Turku is Finland's oldest city, whose centre offers 2,000 hotel rooms. Nearly all the hotels are located within walking distance, two to three blocks, of each other and along the Aura River. The Aura Riverfront is a beautiful and fascinating area, where you'll find large banquet halls, restaurants, cafés, galleries, interior decor shops, museums and the nearly 800-year-old Turku Castle. Turku is an ideal venue for hosting a conference, event or banquet with a 'green' philosophy, which is also a cost-effective way to go.
- Choose a conference venue that is walking distance to the hotels or has easy access to mass transit.
- Make an effort to minimise the use of transportation.
- Participants are provided with information on how to get around the city: maps, mass transit timetables and routes as well as information on bicycle rentals.
- Choose a hotel or multiple hotels that are within walking distance from the conference venue and banquet facilities.
- Give preference to hotels with an environmental certificate.
- Discuss the menu with the hotel or banquet hall staff. The menu should emphasise local foods and domestic seasonal ingredients.
- Give preference to vegetarian foods or offer a vegetarian alternative to meat dishes.
- Request fabric tablecloths for banquet tables and avoid the use of disposable dishware.
- Serve conference water from pitchers and, well in advance, inform guests arriving in Finland that Finnish tap water is of the highest quality and potable.
- Make preregistration arrangements for events and banquets so that caterers can be informed of the exact number of attendees prior to the event.
Marketing, registration and conference materials:
- Conference marketing and registration materials should be concentrated online.
- Minimise the amount of printed materials and consider whether the event materials can be delivered to participants online after the event.
- If tote bags or folders are being acquired for the event, look into alternatives offered by Finnish and local enterprises. (Erikoislaukku Oy Loimaalla, KUI Design and Klo Design Turussa)
- Consider whether gifts to be presented to speakers and participants should be environmentally-friendly, such as food products (Finnish chocolate, mustard, Xylitol products) or non-physical, such as a donation to a local recipient
- Give preference to additional activities with a minimal environmental impact, such as a guided walking tour, seeing the city by bike or a Nordic walking tour.