Jump to content

Banff Or Whistler For Conference

Where To Hold The Conference  

69 members have voted

You do not have permission to vote in this poll, or see the poll results. Please sign in or register to vote in this poll.

Recommended Posts

Goodmorning All,


Just walked in the door from a reasonable summer. Emptied the bags with the Mrs and then I unpacked my suitcase. I voted for Whistler becasue of a few points already mentioned. ie. Close proximity to the Village, good nightlife and close to Major Airport for our overseas visitors. Six of one, half dozen the other as far as facilities go. Both world class and sure to be a good time.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 67
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Something else for your feedback. Below are the rates I got from the Banff Springs Hotel. What are your thoughts, reasonable, or not.


Room Type: Single/Double


Fairmont $189.00

Deluxe $229.00

Signature $269.00

Junior Suite $309.00

One Bedroom Suite $409.00


Obviously these are in Canadian dollars. I think they are pretty good as normal rack rate starts at $300 Canadian per night. Thanks again for feedback guys and look forward to more of your input.




Heli Ops :jerry:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Heli Ops...


The Banff Springs seems pricey for November. I would think at that time of year there are better deals to be had in Banff, (closer to downtown too, the Springs is 5 K out of town)


I know Whistler has good deals at that time. For example a 1000 sq foot, two bedroom, two bathroom condo with a private hot tub goes for $120.00 cdn a night, (pre ski season prices) and I can personaly guarantee that price on 6 units. There are hundreds to choose from....



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Heli-Ops Jerry, with all due respect, I have some questions because I'm confused.........


At first the "Global Helicopter Owners, Operators and Maintainers conference" was to be held on very expensive Hamilton Island, Australia.

Then it moved to equally expensive (and equally distant for Canadians) Sun City, South Africa.

Now it is moving to either of two towns that we Canadians have known since we were kids, and have all watched grow into **** expensive resorts.

The prices listed would sound pretty good if you had some US currency to burn.

Or if your employer was picking-up the whole tab on the company's expense account.

But they do seem quite high considering there is basically no golf or skiing in either town during November, and they are probably beyond the reach of the average Canadian pilot or engineer that frequents this website.



What is this "conference" for, what are the fees to attend, and what will it do that the annual HAI/Heli-Expo doesn't do ??


Is this a "Global Helicopter Owners, Operators conference/seminar/workshop" type of thing?? If so, Banff or Whistler will do just fine. I'm sure you'll get some great articles and photos for your magazine.


Or is it a fun weekend for working pilots and engineers to play some bad golf, see old buddies, remember the ones we've lost, drink some beer and tell a few good stories event ??

If so, I would suggest a smaller, cheaper town such as Golden, or Revelstoke on the long weekend in October. Several of us have discussed this type of gathering in the past.

Naturally, as workers in the helicopter industry, yourself and Ned would be most welcome to attend, though it might be best not to print some of the weekend's events in anything other than a Police Report !!!


Good luck with whatever you have in mind,

Respectfully, OT

Link to comment
Share on other sites



Appreciate your frank comments and am happy to answer your queries.


Yes the conference was originally going to be held on Hamilton Island on the Great Barrier Reef of Australia. When the dates were planned the organisers forgot about the fire seasons and how much that would restrict a lot of pilots and operators attending the event. In addition it was so close to the Australian Intl Airshow that a lot of operators from this region had prior commitments. The decision was then made to look at other possible dates and still keep it at Hamilton Island. Unfortunately this option couldnt work because Hamilton Island was so booked up the only other dates they had available were right in the middle of fire season. We got to the stage where we have secured enough sponsors and sponsorship money to make the event happen and these sponsors are happy to go with it, no matter where we make it happen.


We then decided to look at Sun City as an alternative. This was never a done deal and thats why I asked everyone for their feedback before we made a final decision. The prices we had for accommodation at Sun City were actually very very good and the main decision on not having it there was the negative impression most of the industry had of Sun City. South Africa itself would be a great location but we had to take into account a lot of factors and airline fares to get there were one of the main considerations.


After a lot of phone calls to operators and pilots around the globe the general consensus was that Canada was the ideal location. We surveyed around and thought about two locations that attendees could also bring their families if they wanted to stay on for a short holiday. That was one of the contributing factors when looking at Banff and Whistler. If you have any other suggestions on what location would work best in Canada then I am all ears.


With regards to the conference itself, it is basically four full days of seminars and workshops without all the stands and booths that Heli Expo, ALEA etc have. For the past two years we have been working on this concept as a way to give pilots, engineers, owners and operators a mini conference of their own without being hijacked by the big manufacturers blowing their trumpets etc. There will be no booths, no stands etc. Each day will have five morning sessions and then five sessions in the afternoon. Below is what we have got into the mix so far. I would welcome your feedback on it and any other suggestions you may have about it.



Registration Open


Welcome Function




Dir of Maint Roundtable

Risk Management

Helicopter Tourism Roundtable

Offshore Operators Roundtable

Utility Operators Roundtable

NVG In Police & EMS Operations

Operators & Maint Working as One.


Longlining - The Ups and Downs Of It.

