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Large Meeting Timeline

Planning a large international meeting and exhibition ?  

An example timeline where you have an 18 months lead time…

17-18 Months Out

  • Set objectives, meeting/exhibition dates, location, theme, and format.
  • Conduct site visit.
  • Set preliminary budget.
  • Select freight company.
  • Negotiate hotel rates and blocks, sign hotel contracts.
  • Negotiate fares with official airline.
  • Select ground operator.
  • Select official car-rental agency.
  • Assemble exhibitor lists.
  • Set registration fees and policy.
  • Define promotional strategy.
  • Prepare first calendar notices and press releases for the exhibition.

16 Months Out

  • Arrange insurance coverage.
  • Develop logo/graphics theme.
  • Select exhibit service contractor.
  • Establish exhibitor space rates.
  • Produce exhibit floor plan.

14-15 Months Out

  • Invite and confirm key speakers.
  • Determine preliminary F&B requirements.
  • Negotiate menus and prices.
  • Select translation equipment, if needed.
  • Mail first exhibitor promotion, if needed.
  • Adjust exhibit floor plan (continuous).
  • Prepare and mail first meeting announcements and promotional materials to prospective attendees.

13 Months Out

  • Get speakers’ AV needs.

6-7 Months Out

  • Produce and mail second promotion to prospective attendees.
  • Begin processing registration forms.

4-5 Months Out

  • Prepare and mail third promotion to prospective attendees.
  • Adjust budget.
  • Confirm AV and translation requirements.
  • Assign speaker locations/times.

2-3 Months Out

  • Adjust budget.
  • Open host-city bank account, if required
  • Finalise session schedule and room assignments.
  • Select and contract with AV supplier.
  • Produce and mail exhibitor services kits; include AV order form.
  • Finalise F&B schedule.
  • Finalise translation personnel and equipment, if needed.
  • Determine on-site staff needs.
  • Determine security needs.
  • Order office and communications equipment needed on-site.
  • Order signage.
  • Compile exhibitor directory.
  • Finalise on-site computer requirements for registration.
  • Review processing and billing activity with hotels.

1 Month to 6 Weeks Out

  • Print conference guide.
  • Print workbooks.
  • Submit daily schedule to hotels.
  • Produce badges

3 Weeks Out Through Day of Meeting

  • Set up on-site office.
  • Pack and inventory materials.
  • Assemble registration packets.
  • Finalise F&B guarantees.
  • Make pre-event preparations on-site.
  • Supervise meeting on-site.


  • Pack and inventory materials.
  • Reconcile finances.
  • Do a post-budget performance review.

Source : http://meetingsnet.com

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