16 November 2016, Bangkok: Thailand was announced as official host country for the SITE Global Conference 2019 after the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (Public Organization) or TCEB won the bid to host the world-class annual conference that features diverse representation from global incentive travel professionals. The event helps to emphasis Thailand’s regional leadership position in terms of readiness and capabilities as a high quality MICE destination to global incentive travel players.
Mr Nopparat Maythaveekulchai, president of TCEB revealed that the bureau recently won the bid for Thailand to host the “SITE Global Conference 2019” – an annual association meeting of the Society for Incentive Travel Excellence (SITE), the only global organization dedicated to strengthening and supporting the incentive travel industry. Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, SITE global communities comprise 2,000 incentive travel professionals, operators, and entrepreneurs in 90 countries across the globe – from the US, to Europe, and Asia – including meeting planners, organisers, cruises, tourism boards, convention and visitor bureaus, and incentive houses.
“In line with an American Express Report, which indicates that the US economy is showing positive signs of recovery, the meetings and incentive travels sector has also picked up and is expected to grow over the next three years. Recognizing the importance of this key market with high spending power to the incentive travel segment, Thailand will benefit from hosting this major event in many ways. Firstly, Thailand will be able to leverage awareness of its MICE industry readiness and capabilities, as well as new and innovative MICE products and services that complement its regional leadership position as a high quality MICE destination. Secondly, we will be able to enhance our communication channels toward direct target groups through the SITE database, connecting with more than 500 members in the US, and over 1,000 around the world. Thirdly, as a host country, Thailand will receive extensive business opportunities through an optimized marketing network, business negotiations and sales opportunities, due to one third of participants in the SITE Global Conference are high potential target customers. Moreover, this annual meeting for the incentive travel sector will provide a new platform for knowledge exchange and create direct revenue, stemming from travel expenditure among international delegates.”
Mr Rajeev Kohli, SITE President, said “Incentive Travel sits at the top of the list when it comes to value in the larger travel industry. With a 3 to 4 times higher per passenger value than leisure travel, destinations that have embraced marketing to the incentive travel industry have seen a tremendous return on their investment. I am delighted that Thailand will host SITE's 2019 Global Conference. As our past events have demonstrated, this conference will put a very specific focus on the destination and its ability to offer an engaging product for corporates and organisations across the world. We are excited at the opportunities Bangkok will offer our delegates to explore the Thai culture and the facilities it has for incentive travel programs. With us going to Rome in 2018, Thailand will bring the focus into Asia”
The SITE Global Conference was held for the first time in Reykjavik, Iceland, in 2003. Countries bid to host the event, which is held annually. The upcoming SITE Global Conferences will be held in Panama City, Panama, from 5-7 November 2016, and in Rome, Italy, from 12-15 January 2018. The SITE Global Conference is scheduled to be held for the first time in Thailand in January 2019. It is expected that more than 400 SITE members from around the globe will participate.
The SITE Global Conference 2019 in Thailand will comprise of a board meeting, chapter leader meeting, and annual general meeting of members, keynote sessions, and two-day deep dive workshops as well as networking sessions and MICE venue inspections covering convention centres, hotels, and major tourist attractions.
“The SITE Global Conference 2019 will help drive the readiness of Thai MICE operators, especially among incentive travel businesses, to accommodate the needs of participating MICE travellers joining the event from around the world – from venues to organisers, and shopping destinations to facilities and transportation. TCEB foresees that this major MICE event will help open doors to broader awareness of the Thailand MICE industry, while playing an important role in attracting MICE visitors and generating MICE revenue, contributing to achieving our targets in 2019,” concluded Mr Nopparat.
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