Businesses spent the bulk of 2022 gradually increasing their meetings and travel spend. Coupled with strong leisure demand, the overall effect has been a surge in hotel room costs for meeting attendees in the second half of the year. Soaring room rates,
along with shifts in destination safety levels and monthly airlift, have resulted in significant changes to the top cities on Northstar Meetings Group's December 2022 Convention Cities Index Interim Report.
The CCi, which is updated biannually, serves as an essential guide to help meeting planners with the site-selection process for citywide events. A weighted ranking system is used to determine the top 25 U.S. cities and top 25 global cities that are well
suited to hosting large conventions. Planners can use the CCi to evaluate potential host cities based on the site-selection factors that are most pertinent to them.
The first and only of its kind, the CCi is compiled using an in-depth methodology and extensive research on six evaluation categories, including 1) the amount of indoor exhibit space at each city's largest convention center, 2) number of hotel rooms within
15 minutes' walking distance of the convention center, 3) average cost of a hotel room, 4) travel time (without traffic) from the nearest major international airport to the convention center, 5) number of direct flights per month and 6) the city's
safety level for travelers. Note: Some cities have more than one convention center that meet the exhibit space criteria (see charts at the bottom for details). The CCi data for these cities includes the total exhibit space, all nearby hotels and the
average travel time from all eligible convention centers to the nearest international airport.
The December 2022 CCi Interim Report includes updated data on room rates, safety scores and monthly flights. Average room rates were sourced from Business Travel News' 2022 Q3 Corporate Travel Index.
Flights per month were sourced from Cirium, an aviation analytics provider, which collects flight data from more than 2,000 sources, including airlines, airports and regulators. All direct flights
into the area's airports were considered. Safety scores were provided by GeoSure, an app that synthesizes data from sources like the CDC and the World Health Organization. Among factors considered:
health and medical concerns (including Covid-19 data), daytime/nighttime safety, LGBTQ+ safety, women's safety, theft and basic freedoms. On a scale of 1 to 100, the higher the number, the safer the destination.
All CCi data points will be refreshed again in June. Comparing the latest CCi to previous editions allows planners to gather a historical
view of the data and consequent changes in convention city competitiveness.
The most significant shifts to the U.S. list over the past six months include:
- Phoenix jumped up 11 spots thanks to a significant drop in hotel costs, along with improvements in airlift and safety.
- New York fell five spots as room rates rose and its safety score dipped.
- San Francisco dropped five spots after having one of the highest hotel price increases of all U.S. cities.
- Washington, D.C., moved down five spots thanks to a spike in hotel costs and a drop in safety.
Major movers on the global list are:
- Hannover, Germany, dropped five spots as room rates increased and airlift declined.
- Barcelona, Spain, fell six spots due to a hike in hotel costs and a dip in monthly flights.
- Kunming, China, rose six spots due to well-priced room rates and improvements to its safety score.
- New additions to the list include Dubai (#10); Qingdao, China (#19); Copenhagen, Denmark (#23); and Dongguan, China (#25). They replaced Munich; Milan; Chicago; and Goyang, South Korea.
Use the form above to download the full results.