Mandatory Meal Voucher
New this year is a Mandatory Meal Voucher that will be added to and included with the registration fee. The cost is $65 for full conference registrants (except students) and $25 each day for daily registrants. The meal voucher is mandatory, cannot be waived for anyone (including speakers whose registration fee is waived), and is not refundable if not used.
The voucher is applied automatically as a credit toward any conference meal(s) that are:
- catered by the Hilton Cleveland Downtown hotel or provided by the hotel through its kosher caterer and
- purchased through the website registration system.
This includes “Breakfasts with the Experts”, SIG or BOF lunches, box lunches, and the conference banquet.
The voucher does not apply to hotel restaurants or the rooftop Bar32. It also does not apply to the reception at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
The voucher will apply to accumulated meals purchased through the registration system. For example, suppose you sign up initially for $40 worth of meals. No charge would be made, since this would be covered by your meal voucher, which would still have $25 remaining that could be applied to additional meals added later. If you ultimately sign up for $65 worth of meals or more, you would use up the entire voucher (and be charged for any excess over $65). If you purchase meals ultimately totalling less than $65, the remainder of the voucher would be forfeited.
See the image below, which shows the charges for a registrant who purchased a number of fee-based items as part of the registration (information blurred to protect privacy). The charge for the meal voucher is shown in the red box, and two credits against it are shown in the blue box. The entire voucher was exhausted, so no credit was given against the two boxed lunches.
Why This Meal Voucher Is Required
The hotel provides meeting space for us at no charge in return for our spending a minimum amount on catered food. If we don’t reach the minimum, we would have to pay for the meeting rooms and increase registration fees accordingly. You can look on the meal voucher fee as a way to cover the rental of the meeting space, with the advantage that you can use it to offset the costs of conference meals.