KTO means business with event subsidies

EVENTS headed to South Korea from now until 2015 can qualify for goodies handed out by the Korea Tourism Organization (KTO) as part of its 2012 Korea Convention Year campaign.

Conventions that meet UIA meeting criteria, and meetings and incentives with more than 100 overseas participants will enjoy up to 10 per cent off meeting venues, up to 40 per cent off hotel room rates, as well as complimentary upgrades, welcome amenities, site inspections and traditional entertainment. Events with more than 500 Asian participants or more than 1,000 international participants may obtain further airline discounts.

In an interview with TTG Asia e-Daily, KTO assistant director, MICE strategic planning team, Lee Hyeonjin, said the 2012 Korea Convention Year was the highlight of the destination’s 2010-2012 Visit Korea Year campaign (TTG Asia e-Daily, November 14, 2011).

“South Korea’s convention business has been growing rapidly, but the industry’s focus has so far been on infrastructure development. We want to now focus on using software and content to promote South Korea as a MICE destination.”

Apart from increased subsidies and support, the bureau will also host overseas roadshows to raise awareness of the destination, invest in advertising campaigns and host fam trips, in May and July for the US/Europe markets and Asia-Pacific market, respectively.

The bureau will also organise roadshows to Geneva and France, where most association headquarters are based.

“South Korea has been too dependent on incentives, so it is time to grow our association meetings,” said Lee.

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