Within the business travel industry, you will often hear the word ‘MICE’ thrown around a lot. While this may cause some small amount of confusion, it is not what it sounds like; it has nothing to do with little rodents at all.
MICE is an acronym that refers to a niche subset of business related travel. In essence, it is a branch of the travel market which is dedicated to planning and booking meetings, seminars, conferences, etc,. Thus, MICE stands for Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, Exhibitions.
Let’s take a closer look at what MICE travel is, and what those in the MICE travel industry do.
What Do MICE Agencies Do?
A travel agency that specializes in MICE travel, will typically have a slightly more targeted and ‘hands-on’ approach to their travel services. Due to the fact that MICE is directly related to corporate travel, MICE travel agencies will need to help facilitate larger groups and events as part of their services. Let’s break it down letter-by-letter.
Every year millions of flights are purchased for the express purpose of going to a meeting. Whether it be for sporting events, corporate meetings, political meetings, you name it.
A meeting can simply be defined as whenever a group of people come together for a one-time event. In the MICE industry, the ‘meetings’ portion is the most commonly recognized and used.
Incentives typically refers to any related trip or vacation that is given as an award, or some sort of ‘incentive’ to an employee. While these are typically non-work related, they are usually booked as a result of a ‘job well done’.
‘Incentives’ can include trips as a result of bonuses, performance rewards, or simply company raffles or corporate team wellness trips.
It isn’t uncommon for companies or corporate entities to send employees or reps to conferences across the globe. In addition, sometimes corporate entities choose to host these conferences. Within the MICE industry, a MICE agency will help book and facilitate the hosting of these conference events.
While this may seem like the exact same thing as ‘conferences’, it does differ slightly. Exhibitions can be any kind of promotional, or recreational corporate event. This can be sponsored concerts, sporting events, competitions, team building events, the list goes on.
In the MICE industry, the ‘exhibitions’ portion can have an endless list of meanings and applications in which the promotional event is the center of the focus.
How Do MICE Agencies Differ From Normal Travel Agencies?
In the case of MICE events, MICE agencies will be required to organize and facilitate quite a bit more than a normal travel agency. Depending on the type of event, MICE agencies can be directly in charge of a long list of booking and organizing responsibilities. These can include:
- Hotel rooms
- Conference facilities
- Catering services
- Itinerary planning
MICE travel agents will go to incredible lengths to help you plan your entire event, no matter which spectrum of MICE it falls under. MICE is a massive portion of global travel each and every year. It’s no secret why MICE travel agencies have worked so hard to hone their craft, and make corporate related travel that much better.