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South Korea Attracts Quality Tourists from ASEAN

By November 8, 2016 at 9:01 am
Group of people cosplaying in front of a temple (Photo : by Jean Chung/Getty Images)

South Korea is doubling its efforts to transform the nation into a business event hub by drawing in more quality visitors, such as event delegates and business travelers, from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) region. This is all part of the Korea Tourism Organization (KTO)'s drive to generate 'quality tourism growth' by reinforcing its position as a destination for Meetings, Incentive Travels, Conventions and Exhibitions (MICE) in Asia.

Last Friday, the KTO hosted the Korea MICE and Culture Festival in Singapore to attract huge numbers of 'quality visitors' from ASEAN, one of the fastest growing markets.

The state-run organization invited more than 200 event organizers, corporate clients and travel agents, and hosted a business-to-business (B2B) consultation session to provide various details on the benefits of business events in South Korea.

During the event in Singapore, the KTO focused on the promotion of South Korea as a MICE destination by highlighting the nation's high-quality business features and culture, including its food, music and drama.

"Korea is an attractive country where visitors can experience unique trends, such as hallyu or the Korean Wave," said Yoon Seung-hwan, director of KTO Singapore Office. "Not only Seoul but also other cities are well-equipped with state-of-the art facilities for MICE events along with their unique culture, food and charm."

In 2015, Korea hosted a total of 891 international events-the second largest number in the world-according to the Union of International Association.

"Korea is already a popular destination for MICE," stated Alan Lim, Vice-President of Singapore Airlines. "What is attractive about Korea as a MICE destination is its variety. You have culture, shopping and food."

The KTO said that its Singapore office had brought in 10,603 MICE tourists for the first nine months of 2016. During the same period, the organization's Bangkok and Hanoi offices attracted 23,269 and 25,878 MICE tourists, respectively.

MICE tourists spend twice as much as ordinary tourists, which means that MICE events provide better returns in terms of economic contribution.

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