Points of attention when booking a meeting room

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Are you organizing a meeting for the first time? Maybe you already have years of experience? Disregarding your experience, business meeting planners can still make beginner mistakes when booking venues. You want your guests to meet in a room that is comfortable. However, you do not want to receive feedback after the event about participants feeling trapped in a warm room without any daylight. So what should you pay attention to when booking a meeting room?

Small rooms

When booking a small-sized meeting space, you might be wondering: How large should the room actually be? If you were to ask the hotel, they prefer putting as many people in one space as possible to increase their margins. However, this does not benefit the event experience. Especially when you have to include screens or a stage, which is often forgotten. We suggest booking a slightly larger meeting room, which makes participants feel less cramped and more relaxed. The relatively small additional costs will be earned back in tenfold by the increased efficiency and focus of the participants.

 

Large rooms

However, in the case of large events, the opposite applies. Hotels will do everything to hold an interesting conference or meeting. For this reason, they often offer free upgrades to larger meeting rooms, or claim that only the largest room is available. This can turn out well for both parties. However, pay attention that the meeting room does not become too large for your needs. Such oversized rooms can often give an impersonal feeling to the meeting. Additionally, the chance of losing participants attention is also very likely. Therefore, check whether the meeting room can be reduced by adding a sliding wall or ask if the hotel has alternatives with possible noise barriers.

 

Location

Time is essential during events and meetings, and it is important to use it as efficiently as possible. When booking a venue, ensure that all meeting rooms are next to each other. Not only will this prevent questions about the way to the next meeting room, but it will also help match your tight schedule. If this is not possible, make sure the participants are clearly guided to the next room because you do not want them to get lost or be late.

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Daylight

No one wants to sit in a dark meeting room, cut off from daylight all day. It has been scientifically proven that daylight plays a substantial role in increasing comfort, calmness and well-being; you can really feel the difference. We always advice to choose a meeting space that has windows. In case that option is not available, make sure to schedule enough breaks with the possibility for your participants to stretch their legs outside.

 

Ceiling height

Ceiling heights are often underestimated or even forgotten by event planners. Regardless the size of the space, a low ceiling may result in the room feeling stuffy or cramped, as well as limiting the use of AV. Additionally, consider chandeliers because they can get in the way. For example, participants at the back of the room may not be able to see the screen because of low hanging chandeliers.

 

Pillars

Pillars are also commonly forgotten. Many hotels were built in the ‘60s at a time when it was not possible to build large open spaces without pillars. Although hotels have been refurbished the pillars are not always removed. In most cases they are not that problematic. However, note that the maximum number of participants that fit in a meeting room is lower than hotels state, as you want to prevent participants having their view obstructed by the pillars.

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AV

Have you already made up your mind about how to turn your meeting into an unforgettable experience? Audiovisual technologies can really bring things to the next level. Considering asking for a technical drawing of the meeting room with hanging points and AV options before signing the contract. You want to be able to implement all of your technical wishes. Additionally, check if you can take your own AV supplier to the hotel, or whether you have to purchase the AV supplier from the hotel. The supplier from the hotel is usually more expensive, because they add a markup on the AV costs.

 

Setup time

If you are planning to transform the space into a unique meeting room do not forget the setup time and communicate about this. In many cases hotels charge extra costs for this. However, even if the meeting room was booked the day before you can ask for it to be set up overnight.

Balancing your meeting room is quite a puzzle, as it depends on many different aspects. At Hypermice, we know all of the tips and tricks, and are happy to help you out. Feel free to contact us anytime.

November 22, 2019 — Mark Toonen
Last updated: May 18, 2020

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