London and Barcelona remain the most popular destinations for UK event planners, but C&IT's State of the Industry report shows corporates are increasingly looking to more exotic locations across Europe, the Americas and Asia.
When asked which new destinations they are using for events in 2015, 7% of the 100-plus corporate event planners surveyed in the report said Brazil, 7% said Canada, while 4% said Vietnam, 4% Columbia and 4% Panama.
Chew Events recently confirmed a major conference in Vietnam and director Matthew Curran says the client was surprised by its capabilities.
"As soon as we spoke to the hotels and DMCs in Vietnam, we realised that it ticked all the same boxes as any other big C&I destination.
"We're delivering an event in Saigon, Ho Chi Minh, which is the more high-end and business-focused area. It's incredibly cheap, the service is five-star and it's relatively easy to fly to."
Other destinations clients are using for the first time include Baku, Bulgaria, Istanbul, Tokyo, Texas and Turks & Caicos.
And it's not just overseas destinations that brands are using. While London is a firm favourite (88% of clients named it their top UK destination in 2014), Birmingham and Manchester are growing in popularity as they offer more favourable prices, while York, Oxford, Bath and Bristol were also referenced.
C&IT is looking to champion the best established or emerging destinations that deliver for events with two new categories at this year's C&IT Awards.
Winners will be decided by C&IT readers, with votes cast both online prior to the awards and on the night. The ceremony takes place on 25 September at London Hilton on Park Lane.
The categories are free to enter and destinations that want to nominate themselves, or event planners that want to nominate their favourite destination, can do so here.
The short-haul category is open to all destinations under four hours' flight time from the UK including domestic cities, while the long-haul category is open to destinations with a flight time of more than four hours.
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