by Sarah J.F. Braley | August 01, 2015

How are meeting budgets set, destination decisions made, deals negotiated and dollars allocated? These are among the insights revealed in M&C's first Meeting Spend Survey.

Conducted online in May and June, the results were garnered from 189 respondents, 38 percent of whom are association meeting planners and 34 percent corporate planners. Other respondents represented third-party firms (11 percent), independent planners (5 percent), educational institutions (5 percent), government entities (2 percent) and other organizations (5 percent).

Among highlights from the research:
 Nearly one-third of respondents have annual budgets of $1 million or more.

 For 2016, most expect their meeting budgets to increase (48 percent) or remain the same (40 percent).

 Despite rising hotel rates, planners allocate more money for food and beverage (31 percent of a meeting's cost) than for lodging (25 percent).

 Planners wrangle over prices for all meeting elements, including guest rooms (91 percent), meeting space (89 percent), F&B (84 percent), A/V (74 percent) and Wi-Fi (66 percent).

The following pages put a graphic face on the findings.

> Which of the following best describes your title?

> Is meeting planning your primary responsibility?

> For what type of organization do you work?