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How to to Prevent the Spread of Viruses at Corporate Events

Are you concerned with the potential spread of illness at your corporate events? Continue reading to learn prevention tips for both event attendees and staff.

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Virus prevention tips for event planners

As meeting and event planners, we thoroughly understand and trust the power of human connection. When a group of people are brought together, there’s no limit to the ideas and inspiration that can ignite from face-to-face collaboration.

But the reality is, close proximity can also spread germs and spark illness. With growing global concern surrounding viral outbreaks, it’s imperative for our industry to focus on prevention.

Here are current best practices for cold and flu prevention at corporate events with event attendees, staff and all other parties considered.


How to Prevent Illness Onsite:

Policy and Procedures
  • Establish an on-site protocol/next steps with staff and hotel for anyone not feeling well.
  • Ensure your on-site emergency procedures include measures to address illness.
  • Consider developing quarantine protocols for individuals with suspected or confirmed cases of influenza or other contagious illnesses.
  • Ensure attendees provide emergency contact details in registration.
  • Consider giving small hand sanitizers to attendees at check-in.
  • Consider verifying attendee vaccination status during registration or before entry into an event.
  • Provide educational resources on preventing the spread of germs and viruses to attendees during peak cold and flu seasons to increase awareness.

Venue and Accommodations

  • Ensure venue management is increasing awareness of virus spread and encouraging vigor around cleanliness of equipment, surfaces and hands.
  • Ask Housekeeping team to increase wiping down of handles and other high-touch points/surfaces in public areas.
  • Place alcohol-based hand sanitizer stations throughout meeting spaces.
  • Locate the closest hospitals and pharmacies to your hotel to ensure fast response to anyone not feeling well.
  • Use organized van/bus transportation as opposed to directing attendees to taxis/rideshare.
Food & Beverage
  • Ensure that an approved surface disinfectant is available in the food production areas.
  • Ensure hand washing stations are set with water temperature of 120°F to kill any bacteria.
  • Make sure hand washing stations in food production areas are fully stocked with soap and appropriate hand sanitizer.
  • Serve plated meals when possible.
  • Eliminate attendee self-service if buffets are used. Ask that hotel staff man each chafing dish and serve guests.
  • For breaks, only serve snack items that are sealed and wrapped (no cookie trays, whole fruit, dips, etc).

Learn more about Crisis Management in Meetings and Events

Event planners walking onsite at a corporate event | BCD Meetings & Events

Proper Precautions for Event Staff:

  • Have a plan in place in case any staff is feeling sick before departure. It’s better to find a replacement than to have them attend the event and risk infecting others.
  • Make sure staff knows who and how to communicate with if they are feeling that they are unable to travel.
While traveling
  • Make sure to stay hydrated on the plane.
  • Wash your hands after touching the seat cushion.
  • Wipe down the tray table, in-seat entertainment system and the seat pocket.
  • Avoid touching surfaces in the airplane bathroom.
  • Store items near the top of your seat pocket.
  • Turn the air vent to high; this prevents germs from settling on you if a passenger next to you sneezes or coughs.
  • Avoid shaking hands.
  • Wash hands more frequently than normal.
  • Sneeze into arm.
In your hotel room
  • Wipe down the ice bucket and coffee maker before using.
  • Wash any glassware in the room before using.
  • Disinfect your remote control, door knob and light switches.
While onsite
  • Increase supply of bio hazard kits and training on proper steps for clean-up.
  • Reiterate to employees proper hand washing during daily briefings.
  • Distribute pocket size hand sanitizers for colleague use.
  • Add hand sanitizers in the office spaces.
  • Send home any colleague who handles food or beverage who shows any symptoms of a respiratory illness.


Originally published Mar 3, 2020 3:15:00 AM
Last updated on Jan 4, 2023 10:43:30 AM

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Written by BCD Meetings & Events

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