Travel Planner Lingo - Part 2
Last week, we shared the first 5 terms you need to know when working with a travel planner like Xplor, Inc. -- site visit, FAM trip, DMC, incentive trip, and shopping experience (click here for the post). This week we dig in even deeper with DMOs, PreCon, TDs, RFP, and CSMs!
DMO: Destination Marketing Organization
or CVBs: Convention & Visitors Bureau
A Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) or a Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) is a not for profit organization which represents a particular destination city or area. The DMO’s role is to promote the destination by working with travel planners to organize FAM trips and site inspections (see last week’s post for more info on these) and provide information, and give recommendations on local services and resources.
The services provided by DMOs are usually free to the travel planning companies as well as the local businesses they are promoting. The funding for the organizations often comes from hotel occupancy taxes. Travel planners consider DMO representatives to be experts on the area they serve and an invaluable source of information during the planning process.
PreCon: Pre-Conference or Convention Meeting
Before the conference is the pre-conference! Travel and event planners often meet with the conference services managers (see below) at the hotels, conference center, and/or other venues one to two days prior to an event. It is a chance for everyone to get on the same page, hammer out any last minute details, and confirm the schedule of events before the conference or convention gets rolling.
Besides the conference service manager, other venue staff may attend the meeting to review logistics, such as the food and beverage director, audio/visual manager, entertainment director or talent manager, and any other vendors or suppliers involved in the event.
TD: Travel Director
Travel director is one of the many hats worn by Xplor, Inc. team members! All of our team members take turns attending our trips and conferences to act as the onsite travel director. The primary role of a TD is to ensure that the trip or conference goes smoothly from beginning to end. Their duties can include registration of attendees, manning the hospitality desk to answer any attendee questions, making recommendations and reservations, and assisting with any issues that arise during the event. Basically, we act as a dedicated concierge to our clients and attendees for the duration of the trip or meeting.
RFP: Request for Proposal
A request for proposal (RFP) is a common business term, and in the travel industry, an important piece for determining the destination and venue for our trips and conferences. We may ask for an RFP for a hotel to host a large conference, a venue to hold a convention, or a resort to accommodate an incentive trip.
Gathering this information is key for our clients to make a decision on the location based on their budget, and their overall goal for the event. The RFP will usually also include details about contract terms, cancellation policies, and negotiated rates—all important information to know before making a final decision.
CSM: Convention Services Manager
A convention/conference services manager, or CSM, is an employee of hotel or convention venue. Their role is to help organize meetings, conferences, and events at the hotel or venue. The CSM works directly with travel planners to plan all aspects of the event and coordinates with the other departments at the venue.
The CSM will help to coordinate conference room space, catering services, audio and visual equipment, and plan the configuration of the space. It is their job to make sure no two events on the venue grounds overlap, and the required resources are available for each group. The CSM is the go to person if any unexpected issues arise and a great CSM is a quick thinker and problem solver!