Flight & Duty Times

Procedures & Limitations

Marketing Your Company

Accidents & The Lessons Learnt

Employment - Who Wants Who

Dangerous Goods for the Small Operator

SAR/Hoist Users Roundtable

Global Fire Fighting Operations

CRM for Single Pilot Operations

Chief Pilot Roundtable

Working in the Wire Environment

Pushing the Flight Envelope - Flight Test

Chosing a Completion House

Fatigue Management in Maintenance Ops

Civil Use of Ex Military Aircraft

Heli Skiing Roundtable

Helicopter Performance

Emergency Procedures

Safety from a Canadian Perspective

Preparing for your Job Interview

LTE - Myth or Fact

Long Lines vs Short Lines

Training for the Real World Operator

White Outs & Winter Flying

Working in the Wire Environment

Legal Liabilities - Your Rights.

CRM for the Multi Crew Cockpit

Private Owners Roundtable

Flight Training Roundtable.

Vortex Ring & Setting With Power

Using the Internet.

Human Factors in Night Flying

Aircraft Mods - How, Wheres and Why

Mustering Operations Roundtable

Night VFR Ops - Lessons Learnt

Confined Area Operations

Certification of Russian Aircraft

EMS Funding - How To Get It.



Gala Dinner - Closing Ceremony


The projected fees for the event will probably be around the $200 Cdn mark and that will include the welcome cocktail party, including drinks of course, the morning tea, lunch and afternoon teas and also the end of conference dinner. Plus it will include some other goodies that I wont explain here other than to say they will be enjoyed. The sponsorship monies and registration fees are also being used to get the speakers to the location for each subject and believe me they are some of the best in the industry.


And also to clarify one thing, this is not being done to get stories for the magazine. I have put in nearly $15K of my own money so far to help bring this thing together so far and have budgeted for more yet. I am doing this because I have been involved in the helicopter industry since I was 15 years old, and now have the chance to put something back into the industry. Will I include coverage in the magazine - Yes, will I use the magazine to promote the event - Yes, will I give magazines away at the conference - Yes. Is it being done just for the magazines benefit - No. Is it being done for the benefit of this industry we all work in and enjoy - Yes. The best way to improve the industry is through networking and this sort of event gives everyone the chance to network, whether it be with people from next door, or across the world.


We are planning on having approx 300 people and will limit the numbers to maybe 350 as we want this to be a success.


Hope this answers your questions and if you have other locations to suggest that would be great. We have set a date of 1st of November to have everything finalised so if you have some feedback let me know now.




Heli Ops

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ned, excellent reply, thank you for the clarification.

The concept and agenda sound very good.

With this information, I think Banff would be quite successful.

As an alternative to the Banff Springs Hotel, there might be a hotel closer to the town center that could host 350 people as a meeting headquarters, and at a better price. I'm sure that would also allow for cheaper motels within walking distance of the HQ for those of us on a tight budget.

I haven't been there for years, so any of you guys living in Banff/Canmore have any suggestions ??


By the way, 350 people isn't much. I'm sure Canadians and North-western US delegates could fill that pretty easily.

Have you considered having these small conferences in different parts of the world focusing on regional activities??

The one in Banff could focus on mountain flying, long-lining, forest fire fighting,...... but not offshore oil-rig stuff etc..

Then one in Australia/Southeast Asia could deal with bush fire fighting (apparently there is a difference), offshore oil-rigs, mustering etc.

An American conference could cover ENG, EMS, NVG, Police work etc.

Naturally there would be some common topics and speakers at each event.

.....or am I getting ahead of things too soon ??


Good luck with this.

Link to comment
Share on other sites



I am planning on visiting both locations on the way back from Geneva to see which location works the best. If anyone has any ideas on hotels or meeting facilities in both places then please post them here or PM me.




Heli Ops

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Heli Ops;


Being an ex contracting officer, I beleive you could go about this another way


1. The location is irrelevant as most of the time will be spent in the classroom.


2. There are other places in Alberta (Kaninaskus) and BC, Kelowna and Pinticton to name a few.


3. We have a system in Canada called the "Merx" system and is a place for people to get bids from companies willing to provide their product on a competitive basis.


4. Have somebody submit a scope of requirement to one of the companies in Canada that is on the "Merx" network to get replies.


5. Do not go for lowest price, like the feds, but best all around value.


6. Put in a cancellation clause with at least 45 days prior notice at no cost, as the hotels will have no cost at that time of the year. The hotels will only be providing meals, accomodations and a venue. This already part of the infrastructure, wether used or not.


7. As most of the operators are situated in AB and BC, restrict the bidding to hotels from those area's.


Food for thought, IMHO.


Cheers, Don

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...
1. The location is irrelevant as most of the time will be spent in the classroom.

Can this be true?


I was planning on coming because I live pretty close to Whistler (just across the Strait of Georgia) and can easily get to Banff... but most of the time in the classroom? I was hoping that most of the time would be spent in the pub swapping stories, and every now and then we'd head to a seminar.


Of course I'm speaking tongue in cheek, but I really do want to meet, greet, network and swap tales with guys from the industry first... and learn a lot more second.


Not to denigrate any of the professional activities... I'm just stating what I think are my priorities (I'm never sure until the morning)... :boff:




P.S. Matador, if you're out there, are you coming?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This topic is now closed to further replies.

  • Create New...