The Geological Society of America®
is committed to advancing the geosciences, enhancing the growth
of its members, and promoting the geosciences in the service of
Our desire is to provide you with the highest
level of service regarding your upcoming section meeting. The following
information will assist you in planning your upcoming meeting.
GSA Meetings Coordinator will create the on line registration
form. Access to on line registration will be available through the GSA
web site. You'll need to provide registration fees and a list of associated
societies that will receive member rates. All events should include cost,
dates, times, maximums, and minimums.
In considering registration fees, take a look at
the whole picture of attendee types, accessible areas by type and fees
for areas of access (will guests be allowed into technical sessions?).
Fees should be structured fairly for all. Non-members shouldn't pay an
extremely high rate. If a one-day rate is offered for students, it should
be offered for professionals. Does the one-day rate look balanced for
all fee types? You will also need to determine an appropriate difference
in preregistration fees and on site fees.
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All registrants will receive a receipt
indicating that they have registered. For online registrants this will
be a confirmation letter emailed shortly after their registration is received.
A receipt for registration fees and events is also printed on the registrant's
On-site registrants will receive a receipt on the back of
their name badge.
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Policies should be clear and contain deadlines as possible.
Everyone on your committee should be versed in these policies as well
as your on-site registration staff. Utilize GSA Meetings Coordinator if
question arise regarding standard policy for the items listed below.
Some policies to consider early on are as follows:
| Refunds—what qualifies for one in
all fee areas?
|| Firm cancellation deadlines.
| Badge/Registration types and access to events?
|| Exhibitor perks—what are they if any?
| Family or friend wants to sit in on a talk?
|| Registrant lost all their tickets?
| What qualifies as a student registrant discount?
|| Free registrations—who?
| Exhibitor passes and access to the meeting
|| How will exhibitors be told to register
for the meeting?
| Lost badges—how to handle and anticipate.
|| Luggage storage on-site & liability?
| Are one-day registrations available?
|| Do field trip leaders have to register for
| Luncheon and tour ticket sales cutoffs happen
|| Do field trip registrants not attending
the meeting have register for the meeting?
| How are the press handled? Will there be
a press room?
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For some events, such as luncheons and guest tours,
tickets will be attached to the registrant's badge for pickup on-site.
You will need to provide the Meetings Coordinator the information to be
printed on the ticket. Departure information and return times, bus pickup
points, and what may or may not be included in ticket costs so that the
registrant is once again reminded.
Provide someone at the departure point or room to take the tickets. See
that this person has brief information on the event (are more tickets
available for sale? lost tickets, etc.). You may want a roster on hand
for a reference of those previously registered. Retain the tickets taken
to verify the guarantee afterwards against the catering bill.
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What you do in the registration area on-site is critical.
This is the focal point for the entire meeting. Orient your student volunteers
and staff on meeting schedules, room assignments, services available and
policies. You can't provide them with too much information on your meeting.
The more information provided will help them feel more comfortable, and
the registrants will get their questions answered. When considering what
information to have available you should realize that the registrant doesn't
always see the registration area only once when they pick up their packets—they
will return again and again for guidance, reference, or help! GSA Meetings
Coordinator will set up the on-site registration desk approximately four
hours previous to the opening of the meeting.
#4 is a diagram of the on-site registration floor plan. Use
this floor plan when you meet with the facility coordinator that
will handle your meeting set up. If changes have to be made to the
floor plan be sure to discuss them with GSA Meetings Coordinator
prior to the start of the meeting.
The on-site registration area should be attractive,
clean, and organized. Your GSA Meetings Coordinator will provide signs
announcing the meeting and directing registrants to the registration desk.
Check with your registration coordinator concerning any banners or signs
you may want to provide.
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Schedule your orientations, allowing ample time for questions and answers
and review of policies. If possible, schedule registration to open a few
hours after your staff arrives. They can go through their orientation
with you and help possible registrants wandering around in the area to
get some procedures down before registration opens and lines actually
begin. Their performance will have improved by the time lines begin to
form and you will find the lines will go quickly. Don't expect that you
will have covered everything in your orientation. The registrants will
have plenty questions to keep you on your toes.
All volunteers and staff should be provided with a tour of the facility
before registration opens. This gives them an idea on where to direct
registrants searching for the speaker ready room, press room, or technical
sessions. It also is a way to help them correlate the program copy with
the actual services your meeting provides.
Don't forget to give your staff a brief rundown on GSA as a whole. This
helps them understand what the meeting is all about. They will also appear
to be more informed. Always keep in mind, the registrant will think that
everyone working behind the counters is from GSA headquarters or a member
of your local committee.
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A message board or system should be provided and publicized for the registrants'
use. You may want this system tied in with the general information area.
This will keep your volunteer staff person there busy. Your volunteer
at this location should be versed in local information, facility information,
and general meeting schedules and registrant services offered. Locate
this desk near the registration counters so that the registration staff
can offer assistance during breaks.