Association Insights



Sep 11 2017

Content provided by Québec City Business Destination

Today’s global marketplace, economic trends and worldwide expansion of many businesses are driving the need for more conventions, tradeshows and corporate meetings.Unfortunately, the international political and social scene as well as unpredictable climatic/natural events can have a huge, and potentially disastrous, impact on business travelers.

Here are 5 recommendations to ensuring your event is a success and that attendees remain safe.

1. Carefully research destinations

While no one can guarantee that a destination is 100% safe and secure, you can nevertheless opt for a host city that is located in a politically and socially stable area of the world, has low crime rates, and is open to welcoming different cultures and religions. And don’t forget to check regularly travel advisories.

2. Get the lowdown on your host city

Talk to local representatives to determine what travelers should look out for when visiting the city. What areas are traveler-friendly? Which neighborhoods should be avoided? Do the representatives have any tips on local crime (pickpocketing, car theft, etc.) tactics so that you can inform delegates? Is the city safe to walk through at night? Pick a venue that is located in a safe neighborhood where attendees will be able to walk everywhere. A venue in the heart of a city is more often than not a great option for delegates to safely explore the downtown core.

3. Put together a preparedness plan

It’s better to be prudent than sorry. Develop a plan that details the safety procedures your team and delegates must follow in case of an emergency. Even if your event is taking place in a relatively safe part of the world, it is nevertheless wise to have the steps everyone needs to follow to remain safe and healthy. In addition, factor in a Plan B or C in case an urgent situation or crisis occurs. Work with your host city’s event resources to gather information on the safety measures of your venues, off-site activities and hotel. Find out what type of medical services are readily available and accessible.

4. Provide attendees with a safety kit

An event safety kit is a written guide, much like the event program, that gives tips and tricks to delegates on safety procedures as well as guidelines when visiting the city. Give attendees a list of safe and unsafe areas of the host city. Provide maps, recommendations on attractions and tourism itineraries so that if event goers have some personal time, they’ll never get caught in a sticky situation. Furthermore, list useful telephone numbers, ideally on a document that can fit in a wallet or purse, that attendees can call if they become ill, have an accident, or are in danger.

5. Consider online/mobile solutions to improve event safety

While your event website, social media networks, and mobile app may have originally been designed for promotion, standard information, networking and community conversations, don’t underestimate their power to increase delegates’ safety. They can be fast and practical should you need to send out mass notifications, real-time updates, and streamline coordination with your team. Some social media networks, such as Facebook, can even be set up so that people can tag themselves as “Safe” should something untoward arise.

While the last thing you want to do is put a damper on the excitement your team, local partners and delegates have for an upcoming event, precautions should be taken so that your convention, tradeshow or meeting does not become a cautionary tale for others. As the Scouts motto says : “Always be prepared!”

Visit Québec City Business Destination’s blog to read more interesting topics on our industry.