Destination Event Planning: Tips for Organising in Unique Locations
We think we can speak for everyone when we say that a common goal that we all share is to travel. To see a sunset from a beach outside of one’s own city can only be defined as a far-fetched dream that might even seem impossible to come true. It is because of this fantastical aspect that destination events create opportunities for the expansion of one’s horizons and make it possible for access to an unforgettable experience. These types of events are unique in that they allow for memories to be created as well as require way more admin, than a normal at-home event, to be executed successfully. This blog post aims to define and list what exactly these administrative tasks are that are required to plan and organise a successful destination event.
Task 1: Define the goal and budget of your Destination Event.
Two crucial aspects to define when planning your destination event is its (1) goal and (2) budget. When these factors are determined, the planning stage of your destination event is allowed to follow a guideline or structure. The goal of your event can be defined by the type of event that you are planning to host. Common destination events include:
The goal of a meeting is to usually bring together individuals of the same industry to discuss certain topics pertaining to the growth of their business.
The exchange of knowledge pertaining to a certain industry amongst individuals belonging to the same career field is what the goal of a conference is defined as.
- Milestone Event
The goal of a milestone event is to celebrate major goals accomplished or milestones reached by your company. That could be it’s release of a new product, birthday/anniversary, or the check of a major goal from your company’s to-do list.
The budget of your destination event greatly effects the degree to which your attendees will enjoy the event in its entirety. Your budget defines majority of aspects to what your attendees have access to such as:
- Event activities
- Local experiences, etc.
Task 2: Choose the glorious Location.
The location of your event is the key to what makes your destination event memorable. Ensure that the location that is chosen compliments the type of event that you are planning to host, its’ goal and your set budget. The location should also allow for unforgettable experiences and access to enjoyable activities. When choosing your event, research on what accommodation is most in line with what you have set your event out to achieve while also being affordable for both you and your attendees.
Task 3: Collaborate Locally!
A good hack to expanding your professional circle and providing your attendees with culturally rich information of the environment they find themselves in, is to collaborate with the local businesses of your location. This enriches the experience of your event as well as that of your attendees.
Task 4: Iron out the Logistics of the stay.
The success of your event is only as good as it is planned. That means seeing to the small yet extremely important details of the event. These details include defining the:
- Schedule times,
- Event activities,
- Caterers, or lack thereof, etc.
While seeing to these small details could be deemed as annoying and maybe even tedious, it is these exact details which allow your attendees to enjoy your event and their stay from start to finish.
Task 5: Communicate all important information with your attendees!
We all relate to the frustration that comes with being left in the dark. The success of a destination event is reliant on how well it is communicated. Keep your guests in on the loop of the development of your event by communicating the following well in advance to it taking place:
- The chosen destination,
- The different options on how to travel to said location,
- Recommendations and discounts on the available accommodations,
- What experiences the location has to offer,
- The agenda and scheduling times of your main event(s), etc.
Not only will communicating this vital information prevent your attendees feeling lost and confused but it will also allow them to thoroughly enjoy your event as they will be allowed to plan their stay.
Task 6: Schedule in unforgettable experiences.
While we understand that your destination event is centred around a possible corporate goal, avoid limiting your attendees to only experiencing what your event has to offer. Explore the different experiences offered by the environment you find your event surrounded by. Plan team-building exercises, networking events, and optional trips and excursions that highlight the local way of life, cuisine, and landmarks. This enriches the experience of your attendees and leaves a memory that lingers for years to come.
Task 7: Ensure that all activities and your event itself is culturally sensitive.
While your chosen destination might offer you, your attendees, and your event a culturally rich experience, it is extremely important to do research on the cultural norms of your events location. This ensures that you, your attendees, and event are not culturally insensitive and respect the local traditions and practices.
Task 8: Evaluation and Post-Event Communication.
Post-event communication provides the answer to the question of whether your event was a success. Follow through with an evaluation of your event by providing your guests with follow-up surveys asking them about their experience. The more your attendees enjoy your event, the more likely your event can be coined as a success.
A destination event is no small task to take on. It is an event which requires much preparation and accurate attention to detail. It is because of this merciless planning and large amount of effort that a destination event is one that truly allows for dreams to become reality and leave your attendees fondly leading conversations with the golden words, “Remember when…”.
Good luck with your destination event planning!