The international business tourism show held in Barcelona confirmed that there are very good reasons for starting next year on an optimistic note. For one thing, the interviews held can be appraised as highly positive, both in terms of number and results. Furthermore, the experts disclosed very positive expectations for growth in the sector in general as well as for destinations with an offer similar to ours.
The sixty-plus interviews held with agents from Germany, Great Britain, Poland, Russia, France, Belgium, Nordic countries, USA, in addition to the national market, gave us the opportunity to make new contacts and to renew contact with agents that we had worked with previously.
Although most of these meetings had been arranged beforehand, we also had spontaneous requests with positive results for both parties. Once again, we clearly saw the agencies’ wish to find alternative destinations and to become thoroughly familiar with our destination.
In many cases, the agencies interviewed had already come with the intention of getting to know the destination in detail.
Confidence and growth
During the show, as usual, the annual report on trends in the business tourism sector was presented. Rob Davidson, managing director at Mice Knowledge, and Alistair Turner, managing director of Eight PR & Marketing, reviewed the different market performances. According to these two experts, despite the uncertainty in geopolitical and economic spheres, 2018 will be a year of growth for the MICE industry.
Both speakers pointed out that rapid technological development and changes in organizations will condition the need for more specialised and more frequent events. According to the report, increasing importance will be given to destinations that have their own particular trademark and can offer genuine experiences connected with the region.
Faithful to the annual event
The event reached its 30th edition with the participation of 3,000 exhibitors from over 150 countries and the attendance of almost 15,000 MICE professionals, including 4,200 buyers.
Once again, the Costa Brava Girona Convention Bureau was present at the MICE event of the year, participating from the Catalonia stand together with a significant representation of companies and organizations from the province, such as the Girona City Convention Bureau, the Lloret Convention Bureau, Evenia Hotels, Peralada Resort, Ilunion and Hotel Camiral.