrorist activities in the major cities of India
- Negative perception about safety and protection of tourists
- Religious intolerance in some cases
- Providing communication connectivity in remote and rugged terrains that are major tourist hubs
- Man-power planning
- A National Policy on MICE Tourism
- Lack of marketing at MICE destinations
- A gap in Indian Hospitality Management
- Up gradation of transport highways, services, railways, and air-ports
- Lack of trained man-power to manage big events
Optimising Resources for Development of MICE in India :
Technology and social media are effective tools in the MICE segment. Use of technology to enhance the conference experience has been adopted at NHCC. Aim of government as well as corporates has been to deliver more inspiring, more engaging, and more result driven meeting experiences to meet the customers’ demand. Meeting experiences are being transformed with engaging technology, flexible work-spaces to inspire collaboration, and with creative solutions. Standardisation of services across event managers, professional conference organisers, exhibition organisers is crucial to the development of the MICE sector, and in order to achieve this, setting up of training and certification courses is essential. Colleges and institutions should be encouraged to include curriculum of MICE in courses. Resorts and hotels coming to as MICE Destination should be given incentives or tax subsidies. Regulations to encourage domestic MICE tourism should be focussed.