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Seoul MICE Card to Provide Business Visitors with a Smart Shopping Experience

August 9, 2014 MICE No Comments Email Email

Anew smart card is being developed for business event attendees in Seoul which will offer international visitors discounts on public transportation and other purchases.

Similar to T-money, the Korean version of the magnetic stored-value card, the new “Seoul MICE Card” will be exclusive to business visitors attending large-scale congresses and events in Korea’s capital.

Currently in the trial phase, the cards will be issued to attendees of two upcoming congresses –expected to bring a total of 6,500 participants to the city. The first event, the 2014 International Congress of Mathematicians, will be held from August 13-21, followed by the 32nd World Congress of Internal Medicine, taking place from October 25-29. Usage statistics will be monitored during both events by the Korea Smart Card Co., with the findings expected in 2015.

Upon arrival in Seoul, each card will be issued to event participants as part of the Seoul Welcome Kit, a regular promotional item provided by the Seoul Convention Bureau for such events, and which also includes a Business Travelers Guide, postcards, coupon book and an LED screen cleaning cloth, packaged together in a traditional Korean-style pouch. Each card will bear an attractive design along with the logo of the event and that of the Seoul Metropolitan Government. Attendees will also receive guides on Seoul’s public transportation services and other businesses accepting the card.

Normally priced at W8,000 (US$7.80) and with a stored value of W5,000 (US$4.80), the cards will be issued completely free to event participants courtesy of Seoul and can be used anywhere T-money is accepted, including public transport, convenience stores, some royal palaces, amusement parks, and other locations displaying the T-money logo. Discounts vary according to the type of service, with Seoul subway passengers for example being eligible for 10% off the normal price for card-holders. In addition, anyone attending the two congresses mentioned with a Seoul MICE Card will be able to ride the Gangnam City Tour Bus for W5,000, down from the usual W12,000.

The new card comes in response to research conducted by the Seoul Metropolitan Government in 2011 on the spending habits of business visitors. Its findings showed that shopping was the most common expenditure after accommodation and event registration fees, with the average visitor spending W390, 000 (US$377.93) on the activity during their stay. The findings also indicated 52.8% of business visitors spent their free time shopping as compared with nature trips (44.4%) and visits to cultural or historical sites (40.6%).

The Seoul MICE Card forms part of the Seoul Metropolitan Government’s meetings “Master Plan”, aimed at expanding andupgrading the city’s business events services and infrastructure in response to increasing demand for Seoul as a destination for meetings, exhibitions, and incentive trips.

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