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I posted on Wednesday about the return of NCL to UK home-porting, in the shape of Norwegian Jade which will be based in Southampton for summer 2017. I mentioned that she will do a program of cruises from 2 to 9 nights, and that the 2-nighter(s) will just be from Southampton to Hamburg and back. I missed something out regarding these short cruises – they are, apparently, aimed at the MICE market…..

I had never heard of this. Of course it couldn’t be anything to do with actual rodents – surely not – but then I remembered the old Monty Python sketch about The Mouse Problem. Perhaps they were onto something after all; and on board a ship you could throw in fun and games with the ship’s cat….

Obviously I was missing something. However a few minutes research revealed that the acronym stands for Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (or Events). It’s defined as “a type of tourism in which large groups, usually planned well in advance, are brought together for a particular purpose”; I suppose a cruise ship would do very well as the venue for such a gathering. Here’s a link to a Wikipedia page about it.

It’s nowhere near as exciting (or exotic) as I’d thought, and made even less so by the fact that the relevant industry is trying drop the acronym altogether. In fact, I’m not sure that I don’t prefer Monty Python’s answer.

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