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Understanding the Biggest Challenges Facing the Event Industry This Year

Posted:   April 10, 2017

Every year, PCMA Convene generates a survey about the event industry and its anticipated challenges for the following year. After reading through the results, we’ve pinpointed some of the trickiest challenges event planners will face this year and how they compare to 2016.

Rising Hotel Costs

In addition to the rising price of hotel room blocks, which have been trending upward for years, hotels are also seeking additional revenue opportunities wherever they can find them. This means an increase in Food & Beverage expenses, attrition costs, and hidden fees for services like early check-in, luggage storage, etc. Many expect 2017 to continue in the same direction, with the seller’s market making it increasingly difficult to meet client expectations while remaining on budget.

The Growth of Airbnb

As Airbnb continues to grow in popularity, event planners struggle to accommodate guests who prefer a more immersive travel experience tailored to their individual style and interests. Airbnb has certainly been on the radar for years; however, the new “Experiences” feature, which launched at the end of the year, expands their reach within the travel industry. While Airbnb challenges the standard operating procedure for room block accommodations and conference housing, like all challenges, it does offer a unique opportunity for innovation and growth.

Domestic and International Regulations

With the Fair Labor Standards Act, the most recent Executive Order Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States, and other impending domestic and international regulations, event planners are worried about the effects these regulations will have on event costs and attendance numbers. There is also a sense of economic uncertainty and possible political upheaval, which could pose problems down the line for the conference and event planning industry.


It’s impossible to perfectly predict industry trends; however, by tracking the biggest challenges the industry faces, we can better consider what types of trends these challenges will dictate in the coming years. Learn more about how the talented staff at Vicki Johnson & Associates can help you navigate the changing landscape of conference management.

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