Sourcing a venue for an event seems straightforward enough, but how can you make sure you get the best deals and maximise your budget? Below are 5 top money saving tips to help you get more for your money.
1) Select cheaper days of the week
Typically Tuesday to Thursday are the busiest days for venues so if you are flexible on dates then look at Mondays and Fridays. Availability will be better and venues will be more willing to negotiate on the price on these days.
2) Space-saving layouts will save money
Selecting the right room set up for your event can have a significant impact on the venues available to you and their price as layout determines the size of the room you require. Space saving set ups like theatre style can use up to half the space of a room set up cabaret style. Your requirements may mean you are fixed to a specific set up, but if you do have flexibility then go for a space saving layout.
3) Be realistic on numbers
Being realistic on the number of people attending your event can save you a lot of money. All too often people book their venue for the highest possible denominator only to have much fewer people on the day. Typical attendance figures are 10% lower than the highest possible turnouts so think about booking your venue for this number. What if more people turn up? Plan this with the venue. Tell them what you are doing and ask what impact more people will have, how they will accommodate them and how much extra you will pay for them. Venues may charge extra costs for additional people on the day but in most cases it will pay dividends.
4) Compare venue proposals
Make sure you get enough venue proposals to make an informed decision. Three proposals is quite often seen as enough but we would always encourage people to get at least five. Comparisons can be more easily drawn from this amount and you can use the information from the unsuccessful proposals during negotiation.
5) Think about more than just discounts
When negotiating, don’t just think about getting money off the fees, but consider what extras the venue can throw in. If a venue will not budge on price, ask them to include things like an upgraded lunch and refreshments, AV equipment and even event management support.
You could also consider using an event management company to run your event – they would already have relationships with venues and a strong stance to negotiate on your behalf.