Updated February 2, 2021
The $100 billion conferences and events industry has taken a massive hit since COVID-19 started making its way around the globe in the fall of 2019. Countries around the world have been taking tentative steps toward opening borders and economies and lifting restrictions related to the pandemic. As a new wave of cases emerge across portions of the U.S., these travel restrictions continue to evolve.
Even though most events originally planned for 2020 and early 2021 have been canceled, event planners are actively sourcing and booking events for later in 2021. See where events are currently taking place with the GES Interactive Global Event Tracker.
Groups360 is as ready as the rest of our industry peers to resume meetings and events. To assist with planning efforts, we’ve compiled a list of resources for how countries and U.S. states are reopening for business, travel and in-person gatherings.
The UNWTO, a United Nations tourism agency, released a report on global travel restrictions as of September 10, 2020. A summary of the report can be found on Forbes.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has produced an interactive map that details COVID-19 entry regulations by countries across the world updated more than 200 times daily. Users can click on an individual country to see the current status of airports, flights, and regulations from national governments. Countries are color-coded by the level of restrictions and available information.
Northstar Meetings Group has also compiled a summary of reopening plans from 30 countries other than the United States.
Northstar Meetings Group also put together the reopening status and event restrictions for all 50 states, as has Skift’s Event Manager Blog, though updates are made only as readers email with new information.
The New York Times continues to update an interactive list, “See How All 50 States Are Reopening.” The story includes a map of the U.S. color-coded by reopening, regional reopening, reopening soon, or shut down, as well as a drop-down menu to easily access information by state.
See Skift for a timeline of stories related to how the travel industry has been reopening, updated daily. You can browse by region (international or U.S.) and by sectors, such as airlines, destinations, hotels and meetings.
In September, United Airlines launched an interactive map of travel restrictions by state.
Groups360’s GroupSync sourcing platform currently displays up-to-date alerts on suspended operations for nearly 9,000 properties globally. Planners sourcing in GroupSync will see an icon in their search results inviting them to view more information about a particular property. A pop-up announcement will display dates the hotel may be closed or out of service, but only if the closure falls within the planner’s stated event dates.
Guidelines for events
The World Health Organization (WHO) released key planning recommendations for mass gatherings, but reaction from event professionals has been mixed. Read an explanation on Skift’s Event Manager Blog.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released new guidelines for events and social gatherings both indoor and outdoor, including concerts, festivals, conferences, and sporting activities. The guidelines, which emphasize reduced capacities and enhanced hygiene measures, should be considered alongside any city or state guidelines.