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Thailands MICE Industry Case Study


Thailands MICE GDP 2017 - 2021

The Phuket Event Company is Thailand’s and the region’s most experienced MICE planner, as experienced planners we created this case study of the MICE industry in Thailand over the last 5 years.


Thailand has become one of the leading destinations for hosting MICE tourism with a strong dedicated government backing the MICE industry. This article covers an aggregate GDP of MICE industry in Thailand and factors that makes Thailand appealing to host MICE events. 


What was Thailand’s total income from MICE in 2017 to 2021?

฿231.2 Billion baht for 2017
฿212.9 Billion baht for 2018
฿221.5 Billion baht for 2019
฿57.8 Billion baht for 2020
฿40.8 Billion baht for 2021


The Thai MICE market will lose more than 65 percent of its revenue in 2020, when it closes its borders from March 23, 2020. It is predicted that the industry will suffer significant losses in 2021 due to the continuing epidemic.


According to 2021 statistics on MICE participation, 55.4 percent or 375,094 people used internet platforms to participate in events, while 44.6% or 302,312 people attended them on-site. This statistic demonstrates how successful it is in utilising technologies to improve online MICE activity.


The revenue from MICE has decreased by 63.8% to 40.8 million baht from April to June 2021, whereas income from domestic exhibitions was 26 million baht, down 74.7 percent year-on-year. Many business operators have closed, laid off employees, or halted operations as a result of the epidemic.


Meeting Events

Thailand offers the most affordable hotels in the world to organise meetings and conferences. However, it is always a good idea to get an event company to organise all the audio/video equipment rental requirements, as the (hotels) don’t always have the latest equipment. Meetings in Thailand is a popular choice because there are a lot of activities to do and places to see in between the events for the attendees that can improve the overall morale which is a huge selling point. 

Incentive Events

If you are looking to get the most value out of your money, there isn’t any other MICE destination apart from Thailand for you. From having cocktails and dinner on a skyscraper in Bangkok to visiting the beaches in the South (Phuket), from mesmerising beauty of the mountainous landscape of the west to exciting nightlife, there is something for every taste in Thailand. Hence proving it to be the best destination for your incentive events.


Incentive programs in Thailand are becoming increasingly popular, as the government continues to lay out initiatives to turn MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions) into one of Thailand’s major economic pillars. According to the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), Thailand is expected to earn around US$6.3 billion.

Bangkok Post reports that TAT Governor Yuthasak Supasorn boasted that MICE has experienced considerable development in the last five years, despite a sluggish economy, and its contribution to GDP is growing at an annual rate of 20-25%. According to his calculations.

Conference Events

Holding a conference event in thailand became even more popular because many of tourist agencies are selling many conference events packages in thailand to their clients.

So, many of you have a question – why should I choose thailand for holding a business event? What is the unique selling propositions of choosing Thailand as a venue? Let us share what we know after working on many events in thailand. Here are some good reasons that make Thailand an attractive offer.

1) You can choose from a variety of destination choices in Thailand, including Bangkok, Phuket, Pattaya and Chiang Mai conference venues.

2) Most hotels offer function rooms especially designed for business meetings and conventions. Meeting spaces are well equipped with audio-visual equipment necessary to make all your presentations run smoothly. You can find different types of room from the huge hall, medium hall and boardroom to a cozy round table in your hotel.

3) The venues are conveniently located in the heart of Bangkok , Pattaya and Chiang Mai city so it is easy for delegates to go around to visit other sights in Thailand or do some shopping.

4) There are several choices of hotels ranging from 5-start luxury to budget accommodations . You have a choice of room according to your need and budget.

5) Thailand has a lot of outstanding tourist attractions so you can plan a short sightseeing tour for your delegates after the conference.

6) The climate in Thailand is pleasant all year round. Though there are three seasons – hot season , rainy season and cool season – it is still a perfect place to hold a meeting.

7) The culture of the people here is unique, warm and friendly so you can expect a great hospitality from your hosts.

