According to a study by UNICEO, the various terrorist attacks in Europe in the last two years have left their mark on the MICE sector. Although an increase in cancellations of corporate events has not been noticed, there have been changes in factors such as the choice of destinations, the security measures offered or the planning arrangements.
Corporate events involve travel and the use of transportation, the agglomeration of people and the use of public places, so the rise of terrorism has had an undeniable effect on this sector. Although cancellations of events have been sparse, and there have not been many changes in terms of the duration of events or number of participants, there has indeed been a change of awareness in many cases.
The safety of travellers has gone in a short time from being seen as “vital or very important” by 45% of companies to 85% today. In fact, according to the study, it is the main factor when deciding on the destination of an event, ranking above the price factor. Also, 20% of companies have increased their security budget, and more than half of the respondents state that their company has its own security rules, which are communicated confidentially to employees, either by intranet, internal newsletter or through the booking tools themselves. Meanwhile, only 14% of respondents stated that they did not have a security policy.
As for destinations, there are certain places that companies tend to avoid. These include Turkey, Tunisia and Ukraine, and the Middle East and Africa in general. A special case is that of France and Belgium, since, according to respondents, these destinations have improved their security after the attacks they suffered recently. In fact, 64% of respondents believe that these two countries do not need to be included in the list of countries at risk because they have implemented some robust security measures. Another observed change is an increase in the choice of domestic destinations (27%) compared to international destinations.
UNICEO (United Networks of International Corporate Event Organizers) conducted this study, entitled “Security in corporate events in a new crisis environment. The impact of terrorism on corporate events”, after holding interviews with more than 1,200 corporate event planners from around the world.