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COVID-19 Precautionary Trends We Can Expect for the Fall 2021 Event Season

With summer quickly approaching, TME is already gearing up for a busy fall season! Last month, we shared that hybrid events will continue to be popular for the foreseeable future, thus, some element of live attendance will be part of most programming.  Ensuring that attendees have a safe, comfortable, and enjoyable experience means careful coordination and communication among all parties about on-site safety protocols.  TME’S Vice President of Accounts, Jacquie Bayer, shares these helpful tips on navigating event precautions in light of COVID: 

  1. Plan for Variations with Rules
    • All parties involved in the event should agree to the precautions from the start. Don’t assume that everyone knows the rules — get it in writing. Determine who will enforce the rules.  Will the venue provide hand-sanitizer stations or signage about maintaining distance? Will there be additional security the client will need to hire to enforce any of these precautions?
    • Venues, planners, vendors, and clients alike will all have their own set of regulations to follow based on their leadership decisions and comfort levels. 
    • Planners may align with their clients, or have a pre-set protocol in place that clients can add to or take away from. 
  2. Keep People Informed
    • Communicate continuously with attendees in advance. 
      1. Prospective attendees can expect an increase in questionnaires leading up to the event. Organizations may decide to send surveys to their networks to determine the comfort level of their constituents and donors.  TME has noted that many attendees appreciate this additional contact, and will provide their opinions willingly. Most people want to get back to in-person events but are still concerned about safety. Providing them the opportunity to give an opinion is appreciated.
      2. Once protocols are determined, organizations must share this information with attendees. Being transparent and proactive with attendees will make the day-of process easier as people will know what to expect. 
  3. Event technology 
    • While event technology has steadily improved through the years, the pandemic brought an expedited advancement in the technology,  the development of self-registration via an app, the ability to engage online at a “virtual table” to thermal tracking during events, we are sure to see a continued increase in technology that helps keep events safe and smooth.
  4. Outdoor Events
    • Although we may be headed for some chillier weather towards the end of the year, expect to see more events outdoors rather than indoors. Hosting outdoor events decreases the risk of COVID-19 exponentially, and can typically allow more space to socially distance. 

As fall quickly approaches, determining proper precautions for in-person can be challenging but it doesn’t have to be. We are certified in Event Safety Protocols from the Event Leadership Institute and would love to help you plan your next steps for a safe, successful, and memorable event.

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