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March 28, 2007

Day 2:Korea MICE Expo LIVE

While South Korea's capital, Seoul, is enjoying well-deserved attention from the MICE world, it is important not to let Seoul's ever-so-bright shine obscure your sight from the other destinations the country has to offer. While Seoul is modern and polished, other regions will offer MICE delegates nature and harmony which may not be found in the busy, highly-populated capital.

A couple of cities to especially keep your eyes on are Busan, South Korea's port city down south, and also Jeju Island, South Korea's very own slice of paradise, situated further south.



Ms. Evelyn Ko, Global Marketing Manager of the MICE Strategic Planning team at Korea Tourism Organization (KTO), says that while Seoul may be a favourite choice for larger venues, Busan and Jeju are ideal for MICE events of a smaller scale, or for MICE delegates who want something a little different, in a more relaxed setting. Including Seoul, there are nine regions with their own Convention and Visitor Bureaus (CVBs) and convention centers, and while Ms. Ko says that all the regions are attractive in their own way, Busan and Jeju are definitely the up and coming areas for MICE. "Destinations like Busan and Jeju have the sea, beach and such beautiful nature while also offering the convenience of a city, making it ideal for a relaxed MICE event.” says Ms. Ko. While Seoul is close to South Korea's international air hub, Incheon International Airport, Busan and Jeju are close to the sea, which makes them popular with neighbouring Japan, from and to which ferry transport is also possible.

Busan is close to Gimhae International Airport, which is served by 21 airlines offering over 462 scheduled flights per week. Ms. Jihye Jang, Assistant Manager at the PR Marketing Team of Busan CVB tells MEETINGS:review "Busan may not be as accessible as Seoul in terms of location and direct route connection for international delegates, but it is well-connected domestically. At the end of the day, if delegates travel just an hour by air from Seoul to Busan or two and a half hours by KTX, Korea's express rail service, they can enjoy a one-stop area with business and leisure rolled into one.” Ms. Jang explains that one of Busan's strengths is the fact that hotels, convention facilities and shopping and entertainment facilities are all within ten minutes of each other.

As for Jeju, it has direct connection to Japan's Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya, and Fukuoka and Shanghai and Beijing, China. Domestic airlines (13 lines, 81 flights a day) transport 16,000 passengers in a day. Especially, there are 40 double-trip flights from and to Seoul in a day.


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