MICE Tourism Shines in Guanajuato, Mexico

A year ago, Guanajuato held the 19th edition of the International Tourism Congress on its soil. The theme of that congress was: “Tourism, a driver of global development.” Today, Guanajuato is proud to have six cities available for business tourism.

The state is positioned in fifth place nationally in meeting tourism. The city of Guanajuato is a crucial destination worldwide. It is one of the state’s World Heritage Cities, and it is both a university and historic.


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“Guanajuato is a cultural destination that is currently committed to MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences & exhibitions) tourism. The capacity and tourism infrastructure of cities such as León, Guanajuato, San Miguel de Allende, Irapuato, Celaya, and Silao allows attendees to enjoy the destination and attend a convention, congress, or exhibition,” said Guanajuato’s Secretary of Tourism, Juan José álvarez Brunel, in an exclusive interview with TravelPulse.

Ramón Godínez Ortiz, president of the Mexican Association of Psychotherapy and Thanatology (Ampytac), said that in the year 2000 “we started this congress to have a constant preparation and share ideas according to the present time. Today, very few academic congresses take place in the world with this vision and related to tourism activity, and Guanajuato has welcomed us very well.”

Focusing Efforts

“Tourism is one of the economic activities that generate better conditions of welfare and development, create jobs, distribute economic revenue, and favor the protection of cultural and natural heritage,” added a Guanajuato state official.

For this reason, through the Ministry of Tourism, the state government has the challenge of strengthening emerging measures, improving operational capabilities, and focusing efforts to offer better services to attendees.

Together, the six cities of Guanajuato manage to attract national and international events in the more than 83,000 square meters of exhibition floor in Guanajuato’s various venues.

Guanajuato State is positioned in fifth place nationally in meeting tourism.

Data from the Guanajuato Tourism Observatory from September 2020 to January 2021 indicate that 3 million people visited the city of Leon, resulting in an economic revenue of 425,000 (8.5 million pesos) and a hotel occupancy rate of 20 percent.

Statistics show that more than 710,000 tourists arrived at hotels during this period, which resulted in 496,000 rooms being occupied. Visitors stayed an average of 1.2 days. The Observatory also points out that these were the main activities they carried out:

—Leisure/Recreation: 37 percent

—Shopping: 20 percent

—Business/Work: 19 percent

—Cultural/Religious activities: 13 percent

—MICE: 8 percent

—Gastronomic: 1 percent

—Wellness: 1 percent

—Romance: 1 percent

The demographic profile of the tourists indicates that of the total number of visitors, 57 percent were men of 39 years, and 43 percent were women of the same age. It also shows that 58 percent were from the same state, 40 percent were national, and 2 percent were international. Forty-one percent were tourists, and 51 percent were excursionists.

At the state level, these are the main cities of origin:

—Silao: 22 percent

—Irapuato: 20 percent

—Guanajuato: 18 percent

—Celaya: 11 percent

Serán 107 eventos en León en 2022, lo que pone a León en el mapa mundial, seguimos siendo punta de lanza en eventos a nivel nacional y Latinoamérica.
León is no longer just the city of leather and footwear but also the host of important events.

León, a Development Pole

álvarez Brunel pointed out that León has the ideal infrastructure for conventions, exhibitions, and business tourism. “León is no longer just the city of leather and footwear but also the host of important events, services, and business tourism. We want to welcome visitors from Mexico and the world with open arms,” said Guanjuato’s Secretary of Tourism.

The main reasons for visiting the city are shopping tourism at 29 percent and business/work tourism with 27 percent.

Meeting tourism in León exceeded expectations in 2021. The city had an economic spillover of US$5.8 million (116.5 million pesos) when the projection through the first quarter of that year was US$3.75 million (75 million pesos).

The city hosted 75 congresses and business events last year, of which 30 were held in the previous four months. In addition, 15 events were supported by the municipality; nine were captive, and six were itinerant, with 28,306 people attending in person.

Guanajuato is one of the best tourist destinations, with 45 percent of tourism from neighboring states.

Expectations for 2023 are favorable. León already has five confirmed events: the National Meeting of Clinical Chemists; the National Congress of Clinical Nutrition and Nutritional Therapy; the Mexican Congress of Orthopedics and Traumatology; and Perio Master Clinic (periodontics), a world event that was postponed to 2022 due to sanitary conditions stemming from COVID-19.

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