Leslie Graham, Unravel TravelTV
The Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) and Thailand Incentive and Convention Association (TICA) have collaborated to help develop M&I products and promote diverse local identities in Thailand’s diverse regions.
Recent findings from the Incentive Research Foundation indicate that incentive attendees are motivated more by authentic–rather than luxury–experiences.
As part of the Thailand Go Strategy, the Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) collaborates with local communities and networks to support regions of Thailand in developing memorable local experiences for M&I groups. This initiative includes the creation of MICE routes in each province and the development of the Product MICE premium program that transforms local products and services into souvenirs, snacks, or gifts that support the local economy.
A key element is education, both for event planners and local suppliers. The TCEB M&I department recently supported the Thailand Incentive and Convention Association (TICA) in organizing the TICA Destination Update–a fam trip to Chiang Rai for Thai DMCs–to help them develop programs offering new destinations and products for international M&I groups.
Chiang Rai is the northernmost province of the Kingdom of Thailand. It is known for its local arts and traditional crafts, offering the best tea & coffee and the lush scenery of the surrounding mountains.
Sumate Sudasna, president of Thailand Incentive and Convention Association (TICA) and TCEB appointed M&I Market Champion for Europe, said, “Chiang Rai, being a less visited destination with authentic attractions, bodes well with planners looking to offer rustic experiences for memorable incentive travel programs. TICA DMCs who participated in the trip were excited to learn about recent developments that maintain indigenous characters and identities that will add special touches to the motivational travel programs.”
The program included community-based tourism activities led by local villagers and visits to the city’s five-star properties, tea and coffee plantations, and local restaurants.
The attendees met with the local headman at Muang Ruong village to hear the traditional stories of the village before visiting Akha Coffee Co. Ltd, a local coffee plantation on the land of the Akha Hill tribe that uses only traditional farming methods with a high value on preserving nature.
They joined workshops learning to make local crafts, including learning about local textiles, herbal soap, and paper mache. They also enjoyed northern Thai cuisine at various restaurants and cafes with capacity for mid to large M&I groups.
To further support event planners and connect them with authentic local experiences, TCEB continually works with local communities to further develop MICE capabilities within the 7 MICE themes: fascinating history and culture, exhilarating adventures, treasured team building, CSR and green meetings, beach bliss, lavish luxury, and culinary journeys.
The Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau website: www.businesseventsthailand.com
Thailand reports on the Unravel Travel TV website: unraveltraveltv.com/thailand