MPI’s latest Meetings Outlook report suggests industry professionals will have to 'dig deep into their bag of tricks' in order to stay on budget as costs increase at a faster rate.
Although 55% of EU planners predict an increase in budgets next year, it is anticipated to be around 1.7 per cent – not enough to counteract rises in costs for goods and services.
Respondants listed the areas of most concern as air travel (89%), catering (87%) and room rates (84%).
Air travel costs are expected to rise by 5%, with catering increasing by 4%, guest rooms by 3.9%, audiovisual by 3.1% and meeting rooms by 2.5%.
Overall, meeting and events business in Europe in anticipated to grow by 3.6% over the coming year, with 81% of survey respondents agreeing business conditions in 2015 will be favourable."Meeting professionals are bracing for significant hikes in the cost of putting on a meeting," states the report. "However, there’s a flip side to what’s going on; it’s fuelled in part by economic growth that is leading to a resurgence of meetings. Optimism in the EU, hard hit by a protracted economic downturn, is growing. EU meeting professionals anticipate larger amounts of business in the near future, better attendance at both live and virtual events and increased budgets and spending."