Are Conferences Still Worth it in 2023?
How many of us have gone to an event that really inspired us, but then rushed on to the next and never made time to implement the lessons or follow through with the people that shared the experience? (Guilty!) So are conferences still worth it?
Well, thanks to the pandemic, we know that we can work virtually if we really have to.
But now that we have a choice again, many business are asking, should we book that trip to a conference? Can’t I just connect on LinkedIn with people and book a zoom instead?
Yet we all know that virtual just isn’t the same as in person
It’s why we are in the travel industry, because we know the power of immersive experiences.
We know that the conversations you have when you’re casually hanging between activities are often the ones that lead to the serendipity that online interactions rarely create.
Why NOT travel to a conference?
1. The time it takes - How many of us have gone to an event that really inspired us, but then rushed on to the next and never made time to implement the lessons or follow through with the people that shared the experience? (Guilty!) It can take so much time to just get there that we often don't allocate the time to make sure the learnings from the event gets integrated into our business afterwards.
2. The financial cost of travel - inflation is real and on top of the high prices due to high demand post-COVID,
3. The carbon footprint - I was inspired by Norie Quinto’s on her quest to reduce her travel carbon through a conscious accounting.
I liked how she considered an approach to really consider the events that are worth the time, money and carbon. Being conscious about the decision rather than just assuming you must attend.
She also touches on the tricky topic of carbon offsetting. It appears that these efforts are mostly greenwashing, so I tend to avoid anything that’s a bit too easy (Qantas checkout) and strive to research the projects that are actually funded when I do try to offset using carbon credits.
I’ve been inspired by Intrepid’s efforts in this regard: Carbon Neutral Travel: How Intrepid Offset Your Trips | Intrepid Travel Blog
Yet, as an individual, it feels so difficult to offset properly.
Make sure the event or conference is worth it
Making sure the trip is worth it also means the ones you do attend will make an even bigger impact as you have more focus and ability to followup on the lessons and connections.
In light of the need to be more conscious in our choices, YouLi has committed to the following conferences & events this year:
- Student Educational Travel Organisation (SETO) - Networking event in Melbourne, Australia - keeping it local!
- Council of Australian Tour Operators (CATO) International Women's Day event in Sydney, Australia - keeping it on the continent!
- ATTA Maine in May for Adventure Travel destinations and operators - many YouLi clients attending
- Wanderful’s Women in Travel Summit for Brands and Travel content Creators - using YouLi for the event
- Transformational Travel Council’s (TTC)Transcend - using YouLi for the event
We selected #1 and #2 because they are local.
We are doing #3 and #4 because they are around the same time and “nearby” so I don’t have to fly back and forth to Australia. Thus reducing the carbon cost (and financial cost) to attend.
We are going to Transcend because we have a strong partnership with the TTC and missed last year. We are excited to be the platform and app for Transcend this year.
Which conferences are worth your time, money and carbon?
Did you know? YouLi offers event and conference features
If you are not only deciding which conferences to attend, but you're also organizing your own, get in touch with us to learn more about how YouLi can simplify the process and improve the customer experience for those who decide YOUR conference is worth it.