Association Executives and Conference Planners Consider Transportation Last, According to BostonCoach Survey

Lack of time, budget and attention has negative impact on making a great first and last impression
BOSTON and CHICAGO (August 13, 2007) – In planning large conferences, association executives and conference planners attach little importance to ground transportation, as illustrated in a new survey released by BostonCoach at the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) and The Center Annual Meeting & Exposition in Chicago.
BostonCoach is a leading, global ground transportation and transportation management company that specializes in executive sedan service, road shows and complex events such as major sporting events and also provides destination-management services in Boston.

Conference planners get one chance to make a great first impression, and transportation success or failure has a significant impact on that, says Catherine Chaulet, BostonCoach senior vice president of events. “The survey results indicate that conference planners are squandering their chance to make the best impression by not allocating enough resources for transportation as part of the overall event.”

The BostonCoach survey of 131 conference planners, event organizers and travel professionals, however, reveals that production and entertainment, the venue and hotel are much greater priorities for those producing large conferences than ground transportation. Transportation, ground and air, ranks last among seven conference components, echoing the survey findings released last month from meeting planners and event organizers.

Whether it’s a 20-person board meeting or a 2,000-person industry conference, transportation is a significant contributor to attendee satisfaction and merits more mind share and share of budget,  says Chaulet.

The BostonCoach survey found that conference planners, on average, select a hotel nine months before an event while beginning to plan ground transportation three months ahead of time, and they spend five times as much on food and beverage as they do on ground transportation. Chaulet adds, “There’s no cookie-cutter answer for the right amount of time and budget since each event has its own challenges and objectives but beginning to reserve vehicles and staff six to 12 months out for conferences of more than 1,000 attendees helps ensure quality and lock in pricing.”

The BostonCoach survey was fielded online in June, 2007.

About BostonCoach

BostonCoach provides safe, reliable and convenient chauffeured and group transportation in thousands of cities across 40 countries. At the same time, BostonCoach offers innovative programs and technology to help clients reduce, manage and control their transportation spend and risk.