MEHK, the meetings and exhibitions division of the Hong Kong Tourism Board, is keen to grow its cruise offerings for business events.
“It is common for business travellers to make frequent trips to Hong Kong, and they have probably done it and seen it all, so we think that it’s time that they are introduced to the cruise option,” said Simon Lo, manager, marketing services & operations, MEHK.
It helps that Hong Kong is a busy port city frequented by a number of cruise liners such as the Royal Caribbean Cruises and the Dream Cruises. What needs to be addressed are, however, the misconceptions towards cruise trips for business events.
Crystal Campbell, managing director of Royal Caribbean International Hong Kong, pointed out that unlike holiday makers, cruise participants on business events are required to continue working even though they are out on the sea.
“It’s important that cruise ships are equipped with WiFi facilities with decent internet speed to allow participants to check their emails,” said Campbell.
Another misconception is about the cost and the limited variety of teambuilding activities that can be carried out on cruises. Again, Lo said MICE cruises can be part of a new experience to delegates.
"What many do not know is that you can do bungee jumping on a cruise ship," said Campbell. She added that the cruise option could be more cost-efficient since meals are often inclusive of the package offered to event planners.