Group and Conference Travel
You want to make tours memorable, bind the group together and do something unique. You want to create activities that add value for your everyday business, that present a challenge to everyone on the tour and that allow everyone present to relax in each other’s company. You want it to be an extra-special experience, and you want to have a good time.
This is at the heart of every corporate trip and group travel arrangement. You have things you need to do together, but even so there should be scope for people to grow as a group and see one another in new contexts.
Putting together a group trip with a clear theme is the best way of making sure you have all the elements needed for a successful trip. You’ll see the best results when you link together the theme and activities according to the needs of the group. But there’s a lot to bear in mind, from planning to the trip itself to all the work afterwards. So if you’ve never organised a conference trip or group tour before, there are lots of things to think about to make sure everything runs smoothly and everyone gets the right things out of the trip.
Scanworld has organised lots of conference tours and group travel for companies and groups of all sizes. We’ve planned and run tours on the other side of the world, with all kinds of adventures and jam-packed programmes, but we’ve also organised challenging initiatives on a local level for smaller budgets and with simpler logistics. Both types can actually be just as successful. So regardless of who you are and what your dreams are, you’ll find lots of useful information in our travel guide.
If you want help with a certain element of your planning, or if you’d like us to organise your tour from start to finish, you’re always welcome to contact us. We’re sure we can create the perfect plan for you and your needs.
If you’d like inspiration on activities and where to go, or tips on how to organise your tour in purely practical terms, this is the guide for you.
Why do people select themed group travel?
One major advantage of conference travel with a clear theme is that these tours have a structured schedule. Anyone who’s ever planned a tour for a large group of people knows that planning is necessary so that the people involved don’t end up going off and doing their own thing. There might be a bit of grumbling initially if people feel they’re being controlled too strictly, but if you can work periods of free time in amongst all the things you’ve planned, and maybe provide a few different options occasionally, most people usually appreciate the fact that someone has made the effort to organise the tour so that everything goes well.
Moreover, tours involving planned activities bring groups together. The aim is for you to return home having enjoyed collective experiences that have formed new bonds between participants. Without a plan, there’s an enormous risk that people will just stick with the people they already spend time with every day. Having a clear idea can be the key to new encounters.
Activities and types of group travel
The big question is, what kind of tour should you choose? Do you want activities linked to your day-to-day business? Maybe you could visit a similar company or organisation to forge new contacts and find inspiration. Or maybe you’d like something that’s completely different to your everyday life, giving people the opportunity to see one another in completely new circumstances? It’s all up to you. Both variants can be incredibly successful, or maybe you could even consider a combination?
From experience, we know that many groups, particularly companies, want to combine various kinds of activity on their tours. The aim of this is to make sure there’s something for everyone, but they also want to create a varied schedule and successfully include factors linked to their business.
Scanworld has devised lots of combined group and conference tours and made it possible for participants to combine further training, culture, physical activities, relaxation and culinary highlights in a single tour. Like we said, if you’d like help with the planning or execution of a tour, or indeed both elements, you’re always welcome to contact us.
We also keep track of all the tax regulations, etc. relating to conference travel, and we know how you should set up your planning.
Inspiration for group and conference travel
Here are some of the types of tours we’ve planned and implemented. Click to view more information on the travel types and how we organised them. Take this as your inspiration, and remember: our aim is to create tours that meet your needs exactly.
Travelling to the mountains or the Alps as a company or group is extremely popular, and we have extensive experience of organising successful skiing tours. There are all kinds of activity options available, and people can usually find lots more to do than just go skiing – there’s something for everyone! Moreover, the season for skiing is ideal as companies often want tours to take place in winter or spring, when most people are on the job. Hotels are often suitable places where large groups of people can meet up for conferences and other get-togethers.
Find out more about skiing tours
Cycling on themed tours can be arranged in several different ways. We’ve arranged tours involving challenging cycling on winding roads and mountain trails, but we’ve also organised themed tours using bikes as a pleasant means of getting from A to B. Maybe you’d like everyone to have their own bike and spend a day travelling from vineyard to vineyard? Regardless of whether bicycles or mountain bikes play a central part in themed tours, or whether the cycling is just a tranquil element of the tour, cycling is usually a popular activity during group tours.
Find out more about cycling tours
Few things challenge people and bond together groups as effectively as sailing. It’s important for everybody to do their fair share and make sure all goes well once you’re out on the water. People normally really enjoy sailing tours. We’ve organised sailing tours in both Sweden and the Mediterranean, and of course sailing is available as a one-day event. But you can also take a longer sailing tour which involves you living on the boat or docking and staying somewhere on land.
Find out more about sailing tours
If you’d like to create a truly unique themed tour, horseback riding is a fun option. On horseback, you’re about as close to nature as you can possibly get. Maybe you’d like to try this as a multiple-day event, where you more or less live under the stars. We’ve organised all kinds of themed horseback riding tours, from shorter events in Sweden to longer tours in the USA – a truly classic country to experience on horseback.
Find out more about horseback riding tours
Wine provides the path into the culture of many countries and regions. Visiting vineyards and enjoying delicious food and drink is always highly appreciated on themed tours, and we have extensive experience of organising such tours. Learn all about wine production and taste wines in classic regions of France, Germany or Italy. Or why not head off on a longer journey into the wines of the “New World”? If there’s one thing that brings people together, it’s good wine.