8) There are many restaurants offering different choices of cuisines from local Thai food, Japanese cuisine , Indian dishes to international foods.

9) You can hold several conferences in Thailand in one year. The country has many international events such as ASEAN Summit and APEC.

10) There are a lot of things to see and do here; you will never run out of activities for your delegates, There are great meeting planners that can give your event an amazing itinerary to organise pre and post tours or CSR programs for your company. 


Looking to arrange a conference where you can leave a deep impact on attendees?


Thailand is the best destination offering anything a successful conference needs to have in a destination. 

There are so many hotels in Thailand that you will be spoiled for choice to pick one.

Most of the hotels in the Kingdom of Thailand not only offer all the amenities one can think of but also offer the most reasonable rates when compared to other MICE destinations. Most of them offer built-in facilities like projectors, podiums, screens, stage, etc. but they can be relatively basic, but if you have higher specifications for your conference hiring a local event organiser in Thailand can ensure the smooth running of your conference. 

Exhibition Events

Thailand plans to be more specialized in its international exhibition marketing in 2021, giving top priority to 12 key industries to promote national development and emphasize the Asian market.


The government expects the MICE industry to generate $23 billion baht in revenue by collaborating with 58 potential foreign exhibitions.

No matter which industry you are in, if you are looking to promote your business by exhibiting in trade fairs, Thailand is the destination you don’t want to miss.


There are many exhibition and convention centers in Thailand that offer the best facilities for any size of the exhibition and professional MICE planners that can help you with your event.


All year long, there are fairs being organised for different industries, and businesses from all over the world feature their booths in these events. These promotions run for multiple days and there are many places to visit.

Thailand Emerging as the Prime Destination for MICE Tourism in the World

Thailand has a rich environment and state interest in promoting MICE and is eager to cement its place by facilitating the corporate world to savour the natural landscape and be entertained with award winning facilities in the world-renowned hospitality venues.

From 2017 to 2019, Thailand has received 3.5 million MICE attendees.

The breakdown of number of MICE attendees over the last five years:

The breakdown of number of MICE attendees over the last five years:


Top ten MICE attendees include participants from China, India, Singapore, Malaysia, Japan, South Korea, Indonesia, United States of America, Hong Kong and Philippines. MICE industry alone has contributed in an estimated job creation of around 180 thousand and is a huge contributor in economic elevation.


According to the most recent data available for 2021, there were roughly 700,000 MICE participation events in 2021. The statistics demonstrate that 55.4 percent of the 375,094 people who attended the events used online platforms like zoom or teams in a hybrid event setting. On-site attendance of events was fell lower at 44.6 percent or 324,312 people attending events on site.

The breakdown of number of MICE attendees over the last three years:

MICE Thailand Attendees by sector infographics 1

Following Pie Chart shows MICE attendees by Continent over the past three years
(2017, 2018, and 2019)

MICE Thailand Attendees by country infographics

The most favorite Thai cities for MICE attendees are:



01. Bangkok
02. Phuket

03 Pattaya
04 Chiang Mai

05 Khon Kae

Role in Thai Economy

Just to get an idea of how MICE plays a role in the economy, let’s take an example of 2018’s stats. During the fiscal year ending September 2018, 1.25 Million MICE attendees visited Thailand. This was 19.85% growth compared to FY2017. The revenue generated through these 1.25M visitors was THB95.6 billion. The average length of stay was five days with per person average spending of THB76,135.

The domestic MICE visitors reached 33,011,322, generating revenue of THB117.3 billion for the economy.

Why is Thailand a popular MICE destination?

Thailand is taking no nonsense approach towards promoting the MICE tourism and is backing every aspect of the industry to give it a well-deserved boost. Thailand has been ranked highest in the ASEAN member countries and 25th in the world for hosting conventions. This ranking is awarded by the International Congress and Convention Association in their Country and City rankings.

