Fam trips are of educational nature to give planners ideas, inspiration and networking opportunities with local suppliers.
Fam trips, or familiarisation trips, are designed for event planners to get acquainted with a destination. They are often organised by the Convention Bureau, hotel (or hotel chains) and other local suppliers. Organisers invite top decision makers to experience the best of what the destination has to offer.
Fam trips are exciting and fun! Destinations will go the extra mile to give you a lifetime experience. They will show you all the secret gems and be attentive to all your needs. You’ll often stay in luxury hotels or get the suite or best view. Most importantly, everything is organised for you and you just have to be there and can relax. This is one of the job perks.
Keep first day “light” for attendees
On the first day attendees are coming from different destinations, some have short, others long journeys to the airport of origin. Depending on the flight duration they can arrive exhausted. Often fam trip organisers plan a very packed programme on the first day but attendees can be exhausted to fully enjoy it. I recommend keeping the first day light, with a relaxed evening programme so we can have a good night sleep and save the energy for second day. Alternately offer your attendees an extra night the day before.
Facilitate attendee networking
On the first day when everyone arrives, most probably we are strangers to each other. Try to facilitate introductions, make an ice breaker or name badges including name, company and maybe a flag of the country of origin. Usually during the fam trip we find ourselves chatting on the bus, between the venue tours, at the table and introducing ourselves to each other. But would be better if the host plays a bigger role in facilitating networking.
Too much food
We appreciate the fantastic hospitality, but sometimes there is too much food. Starting with breakfast at the hotel, continues with splendid buffet lunches, coffee breaks, desserts, afternoon snacks and three course dinners can be too much. And because we also talk about sustainability, last thing we want is to waste food.
Invest in the invitation
If you want to attract decision makers, you must think creatively to prove it’s worth their time. The invitation is the first impression you give them if you cold call or even inviting an existing client, because they get many invitation so yours must stand out.
How is your experience with fam trips? How often do you go and what are the challenges you encounter?