Singapore welcomes back vaccinated travellers
Singapore welcomes back vaccinated travellers
All international MICE travellers are now being invited back to the Southeast Asian economic powerhouse, the perfect stage for the world to meet, stage large events and interact with communities that have long been separated.
Singapore and the Pandemic
Despite the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the entire global MICE industry, Singapore has been able to navigate the challenges faced and, in fact, use the crisis as an opportunity for development and innovation.
At its foundation, Singapore has long been a Global-Asia Node for MICE, with an extensive experience hosting large international business events. Through events, Singapore positions itself as a home for important discourse on critical topics that impact the region and world, such as sustainability and climate change.
During the deeply uncertain times caused by the pandemic, Singapore was still able to attract two large scale international events in November 2020; SFFxSWITCH2020 and TravelRevive2020. With TravelRevive 2020 being the first international travel tradeshow to take place physically in the Asia Pacific region during Covid-19, hybrid technologies and safety protocols that have now become the global norm for events, were put on trial for the first time in Singapore.
These critical experimentations demonstrate the pioneering efforts of Singapore to be at the vanguard of global innovation, solidifying its reputation as a world-leader for modernisation and adaptability in the global MICE industry.
Innovation in hybrid events were not only piloted but were recognised as a needed area of infrastructure development. During August 2020, the Singapore-based Integrated Resort, Marina Bay Sands launched a state-of-the-art hybrid event broadcast studio at its Sands Expo and Convention Centre.
The studio is a cutting-edge, stage fitted with an immersive backdrop and floor that can be reconfigured to fit every event’s needs. The hybrid broadcast studio was a first for the industry which paved the way to define the hybrid revolution in the global MICE community.
Other venue studios include Shangri-La Hybrid Events which offers state of the art and flexible hybrid event solutions; experience infinite possibilities when hosting an event at Suntec Singapore’s Engage Theatres and Fairmont Singapore also scores high on thoughtful technology integration for different event types.
Looking beyond the pandemic
A key part of this vanguard action was not only hosting events but pushing forward intellectual debates around how the MICE industry can adapt and move forward beyond the pandemic.
Through research undertaken for whitepapers, Singapore was critical in supporting and upskilling the global MICE industry. Reimagining Business events- through Covid-19 and beyond, is a key example of how key MICE players in Singapore collaborated to create a whitepaper that investigated a research-based strategy to progress from the pandemic. Through such research, Singapore understood that the pandemic has changed the way operations are run in all industries, and the transformations that were made during the pandemic needed to have a continued legacy. As Singapore transitions into a Covid-resilient state, the country aims to offer peace of mind to travellers, event owners, organisers, planners, and delegates who come to visit and do business here.
For instance, the SG Clean campaign, launched at the start of the pandemic by the National Environment Agency (NEA), rallied stakeholders to adopt good personal habits and to raise standards of cleanliness and public hygiene. This early action from NEA has set high standards throughout Singaporean society, implementing a legacy that will hold the country in good stead to deal with any variations of Covid-19 and future pandemics.
The Singapore Tourism Board has also implemented SingapoReimagine, an initiative launched in November 2020, to rally local and global communities to envision a new standard of travel, based around elevated standards of technology, sustainability and heightened safety. This initiative aims to not only to raise the experiences of travel for Singaporean visitors but become a global example for destination management for the global MICE industry.
The return of events
Singapore’s clear strategy and innovative action during the pandemic has left the country in a strong position to secure large scale international events in the future. In January 2022, as the Omicron wave of Covid-19 was gripping international headlines, confidence was cemented in Singapore as it was announced that the Formula 1 Singapore Grand Prix would continue for another seven years, from 2022 to 2028.
In November 2021, Asia’s most influential aerospace and defence event, Singapore Airshow, concluded a strategic media and knowledge partnership with Aviation Week Network, the largest multimedia information and services provider for the global aviation, aerospace, and defence industries.
Greg Hamilton, president of Aviation Week Network, commented the reasons for its strategic partnership with Singapore Airshow: “Our strategic partnership with Singapore Airshow strengthens our ongoing strategy to provide comprehensive insight, intelligence and connections across our core communities within aviation, aerospace and defence.” This partnership highlights the influence of the Singapore Airshow at effectively connecting key stakeholders with broad and ‘core’ communities.
Additionally, in the short term, look out for international events being hosted in Singapore this year
- CAA International Cocoa Conference 2022 (1-2 September)
- The Singapore Business Show (28-29 September)
- Agri-Food Tech Expo Asia (26-28 October)
Singapore also offers the ‘In Singapore Incentives & Rewards (INSPIRE) Global’ programme. Qualified MICE groups will get to choose from a suite of Singapore experiences from dining, attractions, thematic tours, team-building and retail experiences to complement itineraries to Singapore.
Qualified MICE groups have to be between 20 - 250 foreign delegates, and stay a minimum of three days in Singapore.
Experiences include hosting a reception in a tranquil setting of lush greenery of the Ginger Garden in the Singapore Botanic Gardens, a private booking of the Supertree Observatory which offers unobstructed views of the Gardens, a unique, guided art experience through the National Gallery Singapore with rich and captivating narratives, reigniting your senses and discovering Little India through delightful spices or take a wellness break amidst the bustle of the city and let Urban Yogis bring you on a yoga journey to de-stress.
As the events industry emerges from the pandemic, Singapore has throughout presented itself as an innovator and leader for global MICE. Singapore is now fully open for events, but in all honesty, it was never really closed.