Offer information and options
Save your guests the work of having to research hotels in your area. Choose two or three hotels at varying price ranges featuring a variety of amenities, and then email your guests with the details or post it to your event’s website. Give an indication of how much time in advance they should book their stay.
Arrange for discounts
If you will be hosting several out-of-town guests, consider reserving a block of rooms at a hotel. Many establishments offer a discounted rate for groups of rooms, because hotels appreciate the guaranteed guests. Let your guests know about the rooms and the discount. Give them the deadline for reserving a room as set by the hotel.
Prepare a welcome package
Accommodate out-of-town guests by taking the mystery out of their stay. Prepare a package that contains the itinerary, as well as information about the area. Include brochures on nearby attractions and places of interest, as well as a listing of local restaurants and potentially useful resources like the local drugstore.
Offer your appreciation for the attendance of out-of-town guests by also adding something fun to the welcome package like a light snack such as fresh fruit or candies or a bouquet of flowers to brighten their room.
Assign a host
Consider having a “host,” a friend or family member that checks to make sure all your guests have arrived safely. If the host is willing, considering providing his or her phone number to the guests, so guests have an informed contact to reach out to as needed.
Arrange for transportation
Book a block at a hotel that has a shuttle service and alert your guests to this option. Also, indicate where they can rent a car, and be sure to inform them if you feel having a car is necessary for getting around your city. You may even want to book transportation for out-of-town guests for the day of the event, especially if you’ll be serving alcohol at your event. Be sure to include clear instructions to and from the event in the welcome bag for those who are coming and going on their own.
Accommodating out-of-town-guests with an inviting place to stay takes some preparation on your part, but the result of comfortable, well-informed guests is well worth the effort.