ASCEPT-BPS Scientific Meeting – Hong Kong
In May this year, Expert Events travelled to Hong Kong to run the ASCEPT-BPS Scientific Meeting, a joint venture between the Australasian Society of Clinical and Experimental Pharmacologist and Toxicologists and their British counterpart, the British Pharmacological Society. Hong Kong was chosen as the meeting location due to it being half way between both continents.
The meeting was held at the University of Hong Kong, in the conference centre attached to the Faculty of Medicine and 230 delegates attended the three day event. The scientific programme and the quality presenters were very well received, resulting in new collaborations and joint projects planned for the future.
The conference welcome reception was held amongst the trade exhibitors and sponsor stands. Whilst originally planned for an outdoor area, heavy rain saw an end to that! Fortunately the indoor exhibition area still suited the occasion well and drinks and canapes were served to delegates in this space.
The conference dinner was held at the end of day two, at the famous Jumbo Floating Restaurant in Aberdeen. Delegates travelled via coaches to the ferry terminal and then boarded a ferry for the short journey to the restaurant. During the evening, delegates were entertained by local acrobats and performers before enjoying a fabulous multicourse seafood banquet.
Being an inaugural conference, the committee were extremely pleased with the event and hope to run it again in the future.
Expert Events’ top tips for running a meeting in Hong Kong
- Utilise the services of the Hong Kong Tourism Bureau (HKTB). The HKTB arranged digital signage at the airport to welcome our delegates and they also provided copies of tourism brochures, maps and a pen for inclusion in delegate satchels. They even organised a traditional lion dance performance during the conference welcome reception which delegates really enjoyed. Best of all, it was all free!
- The airport train is an extremely convenient and easy way to travel into Central Hong Kong. The train is adjacent to the arrivals hall and you can purchase a ticket for approx. HK$100 (A$18) when you arrive. With departures every 7 minutes, the journey into town takes 25 minutes on trains that are modern, clean and efficient. When returning to the airport, we found the luggage check-in service at Central Station a real bonus. Just check your luggage in before boarding the train, receive your airline boarding pass and off you go. All you need to do at the airport upon arrival is clear customs. So easy!
- Whilst in Hong Kong, make use of the MRT. A day pass allows unlimited travel on the underground train network which will get you to most key locations.
- Have a back up plan for any outdoor events that are planned, especially during the monsoon season. Hong Kong humidity levels average around 75% – 85% year round so be prepared for this climate if you’re not used to it.
- Make sure you take some Hong Kong dollars in cash with you, as most taxis don’t accept credit cards. Many smaller restaurants and hawker stalls will also only deal in cash. And don’t forget some spending money for the markets too!
- Whilst many people speak English in Hong Kong (the country’s official languages are Chinese and English) you may find yourself in a taxi with a non-English speaking driver. It may help to take a printed version of your destination address in both English and Chinese, so you can show the driver.