Planning a holiday in a foreign city for a large group or looking towards a special experience in a new country or organizing a corporate event in an international location? In any of these cases, planning and organizing everything on your own, that too from your home country, can be strenuous and almost impossible. This is where a destination management company or DMC comes into the picture. A DMC is a company that offers a wide range of products and services related to travel. This includes coach tours, safaris, catering, airport pickups, vehicle rentals, accommodation bookings, special experiences, and event management as well. Here I will help you to pick a destination management company as per your requirements.
How to Select the Right Destination Management Company?
Most people or companies look for a destination management company if they want to plan a holiday or even an event in a foreign destination. As so much money and reputation are at stake, choosing the right destination management company becomes imperative. You need to put in efforts to find the DMC that will ensure that your event or trip is a success. As per my talks with travel expert Himanshu Laul, I have highlighted some points that will help you to pick the right destination management company.
#1 Choose a Local DMC
It is always best to choose a DMC from the city you are planning to visit or host your event. A local company that knows all about the city, including its weather, traffic conditions, culture, traditions, etc. is important if you want things to run smoothly. Such a company will know whom to approach, how to go about things, and ensure that things run smoothly without any glitches.
#2 Search on the Internet
The internet is a good place to start your search for the right DMC for your travel plans or event. Almost every DMC will have its own website that demonstrates the products and services they offer. Many will also display the names of their previous clients along with their reviews. The only glitch here is that the companies that come on the top of internet searches are the ones that do heavy promotion online. These companies may or may not be the best DMC in the city. Hence, deeper research is a must.
#3 Visit Trade Shows
Most DMCs take part in trade shows to promote their company and its products and services. Look out for trade shows and attend them. The advantage of attending trade shows is that you get to meet the spokespersons of the DMC directly and have a face-to-face talk with them. This will help you to clear your doubts and streamline your choices.
#4 Experience and Longevity
When it comes to selecting a destination management company, always go for a company that has been in the industry for a long time. The years of experience in the industry will ensure that they are familiar with the city and have the ability, skills, knowledge, and connections to organize the best tours and events. An experienced DMC is necessary to make your event or tour a grand success.
#5 Look for Reviews and Testimonials
Once you have streamlined a few destination management companies through the internet, personal references, or trade shows, the next step is to do a background check. Apart from the reviews on the company’s website, check on sites like Google, Yelp, Facebook, etc. for reviews. Moreover, you can also directly ask the companies for a reference of their previous clients. Once you get the references, you can directly talk to these clients about their experiences before making a decision.
#6 Previous Work and Pictures
Pictures and videos are great way of judging an event that the company has done previously. Do ask questions to know whether the photos on the website are images of real events conducted by them and not stock images. Moreover, you also need to ask questions about their previous work; for instance, how large or small was the event and how many people participated in it.
#7 Staff and Services: Outsourced or In-House?
An important question you need to ask is whether the staff and services the company offers is outsourced or in-house. For instance, whether they have their own staff or whether they outsource them as per need. It is important to remember that if the company is completely into outsourcing, it will hike up the total cost. Hence, it is always better to go for a DMC that has maximum in-house staff and services. However, it is also important to remember that a DMC will have to outsource some of the services, which is fine if they are all trustworthy.
#8 Request a Proposal
The final step is to request a proposal from the destination management company. While requesting a proposal, be clear about your expectations. State the goals and objectives, number of people attending, duration, transportation requirements, budge ranges, etc. for your event, program, or tour. A detailed request will ensure that you get a detailed proposal as per your requirements.
The destination management company can make or break your event or tour. Hence, choosing wisely is extremely crucial. Follow the tips provided above to ensure that you get the best services.