Earlier this month, thousands of meetings, events, and incentive travel professionals descended upon Frankfurt to attend IMEX, one of the largest trade shows for the events industry. We were invited to attend alongside Meet England, and immersed ourselves in the show, soaking up the electric atmosphere and creating new connections.  

Reflecting on our time, here are our top four takeaways:  


1.  Sustainability  

Industry interest in sustainable events is evident from how well-attended the sustainability-themed educational seminars were. Sustainability is a topic we’re passionate about at Meet Cambridge, so it was wonderful to gather with other event professionals to discuss how we as an industry can reduce waste and inspire positive change.  Top tips included being strict with the amount of food offered on buffets and embracing digital tech options.  


2.  Accessibility  

Accessibility also proved to be an emerging theme in the educational seminars, with one panel session discussing best practice examples of accessible destinations. The seminar stressed the importance of ensuring all delegates feel welcome and making sure that accessibility information is clearly displayed and readily available.  Destinations and venues all have an important role to play in creating friendly and welcoming environments for delegates, and it was fantastic to see IMEX championing inclusive event design. The Be Well Lounge, a quiet retreat away from the hustle and bustle of the show floor, offered meditation, breathing, and relaxation sessions.  All the educational theatres and stages were wheelchair accessible, and the IMEX website has a dedicated accessibility page which discusses catering, venue accessibility, transportation, and sensory information.  


3.  Impact

The talking point and theme for IMEX 2024 was Impact, and judging from the thousands of connections created between hospitality professionals and event planners, the show certainly embodied its theme! Thought-provoking seminars and discussions in the People and Planet Village tackled issues ranging from burnout, mental health, and how to help the next generation of events professionals. IMEX sparked conversations that continue to ripple through the industry, demonstrating the power of in-person meetings.  


4.  Cambridge 

Of course, no conversation about impactful events is complete without mentioning Cambridge. It’s always a joy to introduce new connections to our amazing city and reconnect with peers.  Cambridge is an exceptional destination for meetings, conferences, and events, and we were delighted to discuss the sustainability initiatives the city and our venues are incorporating.  


As we return to our respective corners of the globe, destinations, venues, and event planners continue these conversations with insights learned and connections strengthened. Together as an industry, we can shape the future of events for the better. IMEX served as our launchpad towards positive change, and we move forwards with the intent to make a positive impact on the planet and in our communities.  

If you didn’t have the opportunity to chat with us in Frankfurt, please do get in touch as we’d be delighted to speak with you.


Don't forget to check out our Sustainable Events Toolkit - a curated range of resources to help you ensure your event is environmentally and socially sustainable: https://www.meet-cambridge.com/events-services/sustainable-events-toolkit/