Despite the development of telecommunications and the current financial crisis, the need for direct contact has always existed and will always be there.
We know that the first organized travel happened within the framework of a congress visit in 1841, when Thomas Cook arranged the transportation for 570 participants of the annual congress of the Antialcoholics Association.
It is only in direct contact with people that we can gain a real impression about their professionalism, reliability and competency, and this is the thing that will always urge us to engage in some kind of direct gatherings.
In my opinion, MICE tourism is the most rewarding type of tourism for the development of a certain destination. Not only does it have a good influence on the extension of the tourism season, which is – when it comes to destinations such as Montenegro – perhaps the most important factor, but it also boosts the development of other tourism forms.
Imagine just one incentive group that is supposed to experience Montenegro in a special way. Their travel arrangement must to some extent also contain some features of adventure tourism, eco-tourism, events tourism…
With the above mentioned we could satisfy even the most demanding requests, and we could also keep pace with the world trends. MICE tourism urges us to constantly improve our offers. Although we are labeled as an eco-friendly country, the constantly increasing demand for green destinations stimulates us to undertake even more serious measures in order to protect the environment.
One can say for Montenegro that it is a young MICE destination. It is encouraging that in the last couple of years the hotels have invested into the amelioration of the quality of their offers, so that today we have an increasing number of excellent four and five-star hotels.
The awareness about the development of MICE tourism in Montenegro gave the incentive for the formation of the Montenegro Convention Bureau, and recently also the first Congress Center in Montenegro opened, operating as part of the hotel „Mediteran“ in Bečići.
The congress center consists of two floors and encompasses the following: an amphiteatre, several various conference halls, cabins for interpreters, journalists and commentators, an exclusive foayer with a cafe bar, a VIP room, break-out rooms, offices and supporting facilities.
Although it started operating only in May, the Congress Center Mediteran has already hosted a few large congresses and several smaller seminars, and this speaks in favour of the fact that Montenegro needed such a comprehensive institution.
The best proof of the satisfaction felt by the guests who had the opportunity to organize or just participate in some of the conferences organized in the new congress center, are their own references:
„With your help we have organized one of the most successful conferences in the 15-year history of Combined Endeavor. It has been a great pleasure for me, as the Chief of the Montenegro delegation for Combined Endeavor 2009, to hear from the participants praises about the planning, organization and realization of the FPC CE 2009. Owing to the grand success of this conference, Montenegro has already been chosen to host the next FPC CE 2010. On behalf of the Ministry of Defence, The Montenegrinian Army and USEUCOM I want to thank you for the excellent service, kindness and professionalism of the whole hotel team“, said lieutenant colonel Božo Đurović.
„As the organizor of the 9th SEEC conference in your hotel, I believe that you have reached the top when it comes to technical possibilities, but also in matters of precise realization of agreed services and superb kindness and correct behaviour of the hotel staff. Thank you once again for the successful realization of the conference“, said lieutenant colonel Željko Popović.
The further development of MICE tourism in Montenegro is very important for its proper positioning on the market.
Above all, it is necessary that we team up as a region and create, in cooperation with other Southeast European countries, a unique image in Europe.
After that, each of the countries – members of the region – will find, with its specifics, guests for itself. The same principle should be used also within the country. However, Montenegro is not such a large country where marketing for single subjects would be reasonable.
Therefore, we should have a joint market image and invest jointly in the promotion of the whole country. In this way, if we show ourselves as a destination that is worth visiting, then where there is a job for one, there will be jobs for everybody.