Mumbai: With a sharp focus on the restart of MICE travel, Thomas Cook (India) Ltd., India’s leading integrated travel services company, launched a strategic corporate outreach – India’s first such physical MICE event since lockdown, in partnership with Marriott International. The event, aimed at bringing back confidence in MICE travel, saw active participation from over 80 of India’s leading corporates. Thomas Cook India’s Assured-Insured-Securedprogram, together with Marriott International’s Commitment to Clean, served to build confidence and add reassurance towards MICE travel in the new normal.
The keynote address was delivered by Mr. Madhavan Menon, Chairman and Managing Director, Thomas Cook India and Ms. Ranju Alex, Market Vice President, West India – Marriott International.
Destination India presents a significant yet underleveraged opportunity for the MICE sector and to inspire MICE decision-makers, Thomas Cook India’s MICE event in partnership with Marriott International, was themed, ‘Discover the World in Incredible India’. The inaugural address by Mr. Menon and Ms. Alex, was followed by an insightful panel discussion that deliberated on the future of MICE travel – moderated by Mr. Rajeev Kale, President & Country Head – MICE, Holidays, Visa & Passport Services, Thomas Cook India. The vibrant interaction included dialogue around the potential of India as a MICE destination, digital, physical and hybrid MICE programs and the new travel normal for MICE.
An interactive MICE Travel Mart was then inaugurated, offering the corporates an opportunity to interact with over 20 participating Marriott hotels that represented top MICE locales across India; also Dubai & Thailand. Each Marriott representative presented a range of offerings/USPs of their respective hotel with personalised options to support the corporates in booking their next incentive/conference in India. The New Zealand Tourism Board was present to highlight their MICE programs and welcome India’s travellers back once borders are reopened for the destination.
The Corporates present were given a preview of Thomas Cook India’s innovative #NextinMICE portfolio:
· Dream Voucher: an exclusive selection of travel vouchers to delight top performers and partners
· Digital Events & Engagements: strategically designed with cutting edge technology to inspire and deliver precise objectives
· Staycations/Meetings Around the Corner: experiential venues within driving distance from all major metros
· Gourmet Genie: personalised dining experiences at one’s doorstep
· Strategic Communication and Collateral Design: innovative solutions and designs
Cuisine forms an intrinsic element of every MICE tour and hence the corporates were presented with eclectic dining experiences that represented the best of India’s famed cuisines; also cosmopolitan flavours crafted by Marriott’s expert team of chefs.
Mr. Rajeev Kale, President & Country Head – Holidays, MICE, Visa, Thomas Cook (India) Ltd. said, “I am delighted with the overwhelming corporate attendance and participation for the first of its kind physical, MICE-focused event. This valuable partnership with Marriott is aimed at inspiring our corporate decision makers and building confidence in travel – while simultaneously putting the spotlight on incredible India. The in-person format created a vibrant platform for discussion and innovation and has been valuable in addressing queries for MICE travel in the new normal. Given its success, we hope to spearhead many more initiatives in the near future.”
Mr. Neeraj Govil – Senior Vice President of Operations, APEC, Marriott International said “With the MICE industry gradually opening up across markets, our partnership with Thomas Cook India has turned out to be extremely beneficial in restoring guest’s confidence for business travel. Given the impact and the transient phase of travel, the reinvention of MICE will be a definitive focus in the new normal. Domestic tourism is currently at its peak and customers are constantly looking for services that work best with socially distanced norms. The MICE Travel Mart addressed accurate measures keeping in mind the recalibrated approach for travellers who now feel confident about stepping out for business.”
Mr. Navin Tewari, CEO – Capital Foods, said, “The MICE Travel Mart by Thomas Cook India and Marriott International was very well organized and left us with a fantastic feeling about the future of physical MICE events. The teams took great care to ensure that all the necessary health and sanitation precautions were in place. As an organization, we value face to face interaction that helps us create stronger bonds with our team members. With limited international borders being reopened, why should I not explore fantastic experiential destinations in Incredible India as showcased by Thomas Cook India? And this event has certainly helped us with great insights into the new normal for MICE making us more confident of our future bookings and reassured that we have the best travel partner in Thomas Cook India.”
Assured Insured Secured Program: To ensure the health and safety of customers, Thomas Cook India has put together a holistic three-pronged customer confidence-building program in the form of Assured-Insured-Secured that covers every aspect of physical safety as well as mental and financial security to give the customer complete peace of mind. The company has launched several meaningful initiatives: The Assured Safe Travel Program and Doctor on Call 24×7 service in partnership with Apollo Clinics; India’s first Safe Holiday Helpline, a free service offering expert guidance & assistance for safe holiday planning, visa assistance, country-specific updates, on-ground health and safety measures, health certification, etc. and seamless COVID-negative certification services via a tie-up with ICMR accredited labs.