15.6.2017

Finland is Nordic number one in congresses

Finland hosted more congresses last year than any other Nordic country. Congresses form a considerable source of revenue for the travel industry.

The Union of International Associations’ yearly report declares that Finland hosted the most international congresses among the Nordic countries in 2016. Finland hosted 651 international congresses for various organisations, with a total of 101,514 attendees.

The number of congresses varies greatly year to year. Last year saw many major congresses that are not organised every year while the overall number of congresses was also high.

“We have worked hard to make Finland an attractive venue for congresses, and it shows in the statistics”, Mervi Toivonen from Finpro’s Finland Convention Bureau explains.

Solid Finnish know-how

The main reasons to organise congresses in Finland include safety, stability and strong infrastructure. When deciding on a region, one key element is accessibility.

Around 70% of the congresses were held in Helsinki, but organisers are starting to show interest for other locations as well as capital cities. The second city for congresses was Tampere, but Turku, Espoo, Jyväskylä and Oulu also hosted a number of large international congresses.

Finland has a strong international reputation when it comes to organising conventions and congresses.

“We have a committed, professional workforce with training and experience in events along with a network of volunteers. We have a genuine interest in producing welcoming, high-quality events for all. Finland is simply a joy to visit”, M.sc Tarja Kohila summarises. She has worked actively over the years to bring international congresses to Finland and has encouraged other scientists to hold their events in Finland as well.

Investment in congresses would benefit tourism in Finland

Finland has the potential to become an even more attractive destination for congresses and business events, but domestic investments have been conservative so far. One limitation for major congresses in Finland is our insufficient accommodation capacity.

“We welcome all new hotel projects with open arms. At the moment, we can organise a congress for 8,000 attendees, but that’s our limit”, Toivonen states.

Finnish university cities have their own Convention Bureaus that work tirelessly to bring large congresses to Finland. However, their staff is limited, and to make matters worse, universities have been forced to downsize their human resources, hindering their ability to compete for events.

The average congress visitor is likely to spend up to five times more on their trip than a typical tourist would. Additionally, many visitors would consider coming back for a holiday after a congress.

“We could grow our congress industry even more through investments, as our robust science communities and dependable organisers form a solid platform. The great thing is, the demand is there”, Toivonen encourages.

 

For more information, contact:

Mervi Toivonen, Manager, Global Sales and Business Events, Finpro, Visit Finland, Finland Convention Bureau, +358 50 554 5050, mervi.toivonen@finpro.fi

News

23.5.2018

Espoo to serve international conference delegates only local produced vegetarian food and fish

Visit Espoo oversees the arrangements of Espoo city receptions and hospitality for international association conferences. From 2018 onwards, as the first Convention Bureau in Finland, Visit Espoo has made a commitment to only serve vegetarian food accompanied with fish that is sustainably fished from the Baltic Sea and surrounding lakes. This commitment is part of the Finnish Society’s Commitment to Sustainable Development (sitoumus2050.fi).
“This is a great step for Visit Espoo to support the city’s sustainable development goals and the same time continue our own sustainability work towards more sustainable meetings in Espoo. Together with our pledge to leave red meat out of city reception menus, we are also aiming to reduce food waste by requiring pre-registrations for the occasions” says Miikka Valo, Convention Manager for Visit Espoo.
Read More

Read more
12.4.2018

Experience Finland and White Night Magic at IMEX!

Find out about Finland’s high class services in stunning natural surroundings at our stand F260

Read more

Read more
8.3.2018

Another record year for congresses in Finland

2017 saw more congresses organised in Finland than ever before. Last year totalled 791 congresses for international organisations with a record-breaking 111,188 guests, an increase of 22% from the previous year.

Most of the congresses were held in the Helsinki region. For 2017, the number of congresses in Helsinki increased by 28% and by 54% in Espoo. Tampere, Turku and Jyväskylä maintained their ranking among the top five cities to host congresses in terms of guests. Jyväskylä and Kuopio also showed a positive trend by hosting more congresses and guests than in previous years.

“This is the second year in a row that we’ve seen substantial growth for both the number of congresses and guests. The processes involved can be lengthy and international competition is fierce. Therefore these results are definitely a sign of long-term success with procurement”, says Mervi Toivonen from Business Finland’s Finland Convention Bureau.

Read More

Read more
27.2.2018

Messukeskus Helsinki started the hotel renovation – the objective is the best event hotel in Northern Europe

Messukeskus Helsinki, Expo and Convention Centre, will renovate its Holiday Inn hotel’s rooms and service concept in a year long project. The new concept will bring the fair program to be a part of the hotel guest’s service experience and will also revolutionize the restaurant world of the Messukeskus.

The hotel renovation that is starting now will cover the entire building, from hotel rooms to service points and from technology to interior design. At the same time the service concept will be tailor-made to meet the needs of clients participating in the Messukeskus events.

“1.2 million different kinds of visitors visit the Messukeskus every year; there is something happening in the halls and meeting rooms all the time. Our milieu is unique. In addition to business travellers, our revamped hotel will provide unique service particularly to families with children,” says Anni Vepsäläinen, Managing Director of the Messukeskus.

Read More

Read more
More News