Part 4 – Considerations When Selecting a Venue for Your Next Conference

Ok, so we are getting there! However, I still have a few more pearls of wisdom to impart before you settle on a conference venue. This week we look at…

Does the Venue Have the Technical Infrastructure to Host the Event and Can our Delegates Access Wi-Fi on the Conferencing Floor and in Their Accommodation Rooms?

Of high importance these days is the need for a conference venue to be able to cater to the Audio Visual requirements of your event, the individual speakers and the delegates.

Most major hotels and function centres will be fully equipped and ready to handle any technical requirements you have, however, it may be worth getting a preliminary quote from the in-house AV contractor before you sign off on your venue contract.

In most instances using the in-house AV contractor is by far the easiest and cheapest option, however, in some cases, these quotes can be exorbitant, and should you then choose to use an external AV company, you may be looking at hefty fees from the venue to oversee the works performed by the assigned company.

For those venues that do not offer extensive technology support, this is not a major issue, though be sure to get a quote from your preferred AV company, so you have an idea of what the costs are going to be to bring all the equipment on-site and set up. Also, consider any charges that may apply from the venue for your team to come in to set up early or even the day before.

Last but not least, check if your guests are able to access Wi-Fi on the conference floor as well as in their accommodation rooms. Most people attending conferences these days are multi-tasking – attending sessions, then getting on-line to keep on top of their emails and business needs. While in an ideal world, delegates plan to be 100% ‘present’ while attending the event, it is not always possible for them to turn away from their businesses for one or more full days, without maintaining contact.

Next week, I will look at accommodation options at or near your conference venue.

Author: Michelle Glasson, GEMS Event Management

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