HOW TO MINIMIZE THE IMPACT OF LARGE SCALE EVENTS IN NYC ON YOUR BUSINESS MEETINGS
Residents of the tri-state area are probably overly familiar with the nuisance that large gatherings and public events represent. The massive influx of people from out of town swarm into the already overcrowded highways, streets and restaurants, and the traffic grinds to a screeching halt. New York is probably the most affected area, particularly since most conventions take place there.
With the entire city gridlocked and the flow of tourists, vendors and event staff pouring in, NY is every religion’s version of hell combined for those trying to conduct a business meeting during these times of the year. Advanced planning represents your best bet if you intend to meet with partners, clients or stakeholders and postponing the conference does not constitute a viable option.
Don’t schedule the meeting during peak hours
When conventions, political campaign tours or sporting events take place in NY – or any major city for that matter – the peak hours are early in the morning and late in the evening. During peak hours, the city’s streets are bustling with slow moving, bumper to bumper traffic and getting around is next to impossible. Around lunchtime – before and a bit afterwards – the traffic wanes slightly and traversing the busy road infrastructure is somewhat easier. However, eating lunch in town is still not an option; an empty conference room and takeout represent your best bets in this sense.
Consider a dinner meeting
In spite of the massive influx of tourists from out of town, elegant bistros and restaurants aren’t very crowded in general. Attendees of these conventions generally prefer serving lunch and visiting tourist oriented spots, which means that upscale locations may be able to accommodate you and your guests. During the late evening and throughout the night, the town activity dies down. On a side note, don’t forget to reserve a table in advance.
Booking accommodations and transport
Speaking of making reservations, if clients or business partners are not from New York and have to fly in for the meeting you’ve scheduled, then they will require a place to stay. Now, since the vacancy of hotels is dependent on the size of the convention in town – the larger the event, the fewer available rooms – you have to ensure that hotel reservations are made at least a few weeks before the conference.
Otherwise, your guests will have to settle for subpar accommodations, in a less than ideal part of town, and that’s if they are lucky. It would reflect poorly on you and your company if such circumstances – which are completely avoidable with a bit of planning – came to pass. Remember, your stakeholders are not from NY, and therefore may not be familiar with the way things work during large scale events.
Ground transport is equally important
As previously mentioned, traffic on the streets of NY during a large scale gathering can be incredibly slow and frustrating, but the most significant issue is that you won’t be able to book a car on the fly. To put it simply, hailing a cab is going to be impossible and forcing your guests to walk is in poor taste.
One solution for the ground transportation problems consists of hiring a limo or corporate car service in advance. The experience and knowledge of the chauffeurs definitely comes in handy when you need to navigate the overcrowded downtown streets. Alternative routes and shortcuts known by these specialized service providers could cut hours of waiting in the gridlock. But there are a few other reasons why hiring a chauffeured executive car or limo is recommended for business meetings:
• Convenience: a comfortable vehicle equipped with all the amenities required for a meeting on the fly, from fully stocked mini-bar to electronics, Wi-Fi and featuring sufficient space for everyone onboard.
• Punctuality: the chauffeur will pick up you and your guests at the exact specified time, irrespective of the traffic, weather conditions or other factors that would otherwise cause delays.
• Presentation: luxury automobiles make a statement regarding your commitment to the comfort of your stakeholders and, at the same time, about your standards.
• Irreproachable customer service: there is a world of difference between the manners of professional chauffeurs and what you can expect from a taxi driver picking you up on the streets of NY.