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How To Choose The Best Venue For Your Event

There are many decisions to make when you are choosing your event venue and the location is the one decision that will have the largest impact on your event. Many things rely on the location itself such as the date of the event, the catering options, the speakers being able to attend the event and also the attendee experience. 

We would always advise to start looking for a venue as soon as you can, the earlier the better. When choosing your event venue you need to know your budget, estimated event size and space requirements. Try to book your event venue, eight months prior to the event so this gives you plenty of time to plan. 

Additional items to consider when choosing your event venue 

Parking 

A venue with a lot of parking is always a bonus but that is not always the case these days. Having parking nearby that attendees can access can help overcome this problem. Alternatively, having great access to public transport is another solution  and attendees can travel by train or bus. 

Capacity and Minimums 

Capacity of the venue is important and this will be essential when choosing your event venue. Also think about room capacity especially if you are thinking about holding breakout sessions or a number of speakers at the same time. 

Minimums refer to food and beverage because they usually set a minimum food and beverage spending amount. Remember that you can use this for negotiating other add-ons. If, for example, you estimate spending much more on food and beverage than the minimum then you can negotiate whether they can provide another service for fee, e.g. WiFi. 

Flexibility 

We would advise that you get an official contract in place for your event as you do not want to change your venue at the last minute. Flexible contracts are preferred in these current times (post-pandemic) in case your event has to be cancelled or postponed due to unforeseen factors. 

Services 

Does your venue offering in-house catering? Do they include table and chairs in the hire? Do they have AV capabilities? Do they have setup/cleaning staff? You may think that all of these items are automatically included with a venue hire but that is not the case. 

Floor Plan

It is important to get hold of a floor plan at the early stages of planning so that you can see exactly what rooms are available and how to organise the flow of traffic through your event. 

The 3A’s: Ambiance, Acoustics and Accessibility

Depending on what your event is, corporate speaking event or gala dinner, think about the ambiance of the venue. If there is minimal ambiance then you may need to spend more on decorating the venue. Acoustics is also important, think about how the sound travels in the venue, you don’t want people struggling to hear the main speaker. A low ceiling for instance will make the venue seem cozy but it will make it feel louder when it is busy. 

Accessibility is also essential for those with special needs, ensuring they can access the building and its amenities. 

For more advice on choosing your event venue and staffing your event, please get in touch