Postpone, Don’t Cancel

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As the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic spreads, the mantra echoing throughout the industry is, “Postpone, Don’t Cancel.”

Even the 2020 Tokyo Olympics initially set to be held this summer has done just that, “ Postpone. Don’t Cancel,” with the games opening on July 23, 2021, and closing on August 8, 2021. Paralympics will be held August 24 through September 5, 2021.

Postpone, Don’t Cancel

Other groups that are adhering to the mantra, “Postpone. Don’t Cancel” include:

The International Wireless Communications Expo, which was initially scheduled for April 1 – 2, 2020, and has been rescheduled for Aug. 24 –  Aug. 28, 2020. The show garners 12,000 critical communications technology professionals.

The Digital Signage Expo (DSE), which was scheduled for March 31 – April 3, 2020, has been rescheduled for Sept. 15 – Sept. 18, 2020. The show attracts 4,000 digital signage and technology professionals and 200 exhibitors.

The Society of Surgical Oncology (SSO) announced that its International Conference on Surgical Cancer Care has been postponed to Aug. 17-20, in Boston.

The Promotional Products Association International (PPAI) has postponed its SPARK Conference, scheduled for July 15-17, recreating it into a one-day event at the PPAI Expo in January 2021.

Destinations International’s CEO Summit, scheduled for April 6-8 in Palm Springs, CA, will now be held Dec. 14-16 and its CMO Summit, originally set for April 26-28 in Seattle, will now be held August 30-September 1.

Prevue, too, has rescheduled its Texas Summit to August 20-21 using the same hotel that was booked for April, Delta by Marriott in Allen, TX. This two-day Summit will zero in on best practices in the various aspects of meeting and incentive planning: contracts and negotiations, data and reporting, safety and security, and ethics.

Naples Grande Beach Resort reports a similar trend with more than 85 percent of its group and event reservations for this spring being rescheduled for a later date, rather than canceled all together. The resort has the most meeting and event space in Naples, FL, with 83,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor space and 40 percent of its business comes from groups and events.

“This is a testament to the strength of the travel industry community,” says Melinda Hutchins, director of sales and marketing for Naples Grande Beach Resort. “We’re being extremely flexible with all travel plans and circumstances right now. From planners to agents and hotels to futures guests, we all need to work together during these unprecedented times and inspire hope that we’ll get through this and travel more than ever when this passes.”

At Cheeca Lodge & Spa, with 6,300 square feet of indoor and outdoor meeting and event space,  over 90 percent of the resort’s group event planners will postpone to a later date.

“We are working closely with all of our groups to extend flexible terms, with most aiming to reschedule their travel plans for Q3, Q4 or early 2021,” said Brianna Birtles, director of sales and marketing for Cheeca Lodge & Spa. “The overall feedback has been positive from the entire community. We look forward to continuing to work with planners, travel agents and hotel guests to ensure that we are able to welcome them back to Cheeca Lodge & Spa and the Florida Keys in the next coming months.”


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