The World Credit Union Conference (WOCCU), organised by the World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU), is the premier global event for the credit union industry where membership growth, technology, advocacy and the future of financial services are discussed. After winning the bid to make Belfast the host city for WOCCU 2016, Visit Belfast were determined to reflect WOCCU’s ethos by focusing on providing a world-class business tourism experience through excellent customer care.
A smooth collaboration between Visit Belfast and its trade partners such as Belfast Waterfront and Titanic Belfast ensured the successful delivery of WOCCU in Belfast. Travelling to Ottawa in 2015 Visit Belfast were able to gain a better understanding of the conference and how it could logistically translate into the Belfast venue.
In 2016, 1,800 delegates from 55 countries congregated in the Belfast Waterfront for WOCCU bringing an economic benefit of £2.7m to the city. The conference required extensive exhibition and catering space, state-of-the-art facilities and several breakout rooms for specialised sessions. The Belfast Waterfront more than measured up in this regard, proving itself the perfect venue for a large-scale conference. Many delegates were impressed by its modern architecture and spectacular riverside setting.
Throughout the four-day programme, the delegates experienced the best of Northern Ireland. There was a guided sightseeing tour of all four corners of Belfast, taking in the capital city’s historic landmarks and the outstanding natural beauty of the Mourne Mountains. They also visited one of Northern Ireland’s greatest natural wonders, the Giant’s Causeway. Numerous Game of Thrones® film locations in renowned beauty spots were explored, and a spectacular closing party in Belfast’s flagship visitor attraction, Titanic Belfast, and the new Titanic Exhibition Centre was the perfect end to an impressive experience.
By providing their clientele with local knowledge and creativity, Visit Belfast achieved a programme that exceeded the expectations of their guests. Moving away from the mainstream locations to go off the beaten track and collaborating with local communities meant that delegates saw a whole new side of Belfast.
Feedback from the client was extremely positive. “When choosing an international conference destination for our attendees, we look for cities with the right balance of tourist attractions and convenience, Belfast had that and more. The element that really puts Belfast over the top as a conference destination though is the people. Our thanks must also go to the Visit Belfast team for a wonderful experience” said Christi Bergen, WOCCU Corporate and International Meetings Manager.