Accommodation and MICE sector to benefit from new Covid-19 tourism programs – Clayton Bartolo

Tourism Minister Clayton Bartolo further announced two new programs to support the hospitality sector as well as the meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) sector.

During a press conference on Friday, Bartolo said the first program aims to support the accommodation sector. These include guest houses, boutique hotels, 2-star hotels, hostels and vacation rentals (self-catering apartments – villas and farmhouses).

“A budget of 1.5 million euros has been allocated to this device, he said.”

The second program Bartolo announced today is dedicated to MICE – the sector that includes conferences, meetings, incentives and exhibitions. “A budget of 4 million euros will be allocated to this sector.”

Bartolo went into more detail about what the two new diets entail.

He clarified that with regard to the first scheme, aimed at supporting accommodation, “guest houses and boutique hotels will receive a total of €1,000 per establishment to spend on marketing”.

“2-star hotels will also receive a total amount of €500 per establishment to support them in their marketing strategy, while holiday rentals and approved hostels will receive €250 for each property. This will help them develop their marketing with the aim attract tourists to the island,” Bartolo said.

He explained that eligible candidates can apply through the MTA. Applicants will be asked to submit documents that will serve as proof that the donated money will be spent.

“We aim to help establishments strengthen their marketing strategy, even from a digital aspect.”

Moving on to the second program dedicated to the MICE sector, Bartolo explained that those who organize organized activities in Malta can also benefit from it through an application.

“Applications submitted will be on a first-come, first-served basis and will accept activities that will take place this year as well as in 2022. In addition, applicants will be asked to submit signed contracts, confirming that the activity will be held in Malta or Gozo. The start date of the contract must be dated today,” he said.

Bartolo also explained that if local spending is less than €600-€800 per person, an incentive of €75 will be given to each person. On the other hand, if the local expense exceeds €800, the bonus for each delegate will be €150.

He added that there must also be a minimum number of 10 conference participants, who must spend at least two nights in Malta. The contribution will be paid after the activity has taken place in Malta.

More details about this program will be announced on a technical website hosted by MTA.

Throughout the week, Minister Bartolo announced further incentives for the hospitality industry. These include the new scheme which offers financial assistance to tourists who book summer holidays in Malta directly through local hotels, as well as five new air routes which will start operating in Malta in conjunction with Ryanair this summer.

Malta Tourism Authority (MTA) Chairman Gavin Gulia, who was also present at the press conference, said the Covid-19 pandemic was affecting all sectors in Malta, and the tourism sector was no exception. for he was affected in all his niches.

“The MTA will help self-catering, tourist villages, guesthouses, hostels, 2-star hotels as well as the conference industry,” Gulia said.

Tourism Minister Bartolo said it was gratifying that the first two schemes announced last week – free individual travelers and tour operators – had generated great interest and discussion both locally and internationally.

“As many as 75% of hotels eligible for free individual traveler have contacted the MTA regarding this program. This shows it will be a success,” he said.

Bartolo explained that hotels will receive more information on this program in the coming days, while a number of webinars will be organized by the MTA to provide the necessary information.

About Michael B. Billingsley

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