NEW YORK, Nov. 30, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Experienced meeting and event planners know that one of the most important keys to success is an intense focus on the details. A poll of professional meeting planners on what they consider the most essential factors and potential pitfalls in meeting and event planning are highlighted in Meetings & Events: Small Stuff That You Need to Sweat, which appears on ViewFrom36k, an online resource dedicated to business travel advice and insights from top industry experts.
"There are endless details to pay attention to when planning a meeting or event," said Gabe Rizzi, President of Travel Leaders Corporate, a division of Travel Leaders Group, the organization behind ViewFrom36k. "It can be tempting to focus less on some versus others, especially when you're in a time crunch, but certain mistakes can cost a bundle."
Here's what meeting and event planning experts say are some of the most important items to pay attention to:
Sleeping Rooms: Keep Tabs on Anticipated Utilization
Closely monitor the number of sleeping rooms your group is expecting to use versus the number of rooms you initially guaranteed to make sure you don't pay for rooms you don't need. If you're using a professional travel management company (TMC), they can typically get resort fees reduced or waived and Wi-Fi included in the room rate you negotiate. Also, ask your property for a mix of king and two double-bed rooms at identical rates for use during your meeting as well as a number of rooms for three nights pre- and post-event at the same rate.
Food & Beverage: Meet Your Minimums
Before committing to a minimum spend on food and beverage (F&B) at the hotel, carefully and accurately determine your needs. If you miss the mark, you'll pay the hotel for any unused F&B. Try to limit your exposure by negotiating any potential shortfall payment at the actual cost versus retail price of food and beverage at the property. Also, nobody likes surprises when it comes to paying a bill—so make sure taxes and fees are included in your F&B cost agreement.
Meeting Space and Audio-Visual Fees: Be Specific About What You Need and Look for Savings
Make sure the specific details of your meeting space needs, including desired set-up and tear-down times, are in your contract. Ask for a 24-hour hold on rooms if you have them for more than one day. Also, typically, audio-visual equipment is an add-on. Check to find to out what preferred vendors the hotel or venue works with and ask how to obtain the lowest costs. Also, find out if it is permissible for you to bring items in such as power strips and projectors.
Transportation: Consider the Size of Your Group and How Quickly You Need to Move Them
If you need to move people around, transportation and what it will cost is an important consideration. Depending on your group size, some smaller hotels may offer a complimentary shuttle van but, if you're sharing it with the rest of the hotel, this may not be a reliable option. For larger groups, if people need to be moved rapidly, multiple vehicles may be needed to achieve the timing requirements. These are costs that can add up and need to be carefully negotiated with transportation providers.
ViewFrom36k is a thought-leading digital content hub developed by Travel Leaders Group that gives a comprehensive big-picture view of business travel, along with the solutions needed to lower costs, increase traveler satisfaction and drive revenue growth.
Travel Leaders Corporate is a wholly-owned division of Travel Leaders Group, specializing in business travel fulfillment, strategic meetings management and data analytics.
For more information or to take advantage of Travel Leaders Corporate's personalized service and cutting-edge corporate business travel solutions that provide a complete travel enrichment experience, email [email protected] or call 877-404-4173.
About ViewFrom36k ViewFrom36k is a thought-leading digital content hub that gives a comprehensive big-picture view of business travel, along with the solutions needed to lower costs, increase traveler satisfaction and drive revenue growth.
About Travel Leaders Group Travel Leaders Group (www.TravelLeadersGroup.com) is transforming travel with a commitment to our vacation and business travel clients through our progressive approach toward each unique travel experience. Having already assisted millions of travelers, Travel Leaders Group manages leisure, business and franchise travel operations under a variety of diversified divisions and brands. With over 7,000 agency locations, Travel Leaders Group ranks as one of the industry's largest travel agency companies. Travelers also have access to The Travel Collection by Travel Leaders Group, a portfolio of select travel offers including discounts on international and domestic flights, value-added benefits at lodging establishments, shipboard credits on cruises and savings on escorted and vacation packages. Membership to The Travel Collection is offered at no additional cost to U.S. American Express Gold Card, Business Gold Rewards Card, Platinum Card® and Business Platinum Card® Members. For more information visit www.TheTravelCollection.com.