Demand for ‘experiences’ outpaces tourism in Asia Pacific’s CIT industry
The two organisations partnered to commission a research project to help Asia Pacific region meeting planners understand what is driving this expanding CIT market, which favours travel over financial incentives to motivate and reward high-performing staff, particularly Gen Y and Millennials.
APAC’s business events sector is already valued at more than US$200 billion, so researchers identified ways meeting planners could maximise CIT and develop new revenue models.
Traveling to another county is no longer the dominating factor in designing CIT, according to the study. Nearly one-third of CIT planners said curating unexpected ‘wow’ experiences, including hands-on events tailored to professional and personal growth, have become the industry standard.
Other CIT trends include a shift from first-tier destinations to a growing appetite for unusual, less-known incentive travel locations; an increasing need for additional research and support in creating unique delegate itineraries; the opportunity for further collaboration between planners, destination bureaus and associated services to meet the needs of the market; the increasing demand of justifying budgets and providing more for less or the same budgets; and the impact of social media on the expectations of travelers and corporate clients.
Speaking at PCMA’s 2018 Annual Conference in Bangkok, Melbourne Convention Bureau CEO Karen Bolinger said the CIT segment is proving to be a “quiet phenomenon”, with the segment in Australia alone growing at 20 percent year on year.
“It was obvious that this rapidly growing market would generate incredible insight and new business opportunities for incentive and meeting planners in Asia Pacific,” she said.
PCMA president Sherrif Karamat said it was important event strategists “take action and become the disruptors, rather than being disrupted”.
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