The GIZ Improved Competitiveness of National Enterprises (ICONE) project recently organised a study tour that brought together Cambodian tour operators and their Mongolian counterparts.
Held from the 8th to the 12th of May, 2023, this study tour sought to foster knowledge exchange, cultivate unique offerings, and forge stronger ties between enterprises operating within the tourism industry of both nations.
On the 8th of May, the Ministry of Environment and Tourism in Mongolia warmly greeted the Cambodian delegation, emphasising the significance of Southeast Asia, particularly Cambodia, as an alluring destination for Mongolian tourists. Underlining the importance of adventure tourism’s product development, the Ministry highlighted the shared objective of offering unparalleled experiences and capturing customers’ attention from new markets.
On the 9th of May, 20 Mongolian and 14 Cambodian tour operators participated in a workshop to immerse themselves in an immersive cultural exchange. The event aimed to familiarize attendees with the distinctive selling points of each destination while fostering meaningful business connections. The Mongolian Tourism Association aptly introduced Mongolia’s rich touristic offerings, emphasizing the imperative for collaboration in delivering exceptional and high-quality products that cater to customer needs.
Mr Nikolas Hatz, citing the comprehensive Tourism Customer Insights Study published in November 2022, shed light on Cambodia’s exceptional tourism offerings in various domains such as history, culture, adventure, wellness, gastronomy, and islands and beaches. Recognising the importance of differentiation in a competitive landscape, Hatz underscored the necessity of innovative, customer-centric products to establish fruitful collaborations with industry peers.
Moreover, VIVE, a pioneering enterprise in the digital realm, showcased an exemplary and technologically advanced touristic product during the study tour. Guiding participants through an immersive virtual tour of Mongolia using state-of-the-art VR glasses, VIVE sparked a discussion on the prospects of digitalising touristic experiences. This discourse delved into exploring innovative avenues to leverage technology and enhance the visitor experience.
The study tour also facilitated meaningful business matching events, where Cambodian tour operators had the opportunity to establish collaborative relationships with their Mongolian counterparts, fostering mutually beneficial alliances in both inbound and outbound tourism. These interactions with members of the Mongolian Tourism Association enabled tour operators to explore avenues for joint ventures and cooperation.
The 14 Cambodian tour operators held their internal discussion on the 16th of May after arriving safely back to Cambodia. The meeting served as reflection of the study trip as well as offering mongolian tour operators touristic routes and packages as one entity, rather than an individual to demonstrate the tight collaboration of the Cambodian tourism service providers. Each company has their own unique selling points ranging from local tourism to prestige vintage jeep tours.
Overall, the study tour organised by ICONE showcases the commitment of both Cambodia and Mongolia to leverage their respective strengths to attract tomorrow’s travellers. By exchanging knowledge, cultivating unique offerings, and establishing meaningful partnerships, these tour operators aim to unlock the full potential of their tourism industries through innovation.