by Suman Gupta
Mumbai, December 2017: Mumbai & Delhi have been identified as primary markets to source MICE movements into Oman. Agents from major agencies in these markets recently witnessed Oman’s offerings as a MICE destination on a familiarization (FAM) trip conducted by the Ministry of Oman Tourism. The group consisted of 9 shortlisted agents from leading travel companies like Via.com, Goomo Orbit Corporate & Leisure Travels, Geanis Holidays Pvt Ltd., Travel Clinic, HRG India, Thomas Cook, Ambassador Express Holidays Pvt. Ltd. and Fountain Head Corporate Journeys.
The group explored a completely different side of Middle East in Oman, showcasing regions amidst the desert and the sea; combined with authentic Arabian experience, rich history and culture, beauty of nature, lip-smacking cuisine, adventure activities and many hotel inspections. Highlight of the trip was their visit to the recently opened first phase of the Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre which is located opposite the new Muscat International Airport. It includes an exhibition hall spread over 22,000 sq m and 10-12 meeting rooms around it. Phase two will be completed by the second quarter of 2018 and will include a convention hall. Recently, the OCEC hosted ‘ICCA Oman Meetings Association Expert Forum’ and ‘UNWTO/UNESCO conference on Tourism and Culture’ that have been landmark events.
Lubaina Sheerazi, India Representative, Ministry of Tourism, Oman said, “Oman’s new national strategy for tourism underlines MICE as one of the main focus areas. Increase in number of flights from India to Oman, ongoing construction of many new international hotel chains, soon-to-be-launched new Muscat International Airport and upcoming phase II of the Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre (OCEC) will bring momentum to this plan in the coming year.”
This familiarization trip has aimed to showcase Oman as a luxury and premium tourist destination for all segments across MICE. Being a short-haul destination from India, excellent flight connectivity, varied experiences and activities to offer, and now with the rapid development of infrastructure; Oman is becoming a sought-after destination for MICE in the Middle East region.