Seoul Convention Bureau (SCB) has rolled out new PLUS SEOUL program to encourage the boost of MICE industry in Seoul with further extra support programs in response to COVID-19. While Seoul Metropolitan government put together operative response plans that the enterprises and citizens of Seoul can take advantage of, the PLUS SEOUL program of Seoul Convention Bureau focuses to aid the MICE industry of the city. On top of the purpose of ‘boosting business event experience with lasting memories and bonds,’ 2020 version has response and recovery plans in regards to the global outbreak of COVID-19.
2020 PLUS SEOUL program also reflects what Seoul Convention Bureau values the most in implementing services for the MICE industry in Seoul, the sustainable development for the people and the community involved. For more MICE events to be supported, it lowered the minimum number of international participants required to apply for the program. The minimum number was brought down from 500 to 200 for all international conferences. And for the conferences be postponed but hosted within the year 2020 are to be offered 10% more of the pre-approved financial support. The minimum number was lowered from 50 to 20 for corporate meetings and incentive tours and one extra benefit is to be added on top of the benefits selected by the company.
One of the biggest strengths of PLUS SEOUL program which received the most satisfaction from the participants is the customized programs to boost belongingness to their companies. These are still core part of the PLUS SEOUL program for corporate meetings and incentive tours with addition of newly introduced options, such as Seoul Customized Welcome Drinks, On-Spot Photo-booth, Food Trucks, AI Robot Rental and Event App Development services. To promote paperless conferences, PLUS SEOUL proposes the digital means to replace it such as customized apps during the event. Further extending the sustainability, donation is made to the local organization under the name of the event or host organization as a token of expressing appreciation for choosing to be eco-friendly. Welcoming the companions of MICE participants with 1-day tour programs or meal cards is also new program to reflect the needs and trends, as well as AI Robot Rental, Airport Concierge Desk, and Open Session for the Public. SCB carefully organized the program in seeking to bring more MICE events with revamped program in response to COVID-19 and possibly help the MICE industry in Seoul to recover sooner.
SCB set up the Seoul MICE Support Center as an immediate response center in early February and started gathering examples of situations, matters and concerns occurred due to the COVID-19 outbreak from both private sector SMEs and stakeholder associations. Practical consultations from the professionals in various fields such as in labor, accounting, taxation, administration and management and law, are offered to aid MICE industry of Seoul to better face the challenges in hands. Preparing the supplementary documents to apply for different government support programs is one of the common consultation topics upon introducing and explaining of such programs. The center also acts as the essential resource center for SMEs in MICE industry that hand sanitizers, facial masks and COVID-19 Guidance posters are available.
When Seoul Convention Bureau values and reinforces the partnership, it takes the whole country into account. Through the Co-marketing program, Seoul is building the valuable partnership with other cities in Korea, even though the official MOU signing are on pause due to the outbreak. As long as the group has more than 20 International MICE participants, whether they attend a conference, a meeting, an incentive tour, or an exhibition, they are eligible to apply for this program upon having one-night stay in Seoul and travelling to different regions in Korea. The list was short to start with however, it gives much more choices for the MICE participants in 2020. Building the solid and firm partnership is building the foundation of the strengths to bounce back. MICE industry serves as a ground to provide opportunities for people to be connected, to find the belongingness and to further improve the world we live in. To amplify this core value of the industry, Seoul Convention Bureau is dedicating to stand strong in alliance, between public and private, environment and people and events and participants.
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