Meet the faces behind ICCA's famous First Time Attendee programme! ICCA places huge importance on giving First Time Attendees (FTAs) at the ICCA Congress a very warm welcome. Each year, just before the ICCA Congress begins, new attendees are invited to join a specialised session that aims to prepare them for success. Jam-packed full of helpful advice that is delivered from member to member, the programme has been delivered to over 3,000 delegates since it initially began and is designed with care to help them network, do business, learn, and maximise the benefits of attending their first ICCA Congress.

At the centre of the entire programme are the people we couldn’t do it without: our mentors, an amazing group of ICCA members and #ICCAFriends who are Congress veterans and want to help support and steer our newbies as they join the ICCA Family.

Meet Aigars Smiltans

ICCA Congresses is a unique platform where experts of the Meeting industry get together to exchange latest industry’ trends and developments.

My experience with Meetings & Events industry started in beginning of ‘90s, when I was a team member of Non-governmental Education organization and where I was in charge to plan and organize education seminars and conferences around Latvia. Second part of ‘90’s was dedicated to at the Marketing communication agency and supervising worldwide known accounts as SAS, NOKIA Mobile, MARS, P&G, Coco Cola.

I joined travel industry with swap of the centuries and started my journey at one of largest DMC in Baltic Sea region Via Hansa as Commercial & Procurement Director with main duties to contract hotels throughout Baltic States, Russia, Finland and Poland. It didn’t take long, as I was involved also into daily operation of FIT department and Guaranteed departures tour development. Time flies by and with change of companies, accepting new challenges, I agree to accepted call to join Latvia Tours Con-ex Group and led Change management, building-up Pan Baltic Network and develop new strategy for companies Incentive & Event departments. Since Latvia Tours Con-ex Group time my work was more connected to Meetings & Events industry world!

Since November of 2010 I have that privilege and honour to built-up and develop from scratch the new MEET RIGA brand. To take it through a different path of evolvement as many other Convention bureaus around the world and to establish MEET RIGA as the official Riga City convention bureau.

Sharing is caring! I’m not afraid to share my knowledges and expertise with younger generation, so they can break-through and join Meetings & Events industry’s circles!

Thank you to Aigars for becoming an FTA mentor at the 60th ICCA Congress in Cartagena, Colombia! Are you interested in helping our First Time Attendees to settle in? Find out more about the programme or email to find out how you can become a mentor.

Let’s get social by using the following hashtags: #ICCANewBee #ICCAMentorBee #LetsGetBuzzing #ICCA2021