Meeting planners often design events in cities they do not live; adding logistical challenges.
Meeting Planners chose a event destination city because of it's unique location, proximity to delegates and ease of travel but this often means planning a meeting in a city where they do not reside.
Here are some things to consider when planning an out of town event:
Once you determine the city where your event will take place, make plans to travel there and visit several venues. Find a venue that is easy to get to from the airport ( ie- has an airport shuttle or transportation alternatives). Give careful consideration to how helpful the hotel meeting planner is in getting you timely information and staying in touch. Be really clear where the hotel meeting planner roles and responsibilites end and your duties begin. Ask for a proposal complete with a planning timeline.
Find delegates or association board members who live in the city to be your eyes and ears and deal with location specific items.
Be sure to negotiate discounted room rates for out of town conference attendees.
Contact the local visitors and convention bureau for ideas on evening or after dinner speaker/ entertainment options.