Meeting and conventions are important to the Columbus community. As travel is currently being discouraged and meetings are being cancelled due to COVID-19, or coronavirus, we know this is a very confusing time. It important to understand that the situation is rapidly evolving, but we are dedicated to providing clear, open communication to all of our partners and clients during this time.
Please review the FAQ below and check out the industry resources provided at the end. We will continue to update with additional research and items that can help guide your organization through this period of uncertainly.
Is Columbus canceling events?
Experience Columbus and the Greater Columbus Sports Commission are currently contacting events that are scheduled to meet in Columbus in the next 60 days to discuss cancellation, postponement or rebooking.
This decision is a result of new CDC Guidelines that recommend no gatherings of 50+ people take place for the next 8 weeks. These guidelines are being enforced by a public health order from Ohio Governor Mike DeWine and Director of Ohio Department of Health, Dr. Amy Acton. This includes auditoriums, stadiums, arenas, large conference rooms, meeting halls, cafeterias or any other confined indoor or outdoor space. The order can be found here.
This is a precautionary measure to help stop the spread of COVID-19 and flatten the pandemic curve.
The health and safety of Columbus residents, visitors, fans and convention attendees is of utmost importance to Experience Columbus and the Greater Columbus Sports Commission. We are closely monitoring the situation in conjunction with local, regional and national health organizations.
Can I rebook my event in Columbus?
We would love to rebook you in our city for a future date. Please contact your sales manager to discuss availability for future meetings.
Is the convention center being converted to a medical facility?
The Greater Columbus Convention Center has been converted into a 1,000-bed field hospital for potential overflow of COVID-19 patients. Though this is not a necessary step at this time, Ohio anticipates hitting peak COVID-19 cases in mid-May. If the center is needed as a surge site, it is prepared to operate as such for 30 days and would house non-critical patients starting to recover but not ready to go home. An additional three weeks of shut down will be required to ensure proper decontamination and sanitization has taken place. We will continue to provide updates as they become available.
How are Experience Columbus and the Greater Columbus Sports Commission keeping track of the situation?
Experience Columbus and the Greater Columbus Sports Commission have set up regular calls with Columbus Public Health to ensure we are in lockstep with the most up-to-date recommendations and providing the latest information and recommendations to you, our clients. We are here to be a resource as much as we can and a connector to public health professionals who can help better assess events on an ongoing basis. We will continue to provide regular updates as they are necessary.
This is a very fluid situation and we are adhering to all the current recommendations provided by public health officials as well as industry organizations such as U.S. Travel, Destinations International, ASAE and PCMA. We are also in constant contact with our partners at the Ohio Hotel and Lodging Association, Ohio Restaurant Association, John Glenn Columbus International Airport, Greater Columbus Convention Center and our more than 1,000 partner businesses within the community to communicate proper safety protocols are put in place to prevent the spread of illness.
COVID-19 TRAVEL INDUSTRY RESOURCES
COVID-19 Resource Center
An updated 2020 outlook.
The Above and Beyond Foundation is providing urgent grants to hospitality industry workers who lost jobs.
COVID-19 and Travel Sentiment Survey
Tracking the meeting industry's response to Coronavirus
The CARES Act, the relief package that delivers economic support to the travel industry.
Columbus: Your Next Meeting Destination
Columbus, the 14th largest city in the United States as well as the fastest-growing city in the Midwest, is a smart and open community with a dynamic convention package that can fit the needs of any group. Located within a one-day drive or one-hour flight from more than half of the U.S. population, Columbus is easily accessible for all. Learn More.
Columbus is proud to have been selected to host PCMA’s Convening Leaders in 2023. Known as one of the nation’s most creative, forward-thinking and exciting cities, we look forward to showing thousands of attendees how Columbus is transforming meetings.
Will your group be next?
Contact us or submit an RFP now.
No matter where you are in your planning process, our highly skilled team of dedicated professionals is here to make your next meeting, conference, trade show or event in Columbus a success.