Fifty per cent of meetings and events organisers across Asia Pacific but excluding China (APEC) said they are planning to host physical events, according to a recent survey.

The survey, led by Marriott Bonvoy – Marriott International’s travel programme – on the expectations of Meetings and Events in the new normal, reached more than 500 respondents including event and meeting planners, administrative support staff and those in management roles across multiple industries in APEC.

In addition, 36 per cent of the respondents are planning to host more hybrid events, which combine physical and livestreaming elements.

However, there is a high volume of concerns around government regulations (45%), and safety and hygiene standards of venues (30%), amongst many others.

Rajeev Menon, president, APEC, Marriott International, said: “The current ‘new world’ we are experiencing through this pandemic has required us to have a different elevated experience for guests across different sectors and markets.

“We are seeing leisure travel slowly returning, followed by business and then groups. And with our Commitment to Clean initiative, we are ready to welcome guests back to our hotels around the world, providing them with a safe environment that aligns with expert protocols to travel and connect with confidence.”

Marriott International is introducing new content via a digital platform for Meetings & Events, which aims to help hosts, organisers and attendees plan and execute meetings.

Meeting planners now have access to a series of tools including an informational video, customer stories and resources that provide additional context and information for designing successful events in the current environment.

Through the survey, 70 per cent of respondents said they prefer domestic destinations. Marriott International properties across the region are now offering virtual solutions for event planners who are unable or prefer to not travel. Through these solutions, event planners will not have to be onsite to get a full picture of the properties and meeting facilities.

For those who do attend in person events, masks and hand sanitisers will be made available upon request by meeting planners and attendees, as well as regular temperature checks for all attendees upon arrival at the properties. Additionally, all associates are required to wear masks. Through the virtual planning, consultations, pre-convention meetings and site tours can be adapted to include hygiene and safety briefings.