Having a conference overseas can be incredibly challenging, but at the same time incredibly rewarding. Hosting international events allows associations to attract new members, share new ideas, and interact with people from around the globe. However, it is not to say that it is easy or cheap. Here are some things to consider.
The hardest thing will be to book the venue and everything that is required for it (such as audio/video, signage, and more). Unless you’re an expert in a given location, you’re going to need some help. For example, you may need to outsource to a company that knows meeting venues in Hong Kong. Then, even after you’ve picked out the location, you will need to go visit and scout it out yourself. You will also need to negotiate the terms and pricing, which can be hard for an international visitor.
The Costs of Participation
You then need to figure out the costs of participation. You have to remember that most, if not all, your participants will need to travel to the venue. With most overseas airfare starting at $1,500 or more, this can add a huge cost to a conference. Now, if companies are paying for it, it may not matter, but small businesses or individuals may have a much more difficult time. Then, you will also have to help travelers much more with transportation and accommodations, because everything will be new to them as well.
There are alternatives though. Instead of getting conference venues in Hong Kong, you could setup a video conference or other means to see people in multiple cities remotely. You could setup mini conferences in different locations to minimize travel costs. Or you could just have a conference closer to home. While an overseas conference may seem exotic, it may not be very cost effective.
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