SRI LANKA POSITIONS ITSELF AS A PREFERRED MICE DESTINATION

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The Sri Lanka Convention Bureau (SLCB) in collaboration with Sri Lanka Consulate General in Mumbai organised the Sri Lankan MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Events) Promotion events in Mumbai on Nov 13 and and in Pune on Nov 15, 2019. Chamari Rodrigo, Consul General, of Sri Lanka, Mumbai and Malkanthi Welikala, Manager Marketing, Sri Lanka Convention Bureau elaborated on the unique offerings in the MICE category for Indian travellers in Sri Lanka.

The event established Sri Lanka as a cost efficient and attractive destination for global corporate events. Further, these events highlighted new attractions in the MICE segment, favourable polices and explored opportunities for mutual contribution towards further growth of the number of Indian MICE tourists, visiting Sri Lanka.

Malkanthi Welikala, Manager Marketing, SLCB, mentioned stating, “There is an existing strong cultural bond and cooperation between India and Sri Lanka, which makes Indian travellers feel at home while they are in Sri Lanka.” She also added that Kandy and Galle are attractive options for the MICE sector.

The year 2018 saw 63,733 MICE arrivals in Sri Lanka as compared to 57,694 in 2017 and 53,510 in 2016. Overall the year 2018 saw a rapid increase with approximately 424,887 Indian tourists visiting Sri Lanka, as compared to 384,628 arrivals in 2017 and 356,729 in 2016.

The country is a top-notch tourist destination and known as the Wonder of Asia for its long-pre-served culture and heritage. Chamari Rodrigo, Consul General, of Sri Lanka, Mumbai said, “With 7 national parks, extensive yoga and meditation programmes, cultural trails, surfing festivals and other adrenaline-packed water sports, Sri Lanka aims to add value to the MICE sector and bleisure travel.”

The extensive direct airlines connectivity of 121 flights per week from 11 stations in India to Sri Lanka makes it easily accessible. Apart from a sound connectivity, the simplified visa process, with a tourist visa-on-arrival policy until January 2020 (subject to extension), is another factor that makes Sri Lanka a truly favourable destination.

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