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Recovery of business events remains strong leading into final quarter of 2023


EIC’s Global Events Barometer reports group hotel nights now equal 2019 bookings.

WASHINGTON, DC, USA – The Events Industry Council (EIC) released its quarterly Global Events Barometer for Q3 2023, which again pointed to a sustained recovery. Most notably, for the first time since the pandemic, group hotel nights matched 2019 levels.

As highlighted in EIC’s 2023 Global Economic Significance of Business Events Study released in May 2023, global business events continue to recover from the impacts of the pandemic. A critical piece of that study is understanding the events industry’s recovery as well as where the industry is heading.

EIC’s quarterly Global Events Barometer addresses the need to monitor our progress over time and by key global regions and countries. EIC’s research partner, Oxford Economics, created the Barometer and uses data provided by Amadeus Hospitality, Cvent, the Global Business Travel Association and STR Global to monitor the changes within the market relative to pre-pandemic levels.

Most indicators point to a continued strength for the global business events industry, though various factors, including weakening economies and global tensions, may spur a slowdown in 2024. Still, the forecast is overwhelmingly positive for an industry so impacted by the worldwide pandemic.

Key findings from EIC’s Q3 Global Events Barometer include:

  • The recovery in global hotel group room nights was driven by continued strength in Asia Pacific, as North America and Western Europe neared full recovery.
  • RFP activity for large and medium events fell to 101% of 2019 levels, while small events declined to 87% of 2019 levels.
  • The latest global economic outlook anticipates 2024 will be characterized by weaker economic activity, with a slowdown early in the year followed by tepid growth. Such conditions will keep business leaders cautious.
  • The top perceived downside risk to businesses in the near term is geopolitical tensions, such as those related to the Middle East, China-Taiwan, and Russia-NATO. More than a quarter of businesses now cite the risk that sticky inflation keeps interest rates higher for longer.

“Since we launched the Barometer in January 2022, we have observed a sustained uptick in events activity,” said EIC CEO Amy Calvert. “This points the way to a promising full recovery and continued evidence of the relevance of our sector and our industry’s true purpose— fostering human connections and collaboration.”

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Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.