COVID-19 Response & Protocols

COVID-19 Response & Protocols

As an attendee, you can rest assured that as we plan for the industry’s flagship event the safety of our attendees is our #1 top priority.  Find out how GBTA and the San Diego Convention Center (SDCC) will keep you safe during GBTA Convention 2022. 

Health Screening for the Global Business Travel Association 2022 Convention

The Global Business Travel Association is committed to putting on a safer conference experience

In accordance with CDC recommendations, GBTA will require all Convention attendees to present proof vaccination and a PCR test preferred and/or a CDC approved test taken within 48 hours prior to entry into the Convention Center, and complete a health survey each day in order to enter to the Convention.

We recommend arriving on Sunday to ensure your health credentials are checked and approved for entry in plenty of time, so as not to miss the start of the sessions.

The health and safety protocols established by GBTA are applicable to all attendees. The CDC notes that we are still learning how well the vaccines keep people from spreading COVID-19 and vaccinated individuals should continue to adhere to prevention measures that reduce spread when participating in events of this size.

Many of our protocols have been elevated beyond those recommended by the CDC, California Department of Public Health, and SDCC in order to ensure your safety and set an example for the industry. All attendees need to do their part to ensure the health and safety of event participants, staff, and partners.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is proof of Vaccination and a COVID-19 test required?
  • Every GBTA Convention participant, all GBTA staff, and guests will be required to upload proof of vaccination before being allowed into GBTA Events.  People are considered fully vaccinated 2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or 2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine.   For Convention 2022, you should receive your final dose by Friday, July 29, 2022.
  •  In accordance with CDC recommendations, GBTA requires all Convention attendees to present proof of a PCR test preferred and may require a CDC approved test​ taken within 48 hours prior to entry into the Convention (example - test on August 12, 2022 for August 14, 2022 entry). Attendees and guests must provide written documentation of your test result to GBTA.  Attendees are responsible for arranging and paying for this test (if applicable).  Check your local state’s health department sites to find a COVID-19 testing site near you. Testing Centers near the SDCC: View the list of testing centers or visit https://www.arcgis.com/apps/Nearby/index.html?appid=43118dc0d5d348d8ab20a81967a15401. You may need to schedule an appointment so plan accordingly!
  • GBTA will determine the event requirements at least 8 weeks prior to the event. 
Will I be required to wear a mask? Will PPE wear be provided?
  • Yes, we will require masks.   Gaiters, bandanas, and wearing only a face shield will not be permitted.  GBTA will provide masks and hand sanitizer. We will monitor face-covering guidelines and will provide any updates before the Convention.
What precautions are GBTA implementing for the safety and health of attendees?
  • The health and safety of our employees and attendees is a priority.
  • On-site medical in partnership with a local medical services company.  GBTA will work with a local medical services company and security teams to develop COVID-19 risk plans.
  • Daily COVID-19 questionnaire before entry into the event.
  • Enhanced cleaning protocols for GBTA meeting and event spaces.
  • Hand sanitizer will be available for attendees to take throughout the week at stations by the GBTA registration area and upon entering Expo Hall. 
  • Require frequent employee and vendor handwashing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds and increase monitoring to ensure adherence. 
  • No-touch policy (i.e., shaking hands, hugs, cheek kisses, limiting contact)
  • Require the use of masks among attendees, staff, and vendors.
  • Limit attendance or seating capacity to allow for social distancing or hosting smaller events in larger rooms.
  • Manage the flow and use multiple entrances and exits and discourage crowded waiting areas.
  • Provide physical guides to ensure that individuals remain at least 6 feet apart in lines and at other times, including appropriate signage/floor decals to reinforce spatial distancing and other safety reminders.
  • Use of shields or separators at registration and other areas as needed.
  • Socially distant food and beverage/meal set-ups.  Lunches will be individually packaged and preset.  Additional food safety plans will be developed for other food functions at the convention center.
  • Limit seating capacity, social distancing, and cleaning on GBTA hotel shuttles.  The larger convention room blocks are near the Convention Center (walking distance).
  • Wider Expo hall aisles and review of booth density numbers (staff and visitors allowed based on total square footage).
  • GBTA will continue to monitor safety guidelines.  Additional safety measures will be provided before the Convention.
What precautions are SDCC implementing for the safety and health of attendees for indoor events with more than 500 attendees?

COVID-19 Resources for the San Diego Convention Center:

San Diego Convention Center (SDCC) became one of the first convention centers in the United States to achieve the prestigious GBAC STAR™ facility accreditation. Under the guidance of the Global Biorisk Advisory Council (GBAC), SDCC is implementing a program of stringent protocols for cleaning, disinfection, and infectious disease prevention. To achieve the third-party validation, SDCC complied with the program’s 20 core elements, which range from “standard operating procedures and risk assessment strategies to personal protective equipment (PPE) and emergency preparedness measures.” In light of COVID-19, this detailed process ensures the participating facilities have considered all areas of risk and are meeting strict standards to support a safe and healthy environment for employees, partners, clients and guests.

The health and safety of our employees and attendees is a priority. The venue, service providers, and GBTA are working together to take reasonable precautions to follow any CDC or local government guidelines for health and safety at events. GBTA will continue to monitor these safety guidelines. Additional safety measures will be provided prior to the Convention. 

