New research shows Aussie business event planners are optimistic despite restrictions

Tourism Australia’s latest research into attitudes towards restarting business events confirms that despite the recent lockdowns and travel restrictions, decision-makers remain largely positive about the future of events.

Unsurprisingly, 77 per cent of businesses claim to have postponed or cancelled at least one event that was scheduled for June to October 2021.

One in five of these businesses claim they rescheduled their event within the next three months, whilst most have rescheduled four to 12 months from now.

Short-term planning of domestic events has also been impacted, with 62 per cent of domestic businesses claiming to be planning events in the next six to 12 months – its lowest level since October 2020.

Concerns about the COVID-19 safety reputation of potential event locations, health concerns and interstate borders are amongst the top influencing factors to events resuming.

However, despite the impact on short-term events, encouragingly 81 per cent of domestic corporate event decision-makers are planning events one to two years from now – up six per cent from May.

Decision-makers planning to hold events in the next 18 months or sooner indicated an increased desire to get back to face-to-face events, whilst still acknowledging the need for virtual or hybrid events.

In addition, decision-makers remain largely positive in terms of the planned budget and number of attendees of future domestic events.

Six in 10 businesses claim future events will involve some form of travel, with 29 per cent indicating future events are likely to be interstate – its highest level since the commencement of the research.

The sixth wave of research surveyed 452 people either solely or partly responsible for event decision-making between 29 September to 5 October 2021.

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