5 Tips for Planning Off-Season Meetings

Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale at Troon North
Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale at Troon North

Meeting in Scottsdale, Ariz.’s August heat or Banff, Canada’s February flurries may seem less than ideal, but for meeting planners, those circumstances may not matter, especially if a majority of your meeting is planned indoors. Here are five considerations when planning off-season meetings that will not only help you stay within budget, but could introduce a destination to your attendees in a whole new way.

  1. Costs are significantly lower. In August, Scottsdale, Ariz.’s resort rates drop significantly as demand is down during the destination’s hotter months. That means groups can stay at a Four- or Five-Diamond resort such as Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale at Troon North for much less, still providing a high-end experience for attendees within a company’s budget.
  2. Destinations are less crowded. Similar to costs being lower, destinations are less crowded during off-season months. That means your group can take over an entire property or even a downtown and not worry about traffic or high-demand rates.
  3. Attendees can participate in atypical activities. While groups might typically prefer a beach destination in the winter months, going to a mountain location such as Banff, Canada introduces groups to snow shoeing, dogsledding and even skiing activities that will be more memorable for attendees who have never before experienced them.
  4. Weather may play a role. Of course, planning during the off-season increases the chance of weather affecting your meeting. Make sure to always have a backup plan if, for instance, you’re planning an event in Bermuda during the rainy season.
  5. Staffing may be limited. Similarly, hotels and venues often decrease staff and even close some F&B outlets during the off-season because there are fewer crowds. Ask the hotels or venues about whether or not their property will be properly staffed and if all their food outlets will be open.