Conferences may save sluggish tourism market

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More conferences than ever before were arranged in Norway last year, and those attending are now viewed as saviours for the tourism industry. With visitor numbers down because of financial problems abroad, hotel owners are among those keen to attract professionals gathering for a combination of business and fun.

One local official told newspaper Aftenposten that the conference attendees are “the most affluent guests we can have.” They spend an average of NOK 3,500 per day (USD 580) among those attending gatherings in Oslo. Other Norwegian cities are keen for their business as well.

Norway, despite its reputation for high prices, attracted 187 international conferences last year, with Oslo hosting 86 of them. Bergen, Trondheim, Tromsø and Stavanger were the next biggest hosts for the gatherings that generated estimated total revenues of NOK 1.2 billion.

Norway now ranks 17th on a listing from UIA International Meetings Statistics that ranks cities around the world with the most conferences. Singapore topped the list, followed by the US, France and Japan.

Views and News staff