New York City

CWT M&E Research: NYC Top City for Meetings in 2020

New York City is the top city in North America for meetings and events in 2020, according to newly released research from CWT Meetings & Events. The ranking is based on proprietary and industry data contained in CWT’s 2020 Meetings & Events Future Trends report, which will be published next week.

The top 10 cities for meetings and events in North America (versus 2019):

  1. New York (2)
  2. San Francisco (8)
  3. Chicago (9)
  4. Atlanta (-)
  5. Toronto (-)
  6. San Diego (-)
  7. Seattle (7)
  8. Orlando (3)
  9. Dallas/Fort Worth (6)
  10. Las Vegas (1)

Meetings Industry by the Numbers infographic

New York claimed the number one spot from Las Vegas, which fell to number 10 versus last year. San Francisco and Chicago, on the other hand, climbed six spots to claim the number two and number three ranking in 2020. After missing the cut in 2019, Atlanta, Toronto, and San Diego round out the top six destinations for meetings and events next year.

While demand for meetings and events continues to rise in North America, the pace of growth has fallen, tempered by political headwinds, according to the report. 

“Political events have a direct impact more than ever on companies’ quarterly and annual outlooks,” said Tony Wagner, vice president, Americas and South Pacific regions, CWT Meetings & Events, in a written statement. “Some industry segments are pulling back and are being a bit more cautious.”

Fears of a looming economic slump, driven in part by the deepening trade war between the world’s two largest economies, the U.S. and China, are also impacting booking times, according to CWT Meetings & Events. Large events previously booking at least six months in advance are now seeing shorter windows of three months due to geopolitical and global economic uncertainty.

Close at the heels of 2020’s top 10 North American cities are five destinations that are expected to make waves next year, including last year’s Super Bowl host, Minneapolis, as well as Indianapolis, Austin, Houston and Portland, according to the study. CWT Meetings & Events said that these destinations typically offer better values than the top-tier cities, along with an increasing number of competitive facilities that can host meetings and events of varying sizes.

Other key findings from CWT’s 2020 Meetings and Events Future Trends report include:

  1. Projected cost per attendee per day in 2020: $297 (up 26.9% year-over-year)
  2. Average lead time: 59 days
  3. Average meeting duration: 3 days
  4. Average group size: 73 people

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