Find out more about wine tours
Sometimes people want to push participants to their limits and force them outside their comfort zone. Whitewater rafting really provides this option. Rapids come in a range of difficulty grades, of course, so you don’t need to make the experience all that extreme. But if you want to create a challenging event, all the options are available to you. We have experience arranging tours involving whitewater rafting at various levels of difficulty.
A tour with the company
If you’re planning a themed tour for the entire company or part of the group, there are other things you need to bear in mind to make sure your tour is successful. You have to have a good time, of course, but you also want your company’s values and what you do to be part of the entire project.
One important element involves compiling consistent information for everyone on the tour so that everyone knows what’s going on. This not only makes the logistics as friction-free as possible, but also allows you to “brand” the tour as your own. The aim is to make it clear that it’s the company travelling, not just any old group of people.
To achieve this, we often use the Trippus tool for corporate tours. Essentially, this service offers the following functions:
- Invitations: Send out invitations with your own design. You have the opportunity to set the tone for the tour here and include the company’s logo and other values that you want involved throughout the entire process. A well-prepared invitation is so much more appreciated than just another regular email. There are functions here which allow you to easily follow up who accepts your invitation and monitor the development of the entire event.
- Registration: All registration during your themed tour then takes place via the tool. This is an invaluable aid for the person planning the tour. You can deal with all bookings relating to accommodation, seminars, meetings, meals, activities – and in fact everything you’re going to be doing on your tour. All this information is then collected in a single location. Participants can find out quickly about flight numbers, times, addresses, etc., and the organiser maintains complete control over costs and logistics.
- Practical functions: Being able to gather all information practically in a single location offers a number of opportunities. Instead of printing out schedules, tickets, accreditations, etc., all participants can be given the option of viewing this information in a single location from their computers, tablets or telephones. Essentially, people should just need one device for the entire tour.
- Follow-up: For your company, a good tour doesn’t come to an end when you arrive back home. Now you have to gather together people’s impressions and good experiences from the tour. The organiser can create questionnaires in the tool which participants can respond to by text message or email. As far as events go, you can publish videos and photos from the tour and maintain the sentiment you want to live on in the corporate group.
No matter where you want to go, what you’ll be doing and what type of company is travelling, these are incredibly useful functions that add enormous value from a corporate perspective. This tool also makes planning, implementation and follow-up so much simpler.
Checklist prior to conference tours
To finish off, we like to offer a checklist for you to use when you arrange group or conference tours. Make sure that you can check off everything in it, ensuring that your tour will go as smoothly as possible. For participants to be happy and everyone to have good memories of the tour, the logistics, etc. have to work.
- Budget: Check what kind of budget you have to work with and how the tour will be financed.
- Set the date: Decide when the tour is to take place. Make sure you plan ahead and that your tour doesn’t clash with anything else for (the majority of) participants.
- Activity requests: Collect suggestions for the theme of the tour by means of a questionnaire or meetings. The more support the tour has among group members, the easier it will be.
- Set targets: Decide what your prime objective with the tour is. This will make things easier when you then decide where you’re going to go and what you’re going to do.
- Decide on a theme: Work on the basis of activity requests and your budget, and decide on a theme. You could either arrange a new discussion with participants or chat to a smaller group of people handling the tour.
- Compare destinations: Come up with a number of destinations, and compare them. See whether they offer what you’re looking for and if you think they can live up to your objectives.
- Decide on a destination: Allow all participants to decide on the tour when you’ve arrived at two or three potential themed tours, or make the decision with the smaller group.
- Organise logistics: Book all types of travel – everything from the flights there and back to transfers and all other travel required during the tour.
- Book accommodation: Make sure that your accommodation arrangements have the support of the group. For example, find out whether there are reasons why some people don’t want to stay in a double room or if there are other things to take into account.
- Book meals: Make sure that your meals are planned as far as possible before departure. Also find out whether there are any special requests – allergies, vegetarian food, etc.
- Book activities: No matter what you do, you have to decide on such things in advance. You need premises for a conference, and if you want to do a special activity you have to plan it in advance.
- Allow for margins: Unforeseen events always happen when travelling with large groups, so make sure you have margins on your side when organising the tour.
- Compile a schedule: Write down everything that’ll be happening on your themed tour, ideally in great detail. People usually appreciate being told things beforehand rather than being taken by surprise.
- Compile a packing list: Some activities require special clothing and equipment. Describe this clearly for participants. You can also include simple instructions such as “don’t forget your passport!”.
- Be clear on the important things: When you send out your finished invitations, the most important information should be listed first – where you’ll be going, when you’ll be going and how you’ll be getting there.
- Pass on information: Send out all information to participants in plenty of time before departure.
Decide on a themed tour
Book the tour
Document the information
Here are a few things to bear in mind when planning a themed tour. But there are always other things to remember depending on what you’ll be doing, who you are and how your tour will be arranged.
Scanworld has been organising tours for many, many years, working for large groups and companies. So if you’d like help with anything – and to make your tour more practical and cost-effective – get in touch with us!