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travel trends, travel 2018, australian tourism

Top 10 cities for meetings, conferences and exhibitions

Posted on April 30th, 2018 in Blog, News

Worldwide, the number of corporate and industry meetings is on the rise. The latest figures from the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) captured 12,212 international meetings taking place last year – over 100 more than the previous year and more than double compared to a decade earlier.

So which cities and countries are the best performers when it comes to international events, and where does Australia fit in?

 

  1. Paris

With 196 events, Paris reclaimed the top spot in ICCA’s ranking from 2014. The city hosted one more meeting than 2015’s number one, Berlin, helping France climb to fourth in the country rankings above Spain.

 

  1. Vienna

Rapidly climbing from fourth to second place with 186 events in 2016, the Austrian capital boasted the highest number of meeting participants of any country with 119,887 attendees.

 

  1. Barcelona

The Catalonian city held on to third place for another year with 181 events drawing almost 100,000 participants.

 

  1. Berlin

It may have slipped down from number one last year, but Berlin is still one of the strongest cities for conferences with 176 events. Germany has more meetings than any other European country (689 total), which could mean that events are being more evenly distributed to other cities.

 

  1. London

London held 153 events in 2016, remaining consistently in fifth place for events as well as attendees (91,756).

 

  1. Singapore

With 151 meetings, Singapore is the most prolific conference city outside of Europe. Despite its small size, the city-state still attracted more events than all Asian countries except China, Japan, South Korea and Thailand.

 

7 & 8. Amsterdam & Madrid

The Dutch and Spanish capitals both held a joint 144 meetings last year. Madrid dropped two places from the previous year, while Amsterdam rose from 12th place to enter the top 10.

 

  1. Lisbon

Lisbon remains unchanged from 2015 with 138 events held last year, but the Portuguese capital is considerably further down the list in terms of attendance (38,753).

 

  1. Seoul

Another new arrival in the top 10, the South Korean city hosted 137 events drawing the second highest number of participants in the world at 104,780.

 

What about Australia?

Australian cities haven’t broken into the international top 10 yet. In fact, we don’t even break the top 40.

Last year, Sydney placed 41st (with 61 events) and Melbourne 44th (58 events). Australia places 16th overall in the country rankings and fourth in Asia-Pacific behind China, Japan and South Korea, which is the best that could be hoped considering our isolation.

Despite the travel time involved in getting here, Australia remains a highly attractive destination for international meetings and conferences.

According to Tourism Australia research, Australia has an above-average appreciation index of 8.3, with 22 percent of participants rating the country 10/10 and 93 percent saying they would choose Australia as an event destination over other countries a similar distance away.

International delegates rate Australia number one for scenery, sightseeing and excitement. In terms of local expertise, the healthcare sciences were singled out for special praise.

 

Keep up with traveller trends

Find out the biggest trends and challenges facing MICE travel in Australia by attending the year’s key industry event.

The Travel Industry Exhibition is coming to Sydney’s Darling Harbour from 21-22 August 2018.

 

 

Sources

International Congress and Convention Association. 2016 ICCA Statistics Report Country & City Rankings. www.iccaworld.org

Tourism Australia. New Research on Association Conference Delegate Behaviour. http://www.tourism.australia.com/content/dam/assets/document/1/6/w/u/n/2002127.pdf