Photo Credit: Montreal's Palais des congrès

Montréal Still Ranked Top International Event Host in the Americas


Wednesday, September 15, 2021 12:30:00 PM

For a fourth consecutive year—and despite the pandemic—Montréal is the top-ranked city in the Americas for the number of international events hosted in 2020, according to the International Meetings Statistics Report, released recently by the Union of International Associations (UIA). Backed by the Palais des congrès de Montréal's remarkable adaptability during this unprecedented year the city welcomed 41 international events in 2020, outpacing other cities like Washington, New York and Chicago.

2020 Americas Rankings – Union of International Associations

Ranking / City / Number of Events
1 - Montréal, QC - 41
2 - Washington, D.C. - 32
3 - New York City - 30
4 - Piscataway, NJ - 22
5 - Chicago, IL - 17

As the site of 56% of the international events held across the country, Québec's largest city dominates the Canadian market. Its closest rivals, Ottawa and Toronto, each hosted 7 events, while Vancouver hosted 6. In addition, on a global basis, Montréal climbed from 17th to 11th position in 2020, outperforming such cities as Amsterdam, Dubai and Stockholm. Although the total number of events was far from what it was before the pandemic—with Montréal playing host to 129 events in 2019—the numbers remain impressive in light of the circumstances and confirm the city's international drawing power.

Founded in 1907 by Nobel laureate Henri La Fontaine and Paul Otlet, the Union of International Associations (UIA) maintains a database of over 70,000 organizations in 300 different countries and territories. The 2020 edition of the International Meetings Statistics Report identifies 471,800 events organized by 27,465 international organizations in 256 countries and 11,647 cities. Of course, the 2020 report is unique: it takes account not only of in-person events, but also fully virtual events as well as hybrid events. In addition, according to the UAI's data, 645 events were cancelled in 2020 while 1,642 were postponed.

The Palais innovated in Safety and Technology measures to maintain Montréal's excellent reputation
Montréal earned its enviable ranking based on in-person events organized through March 2020 and virtual and hybrid events held during the remainder of the year. To limit the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the city's reputation, a range of measures upholding the industry's most stringent standards was implemented at the Palais de congrès in keeping with the Palais Reopening Operating Guide to Running Events with Safety Standards (PROGRESS).

In addition, new services were put in place, including a turnkey solution for organizing hybrid events and an audio and video production studio. These new services leverage state-of-the-art technologies that combine in-person events and virtual discussions in real time, allowing clients to "reinvent themselves" and attract more participants to their events. Digital innovations like these are helping to put Montréal in the forefront of the event industry and at the top of rankings prepared by organizations like the UIA.

SOURCE: Palais des congrès de Montréal