Hosting MICE events after the Covid-19 pandemic
As the pandemic restrictions slowly ease and business gains some semblance of normality our thoughts turn to events, whether meetings, incentive trips or conferences and how they will operate in this ‘new normal’. Drawn to that bright light shining at the end of the tunnel, we have put together some tips to consider when planning your event, ensuring a little forward planning and the right measures are in place for safe, successful experiences for all involved.
From mountains and snow to dense forests, bustling towns, sleepy villages, and world-renowned resorts the choice of venue is endless in Portugal. With flights now back to operating globally, Portugal’s cautious yet consistent reopening makes it an ideal place to plan any MICE event. Once you have narrowed down the locale here are some aspects to consider, ensuring your next event goes off without a hitch.
Cleanliness at MICE events
The pandemic sure has taught us a lot, not least about cleanliness and the spreading of germs. Though they may have seemed alien at first, hand washing and sanitisers are here to stay. So too are cleanliness standards in venues, ensuring each locale is cleaned and checked before, during and after any event.
Clean and Safe Seal
Quick on the uptake when it came to ensuring tourist establishments (from accommodation to event venues) met the newest cleanliness standards being issued by the government as the pandemic took hold, the Portuguese Tourism Board implemented a seal that ensured establishments had had the training required and met the necessary standards to keep all their guests safe right from the offset. When looking for a venue, ensure it has the seal to guarantee it meets the highest cleanliness standards.
Hand Sanitiser Stations
While the Clean and Safe seal may ensure the venue is as germ-free as possible, keeping attendees safe means providing hand sanitiser stations spread evenly around your venue so that they can keep their hands sanitised at all times.
Event Management with Social Distancing
As well as keeping event venues clean, another pandemic rule set to live on is social distancing, which is sure to affect MICE events in more ways than one. Many standard parts of events will now have to be reconsidered to ensure as little contact between attendees as possible. Potential solutions could include spread-out seating plans to prevent crowding, as well as measures to avoid queueing, the sharing of equipment and utensils, and people generally milling around for whatever reason.
One effective way to streamline the social distancing aspect of events is to have them outdoors allowing guests to enjoy open-air venues and keep safer, all in one. Known for its excellent weather, especially further south, Portugal provides plenty of venue options that take advantage of year-round sunshine and striking sceneries.
Planning an Event with Certificates and Testing
With 85% of the population now vaccinated, Portugal no longer requires a vaccination certificate for accommodation or to eat indoors at restaurants (as of the 1st of October). However, attendees of large events and those travelling to Portugal will need to provide either a vaccination or recovery certificate, or a negative test result.
Providing quick testing facilities and ensuring the country’s stringent rules are upheld keeps everyone safe, from staff to guests, upping event safety and putting minds at ease.
Hybrid MICE events
The final consideration to keep in mind when hosting a MICE event post-pandemic is making it hybrid. Though many people are willing to travel and network in person again, many are still not, so making your event hybrid by streaming it on high-quality equipment brings many benefits:
- Attendees being allowed to choose whether they want to attend the event in-person or online.
- Lower numbers of physical participants; facilitating social distancing and giving events a more personal feel will allow people to network more effectively.
- A reduction in the need to travel for many, reducing the overall carbon footprint of the event.
Portugal’s versatility and iconic culture make it a perfect MICE destination for any bespoke event , so with bit of careful planning and some extra measures in place, you can be sure your next event will be one for the books for all the right reasons.