As the 2019 Global Meetings and Events Forecast produced by American Express Global Business Travel’s Meetings & Events division reveals, the industry is settling into a new normal after getting hit by the Great Recession a decade ago. The forecast, which was created by surveying 700 meetings and events professionals around the world and conducting interviews with 30 industry experts, indicates there consistently have been positive increases in both spend and attendees.

Despite this steady growth, there are a number of unique challenges meeting planners are facing today. Budgets are not growing as quickly as attendees’ expectations. Hotel and air prices are on their way up while commission rates, often used to fund meetings, are heading down. The European Union’s Global Data Protection Regulation is requiring event owners to scrutinize their data security and attendee privacy policies.

Then there are all the exciting technological transformations that are enhancing the attendee experience.

In addition to highlighting these universal shifts impacting the meetings and events space, our 2019 Forecast also delves into what important trends are occurring on a regional level. This year, we also have three special features:

  • “The Future of Personalisation” was written by our team at Banks Sadler. It offers important insights into how meeting planners can improve the attendee experience and use technology to do so.
  • “Meetings Legal Trends” looks at the key legal issues meeting owners need to consider in the current environment, including changing contract terms and conditions as well as the impact of the General Data Protection Regulation.
  • Finally, the “Latin America Destination Report: Perceptions of 5 Top Cities,” produced in partnership with IBTM Americas, illustrates the importance of personal experience and knowledge when it comes to planning meetings in the top five meetings destinations in Latin America.

To access the full 2019 Global Meetings and Events Forecast, click here.

By the way, those of you who are familiar with earlier editions of the forecast may notice that this year’s version has a fresh look. We hope you enjoy the easier-to-digest format!