Tips and Tricks for Saving Big on an Event
If you plan on hosting an event this year, you shouldn’t procrastinate on the event planning aspect. According to G2, 48% of event planners start to plan for their next big event at least 6 to 12 months in advance. While you could certainly throw together a small impromptu event, you need to plan ahead for a huge blow-out party.
Events can be expensive, but it’s definitely possible to host the event of the century and still manage to save a few bucks in the process. The following tips can help you not break the bank while hosting your next big event.
Host an outdoor event
The National Association of Landscape Professionals has estimated that approximately 81% of Americans have a lawn. So, why not host an outdoor event? You’d be able to save money on clean-up costs and avoid needing to rearrange your home.
Be creative with feedback
If you’re hosting an event to promote your brand or raise money, you can ask guests to write suggestions on a paper table covering or on colored index cards. You can even have them clip their pledge envelopes on your clothesline.
Cut back on the catering
Instead of offering a full meal, provide coffee and pastries or sandwiches. You may also want to forgo an open bar as between 20 to 25% of your catering bill will go to alcohol if you choose to offer an open bar. If it’s an informal event, you can serve good old hamburgers and hot dogs instead of hiring a caterer.
Compare event planning rates
Contact as many caterers and event planners as possible and compare their rates before deciding which one to hire. You can also turn to friends to get their recommendations.
Choose a convenient venue
If you aren’t hosting the event at your home or office, select a venue that is either close to public transportation or on the outskirts of town, so your guests can avoid rush hour traffic.
Keep your branding generic
Avoid having specifics printed on banners as they won’t be able to be reused. Instead, keep the specifics limited to email invites, and choose generic decorations and banners that can be reused for future events.
Buy food and paper goods in bulk & get cashback
If you’re planning on hosting a good old-fashioned cookout, bulk shopping can save you a lot of money. You can always freeze unused foods and use extra napkins and paper plates for your next barbecue. Another great way to save is to use a cashback site. Sites like rebatefanatic.com usually have substantial discounts at places like Walmart or Kroger.
Host a potluck dinner
Potlucks may be too informal for some company events, but they’re perfect for smaller get-togethers and can save you a lot of money vs hiring a caterer or providing all the food yourself.
Keep entertainment costs down
You can always go with a YouTube playlist rather than a DJ or live band. If you’re hosting a smaller event, you can bring out some card decks and board games or have a pool party. Bingo games with prizes can entertain guests at any sized event.
Serve water at your outdoor event
Bulk cases of bottled water are more affordable than sodas or alcohol. Guests are unlikely to complain if it’s an outdoor event, and the weather is stiflingly hot. Just don’t forget to get a few bags of ice to keep the water cold!
Book off-peak days and times
If you’re planning on going all out with your event, you can save a lot of money by holding the event on off-peak days and booking your speakers and band well in advance.
Events don’t need to be insanely expensive to be a lot of fun. As long as you follow these suggestions, your guests will still have the time of their lives without burning a hole in your pocket.