Bangkok takes the major load of corporate events and host almost half of all MICE events and other emerging cities trailing closely like Chiang Mai, Pattaya, Phuket, Khon Kaen, Chiang Rai, Nakhon Ratchasima Udon Thani and Songkhala among others.

According to a survey done Thailand was ranked as number one among the most preferred MICE destination which the survey participants would like to revisit for their future business/MICE trips.

Main factors that helped Thailand rank number one compared with other MICE destinations:

Value for money
Variety of local & international cuisines
MICE Activities

Thailand already boasts excellent infrastructure, unmatched hospitality, awesome service standards, friendly people and amazing food and we are only scratching the surface yet. Following are some of the reasons that Thailand has become the favorite destination for MICE events.


Thailand falls in one of the most affordable destinations category. Being affordable makes it the favorite for MICE tourism. MICE venues, meeting arrangements, guest speakers, transportation and guest speakers, everything is affordable. While there is no compromise in quality, the affordability attracts the corporate sector to consider Thailand over the more expensive destinations.


Being one of the best overall travel destinations and supporting a huge tourism industry has already transformed Thailand in to a tourist heaven. The recognition of MICE by Thai government is helping these amazing places to be transformed into hotspots of such industry. Bangkok, Pattaya, Phuket and Chiang Mai display world class convention and exhibition centers and luxury traveling is experiencing a boost as well.

Smooth Access

Thailand is bringing its business facilities at par with some of the best in the world. Access to Thailand is easier than ever. Over 76 countries and territories are given either visa free or visa on arrival facilities. So, residents of those countries can just pack their bags and can access the country without any problem. Countries that do require visa can obtain and complete the process within two working days.

Exceptional Connectivity

Thailand has invested a great deal in providing world leading and award-winning airports that connect the country to the rest of the world. Suvarnabhumi airport connects Thailand with more than 80 scheduled airlines and coupled with state visa policy, it makes traveling to Thailand as easy as anything.

Entertaining Tours

Success of a MICE event is also dependent on the tours that the participants experience either before or after the conference. Those tours can be either within the same city or in the surroundings. Thailand has more than enough to make it an experience of a lifetime. 


Maya Bay is one of the most popular destination that attracts thousands of tourists every day. Myanmar is one of the favorite neighbouring destinations. Temple complexes, the Emerald Buddha and sea-based adventures are most visited places.

Business Minded

Whether you are a startup or a successful entrepreneur looking to meet up with like-minded people for networking. There are a lot of networking events organised in Thailand that you can attend. Thanks to these activities, Thailand has become a hub to bring businesses closer.  


There are many events where startups pitch their ideas in front of venture capitalists and manage to secure investments. So in order to materialise your business aspirations to become a cognitive enterprise, networking with like-minded individuals can play a vital role and Thailand is the place to be for this.

Network Ready Country

One of the most important factors in Thailand’s success as MICE destination is its adaption of the latest technologies. Ensuring the availability of lightning-fast Wi-Fi internet is one of the great examples of how Thailand is using innovation and the latest technologies in the event life cycle.


In all major cities, almost every hotel and restaurant is now connected and offers the customers connectivity. Event places that hold MICE events have high-speed connectivity as a must. Not only it helps the participants complete their routine tasks but it also helps the organisers to gauge and collect huge amounts of data from the attendees and create customised value propositions accordingly.

Infrastructure and Logistics

In a drive to become the favourite destination of corporate sector, Thai state is leaving no stone unturned to promote and develop the five main MICE cities and transforming their infrastructure and logistics so they suite the corporate sectors requirements. Thailand boasts over 900 conference rooms certified with TMVS all around the country. Policies and regulations are also being changed to accommodate the delegations. Direct flights to the main cities and light rail transit systems are the amenities that make it easier for delegates to choose such destinations.

