Event Industry in 2021: What’s About to Happen?
The most devastating pandemic in over a century, COVID-19, is changing the way wanderers travel. From exclusive destinations to rigorous protocols, the event industry is doing whatever it can to remain afloat.
Event planners turn to incentivized travel and innovative solutions to recuperate from significant losses and ensure that consumers can continue to journey while minimizing the risk of spread. If you’re looking to host your next corporate event, consider the following sector trends that are likely to remain in 2021.
Trend 1 - Keeping it Close to Home
Once a bonus for corporate groups, exotic locations won’t be on anyone’s roster anytime soon. As people grow reluctant to travel greater distances, corporate decision-makers are prioritizing local and regional destinations.
Consider hosting your event outdoors to keep from confining larger groups of people in an enclosed space. Enjoy a stunning view of Alaskan glaciers or wade in the turquoise waters of Bermuda if you’re New England-based.
Trend 2 - Incentivizing Individual Travel
Especially nowadays, employee morale is shot. However, a select few will go out of their way to demonstrate excellent leadership skills in times of crisis—ones that shouldn’t go unrewarded. Offer incentive trips for outstanding employees on an individual basis to inspire consistent performance. Reward their hard work with solo or partnered travel.
Trend 3 - Book Private Destinations
If you’re traveling for business purposes, book a private destination that limits headcounts to a safe number. For lovers of lush, Caribbean islands make for a luxurious and alluring endpoint.
Trend 4 - Consider Revised Seating and Capacity
If you’re planning to set an event indoors, space your attendees at least one seat away from each other to cater to social distancing measures. Organize tables six feet apart.
Ideally, you won’t want to indulge in crammed gatherings at all—if possible, host smaller group gatherings over a week to limit interaction.
Trend 5 - Host a Hybrid Event
As live meetings and events resume, consider a cross between in-person and virtual attendance to limit the number of attendees. Respect personal boundaries by allowing more volatile staff to prioritize their well-being instead of physically attending conferences.
Trend 6 - Host Events Outdoors
Outdoor spaces such as terraces, gardens, or outdoor theaters can cater to larger groups of people while enforcing social distancing measures. Consider placing markers on the ground to remind attendees of safety precautions.
Outdoor gatherings don’t have to be limited to 30-minute intervals either—but keep in mind not to stretch time when it isn’t necessary.
Trend 7 - Reinforce Sanitation Procedures
Prioritize both comfort and safety by practicing visible sanitation procedures. Before, during, and after your event, disinfect all surfaces and high-touch areas such as microphones, doorknobs, handles, and elevator buttons.
Discourage handshakes or any form of physical contact. Do without the buffet table and offer pre-packaged meals and individual, disposable cutlery.
Trend 8 - Enforce Pre-Entry Testing
Though widespread COVID-19 testing isn’t yet available, it’s reasonable to expect the rollout of a quick-test kit in 2021. If so, test each employee beforehand and include temperature checks to keep transmission risk to a minimum.
When hosting an event, create atmospheres that highlight safety and caution. Over anything, focus on your team’s well-being by allowing them to skip out on physical attendance and telecommunicate instead.
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