Since it was established in March 2013, the Abu Dhabi Convention Bureau has been driving and promoting the business events industry throughout the emirate with the mission to position Abu Dhabi as the prime global business events destination.The Convention Bureau acts as the go-to organisation where event organisers can receive advice and assistance with event planning, researching bid opportunities as well as assistance with a tailored bid strategy to ensure competitiveness, providing destination promotional collateral and boosting delegate numbers through the authority’s international offices. Abu Dhabi is a hidden gem for association organisers seeking the ideal MICE destination. Jean Martins, South Africa country manager for Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority (TCA), shares what makes this convention bureau so unique. What does the Abu Dhabi Convention Bureau offer exhibition organisers?
It’s a body of about 30 people in Abu Dhabi and they provide any assistance that any convention would need in terms of VISA support, venue searches, price negotiation, etc. They offer a fully comprehensive MICE service that one would need as an international event organiser.
How does the MICE industry in the Middle East compare to that of South Africa?
It is much larger with Dubai being one of the convention capitals of the world, and Abu Dhabi is following suit as an up and coming MICE destination. In the last couple of years Abu Dhabi has hosted many high profile events and there are several conventions still to come, this along with the world-class facilities has caused the industry in Abu Dhabi to show immense growth.
It’s a matter of having that extra bit of support. International convention organisers who go to a different country may face challenges relating to not knowing the customs or governmental procedures, so the Bureau will be able to assist with general event planning such as speakers and venue searches as well as getting the appropriate governmental organisations involved. Essentially the Abu Dhabi Convention Bureau is there to ensure a seamless and successful event. What makes Abu Dhabi an attractive events destination?
The setting is truly beautiful. Convention organisers can select which kind of experience is best suited to their vision for their event. Abu Dhabi offers diversity in the form of beautiful beaches, authentic and cultural desert experiences as well as a world-class city.
The infrastructure is very good and everything is modern and contained, making exploring this city an absolute pleasure. What are your top tips for event organisers seeking to host an event in Abu Dhabi?
- Link with a reputable DMC
- Request the assistance of the Bureau to help arrange VISAs, etc.
- Contact TCA to get assistance with meeting event requirements