SportsEvents Magazine

JAN 2017

SportsEvents is edited for those who plan tournaments or other sports events.

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Page 10 of 67 January 2017 11 Rollin', Rollin', Rollin' BY T . WAYNE WATERS GAME Plan t ravel and transportation are key components of sports operations. Whether it's a sports event plan- ner's preparations, a host city's team tournament scenario, a sports team's out-of-town tournament participation or just a regu- lar-season away game, college football bowl game, the Olympics or any of the other similar situations, there are plenty of times when sports event planners and sports organizations have to make travel arrangements. Planning transportation for your event can be difficult with so many possibili- ties. Here are some suggestions for hitting the road from industry professionals. Pay A Visit...If Feasible Think of choosing a transportation provider as a blind date. You don't want to make a big commitment until you see if you like the other party and feel comfortable with them. Better to have a "get to know you" meeting first rather than going straight into a commitment of dinner and dancing. "What planners should be attuned to is knowing more about their transpor- tation provider," said Bronwyn Wilson, president of International Motorcoach Group (IMG), a standards-based net- work of 57 individual transportation companies across North America. "Who are they? What does their facility look like? What sort of training do they have in place for drivers, maintenance programs for their vehicles, safety training? IMG companies encourage customers to visit their facilities to understand this." Professional Affiliations Sometimes, due to distance or time con- straints, it just isn't feasible for a sports event planner or sports team administra- tor to visit a potential transportation firm ahead of time. Perhaps you can get some recommendations from professional col- leagues or find some testimonials online to follow up on. Maybe not. One thing you should always be able to do, though, is check out a company's professional affiliations. "An invitation to visit a particular transportation provider may not always be possible to take advantage of," Wilson said. "Therefore, look to know what affiliations a company has, for example IMG. IMG has very specific requirements for a company that add another layer to differentiating providers. While price is always important, it should not be the ► Getting Sports Event Participants to the Venue Safe, Sound & On Time T

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