SITE Global Conference 2024

Theresa and Heather at SITE Global Conference 2024 in Istanbul

Article published 28/03/2024

In February (26 - 29) our Business Development Manager - UK, Theresa Steven and Corporate & Incentive Assistant Manager, Heather McNee attended the SITE Global Conference in Istanbul, Turkey.

We caught up with Heather who has recently been appointed Co-Communications Director of SITE's Scotland Chapter to discuss her time at the conference and her key takeaways.

About SITE

Founded in 1973, SITE (Society for Incentive Travel Excellence) is a professional association which represents more than 2,500 members located in 90 countries across the destination supply chain and travel sector. SITE offers networking opportunities, online resources, education, certification, and advocacy to its members. It also provides support to young professionals through its Young Leaders programme and holds an annual conference.

Invaluable insights

The SITE Global Conference was a melting pot of ideas, inspiration, and collaborations. One of my highlights was the opportunity to engage with Chapter Leaders from around the world during Function Chats. These sessions provided invaluable insights into the challenges and innovations shaping the MICE industry globally, from SITE Australia to SITE Africa. As someone deeply involved in communications, connecting with these leaders offered a platform to share best practice and foster collaboration with like-minded individuals, laying the groundwork for future partnerships.

During the conference, Theresa and I had the opportunity to present to Chapter leaders about effective collaboration within SITE Scotland's chapter and why we are proud of the Scottish industry.

Changing demographics

Throughout the conference, discussions centered on the evolving landscape of incentive travel, with a keen focus on changing demographics, AI integration, and sustainability. The Incentive Travel Index provided valuable data for understanding industry trends and planning future initiatives. It became evident that second-tier destinations closer to home are gaining popularity, reflecting a shift towards more intimate and experiential event experiences.

The concept of business events as transformational experiences emerged as a dominant theme, with attendees expressing a growing interest in immersive activities that captivate and engage participants. From recreating historical moments to fostering deeper connections, the emphasis was on creating meaningful interactions that leave a lasting impact.

Sustainability and AI

Speakers from leading companies such as Hilton and Delta underscored the growing commitment to sustainability and climate justice within the industry. The adoption of the Triple Bottom Line framework, prioritising profit, people, and planet, reflects a broader shift towards responsible business practices. Simple changes, like packing lighter when flying, were highlighted as collective efforts that can contribute to a more sustainable future.

AI was also a key focus, which is poised to revolutionise the industry in the next two years. The ability of AI to detect attendee moods during events represents just one facet of its potential, hinting at a future where technology seamlessly complements human creativity and intuition. Whilst AI is a powerful tool for streamlining logistics and enhancing experiences, it is unable to replace human interaction.

To find out more about SITE Scotland visit -