  • SDCC continues to monitor the situation through updates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the California Department of Public Health, along with direct dialogue with San Diego County Government officials.
  • As of September 20, 2021, San Diego requires verification of fully vaccinated status or pre-entry negative test result is required of all participants, and face coverings are recommended at indoor events. For the safety and well-being of our attendees, GBTA’s policies require both a vaccination and negative COVID-19 test. Indoor venue and event operators may not use self-attestation as a mode of verification. All businesses and venue operators must check the identification of all attendees age 18 and over to validate their vaccination record or proof of negative test. Acceptable identification is any document that includes the name of the person and photograph.
  • Since March 2020, we have worked closely with City, County, and Federal public health officials to support a healthy environment for emergency response efforts that have taken place in our building during the pandemic. With their guidance, we enhanced our cleaning, disinfection, and infectious disease prevention protocols, and conducted extensive employee training. Having supported continuous, 24/7 activities within our building for well over a year, we will have one of the most experienced teams in the country when events resume.
  • Our systems are carefully managed to provide the appropriate amount of indoor air circulation and proper outside makeup air. We have also installed additional hand sanitizer stations and hygiene reminder signage throughout the building.
  • Our food and beverage partner, Centerplate, earned an additional hygiene verification label, Rise SAFE, that is specifically for catering operations. Rise SAFE is managed by Centerplate's parent company, Sodexo, and Bureau Veritas, an independent world leader in testing, inspection and certification.
  • If the SDCC is alerted to a presumptive case of COVID-19 at the SDCC, the proper staff will work with the California Department of Public Health to follow the appropriate actions recommended.
  • Visit San Diego Safe Travel Information here.


What is the status of SDCC security?
  • The SDCC maintains twenty-four (24) hour building security in the public halls, corridors, and grounds.
  • The Security Command Center is staffed by SDCC security officers twenty-four (24) hours per day, seven (7) days per week.  Security officers are on duty twenty-four (24) hours per day, seven (7) days per week.
What are the precautions at Convention hotels?

Hotel Health & Safety Information is available on the housing portal that can be accessed after you have registered for the conference. If you have any questions, please contact GBTAconvention@onpeak.com.

Where can I find the latest transportation information?
  • GBTA is staying up to date on all travel guidelines, considerations, and restrictions from global and local authorities. We'll be reporting any major transportation or travel announcements that impact the event on the GBTA website.  See what action TSA's taking in response to COVID-19 at https://www.tsa.gov/coronavirus.
  • For further updates regarding domestic and international travel, please visit: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html.
How do I find out more about the San Diego International Airport (SAN)?
Is testing available at San Diego International Airport (SAN)?
  • SAN has an on-site COVID-19 testing option for travelers wanting to get tested before their trip. Appointments are required and there is a fee for tests. Please visit Carbon Health’s website for more information.
Where are the nearest COVID-19 testing locations in San Diego?

Testing Centers near the SDCC: View the list of testing centers or visit https://www.arcgis.com/apps/Nearby/index.html?appid=43118dc0d5d348d8ab20a81967a15401.

You may need to schedule an appointment so plan accordingly!

What is the Attendee/Exhibitor Personal Safety Commitment?
  • By registering and attending GBTA Convention 2022, you agree to comply with all Terms and Conditions, such as but not limited to standards of behavior, and engage in certain health-and-safety conduct as directed by state/local laws while attending the event.  This includes, but is not limited to, submitting to daily temperature checks/screenings, wearing a mask at all times in public areas, engaging in appropriate physical distancing, and not attending the event if you are ill or have been recently exposed to COVID-19.
  • In light of the ongoing spread of COVID-19, individuals who fall within any of the categories below should not attend the GBTA Convention. By attending the GBTA Convention, you certify that you do not fall into any of the following categories:
    • Individuals who currently or within the past fourteen (14) days have experienced any symptoms associated with COVID-19, which include fever, cough, and shortness of breath, among others.
    • Individuals who have traveled at any point in the past fourteen (14) days either internationally or to a community in the U.S. that has experienced or is experiencing sustained community spread of COVID-19; or
    • Individuals who believe that they may have been exposed to a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 or have been diagnosed with COVID-19 and are not yet cleared as non-contagious by state or local public health authorities or the health care team responsible for their treatment.
  • You agree to self-monitor for signs and symptoms of COVID-19 (symptoms typically include fever, cough, and shortness of breath) and contact GBTA if you experience symptoms of COVID-19 within 14 days after participating in the GBTA Convention. For symptoms of COVID-19, see Symptoms of COVID-19 | CDC.
Which vaccines are approved by the WHO?

GBTA expects all attendees to comply with these elevated protocols throughout the event. Should an attendee be found violating protocols multiple times, GBTA will ask the attendee to leave the event at which point the attendee will not be allowed to return and their event registration will be cancelled. Registration cancellation may result in financial responsibility for the attendee. GBTA will not provide reimbursement or credit of any kind incurred resulting from non-compliance and cancellation. Thank you in advance for helping us demonstrate safe event protocols to the industry!

We will update this section with more information as it becomes available. This is a very fluid time, and we will continue to evaluate what is needed to ensure you are comfortable and we meet safely. We will keep all participants updated as we get closer to the event.


Have a question about what GBTA and the San Diego Convention Center are doing to ensure the healthy and safety of our attendees? Email conventionhelp@gbta.org.