MICE Ready

The State has gone leaps and bounds to get Thailand MICE ready. It engaged destination management companies, professional convention organisers and exhibition organisers to promote the infrastructure purpose built for MICE activities in convention centres, Exhibition centres and local attractions theme parks and entertainment destinations. State is not only facilitating but also promoting the MICE related activities

Business Events

Thailand is quickly gaining popularity as a business hub, especially among the growing economies. It hosts successful business events from small meetings to international trade fairs all year round. Attendees from all over the world visit Thailand to attend these events. 


Having hosted some of the largest business events in the past such as CEBIT ASEAN THAILAND 2018, FUTURE ENERGY ASIA 2018, IEEE 2018, SITE GLOBAL CONFERENCE 2019, CPHI 2019, and UFI GLOBAL 2019. Such successful event organisation made Thailand prominent on the corporate map and now Thailand is set to host multiple international events including ROUTES ASIA and 30TH CONFERENCE OF THE ASIAN PACIFIC ASSOCIATION FOR THE STUDY OF THE LIVER 2021.

Hotels and Unique Event Spaces

Hotels and event spaces are working in collaboration with the state to attract the corporate events and is working hard to provide the facilities required for the specific events.  Thailand boasts world renowned facilities and spaces with unlimited natural attractions. Top 5 cities that are being developed and upgraded with the help of state funded programs offer elegant 5-star hotels, business rich environment and prime locations to suit the needs of the visitors for nearby shopping and public transportation. 


Thailand has worked miracles in providing spacious column free halls and MICE venues in those 5 leading cities. Bangkok Convention Center, Chiang Mai International Convention and Exhibition Center, Impact Arena and Queen Sirikit National Convention Center are just a few names to mention. There are hundreds of arenas and places that can compete with any facility.

Food and Restaurants

Thailand draw a large number of visitors on the allure of its mouthwatering food alone. There is an abundance of Michelin star restaurants in Thailand. Thai food is world famous for its cooking style and edgy spicy taste. Once you are in Thailand you see food being sold almost everywhere. Authentic Thai food experience is what most visitors have in mind once they step foot in the country. 


The range of food is truly astonishing. There is an exquisite range of fine dining available in Thailand. From typical American feasts like stakes and burgers to sustainable food made by Michelin stared chefs, and from Thai Beef salad with noodles to Thai fish cake.  Convention and Expo centers have specialised caterers for the group dining as well that can be arranged as well.

Interesting Things to Do in Thailand

A country with such diverse culture has abundance of activities and adventures that can be done either in the same cities or in the neighbouring places. There are enchanting temples scattered around the country that has rich history and amazing architecture. 


There are shrines hidden between high rising buildings, BTS Sky train system and super malls where people can go to pay respect and some in search of love happiness, success, luck and even fertility. Thailand stayed number one for the three consecutive years as ‘the happiest country in Asia’ by Bloomberg.


Thailand is lined with some of the world’s most exquisite beaches. Either you are looking for a beach lined up with beautiful palm trees or one with breathtaking backdrop of rocks islands and turquoise water splashed across the scene, Thailand has it all. 


There are sailing adventures available near Phuket and Ko Phi Phi or sight seeing tours in all major cities.  You can also enjoy world famous Thai cuisine in various fine dining venues or simply visit food streets to enjoy the real taste of Thai street food. At the end visit to Thailand can not be completed without paying a visit to the Thai massage and spa places that give you peace of mind and tranquility.

Spa and Shops

If you are one of those people who get their dose of relaxation through pummelling and kneading from a relaxing Spa, then Thailand is your destination to be. Occupying the most beautiful seafront beaches at Hua Hin, Phuket and Krabi, those tranquil relaxation distributing places can take you to a whole new world. 


You name it and Thailand has that Spa treatment for you if its face and skin treatments like exfoliation, steam masks, peels and massages or body treatments, nail treatments or even proven medical treatments Thailand has everything to offer.


If you are out for shopping in Thailand then there is never a dull moment where you are. Textile, fabrics, handicrafts are the cream of the pic and are available from quirky little stalls to mega malls in every major MICE city. Known for its colourful market stalls, sophisticated boutiques and affordable shopping, Thailand is the perfect place to shop till you drop.