How to Select the Perfect Venue for Your Next Big Event

You have a theme,  determined the entertainment, narrowed down the guest list, and booked the caterers – all that’s left is the venue! After all, what’s an event without the perfect venue?

 

Location, ambience, and decor speak volumes about your event. These elements all play a vital role in your guest experience. However, aside from looking great and setting the mood for your guests, there are several factors to consider when selecting the perfect venue for your event.

 

Accessibility & Location

Location is perhaps one of the most important considerations when selecting a venue for your big event. Regardless of the purpose of your event, where it’s held may be an important factor for guests. Your guests are less likely to attend if they have to travel an hour to and from the selected venue.

 

Consider centrally located areas for your event. Be sure to think about parking and accessibility to public transportation. A convenient and accessible location is always a win!

 

Room Capacity & Layout

Before you select a venue, estimate the number of attendees you expect. The last thing you want is to pack  guests in like crammed sardines. What is the capacity of your potential venue? This is very important because you can’t comfortably fit 250 people into a room with a 200-person capacity. Additionally, your venue may have specific safety and fire codes to meet.

 

Once you have an rough calculation of guest attendance, decide on the layout of your event. Are you planning an intimate dinner, a banquet, or a corporate seminar? What areas will be high traffic at the event? Will there be a registration or guest book to sign? Where will the entertainment be? For corporate events, will you have a keynote speaker – do you require a stage, or a spot to place a rented stage? Will you need a demo area?

 

Different events may result in smaller or larger capacities for guests. Knowing the type of event and potential flow will also help you estimate the size of your preferred venue.

 

The Perks

Typically the cost associated with booking your venue will take up most of your planning budget. Be sure to get the most bang for your buck with plenty of venue perks. Check with potential venues ahead of time and whether they offer any of the following perks:

 

  • Deals which include multimedia setups or AV capabilities
  • Onsite food and beverage options
  • Accessible parking or valet parking (if this is not the case, is the venue within walking distance of parking lots or public transportation)
  • Tables, chairs, linens
  • Setup and cleanup crews

 

Acoustics

Have you ever attended an event or corporate seminar that was dreadfully loud? When a venue is too loud, it may be difficult for your guests to hear one another. On the other hand, when your guests can’t be heard, they may speak louder and strain their voices.

 

While a low ceiling can make a venue feel cozy, it will make your event louder when the room is filled up. Alternatively, a large warehouse-style venue can result in troublesome echoes.

 

Cost and Flexibility on Event Date

At the end of the day, you can only afford a venue within your price range. If your schedule permits, consider flexibility on the event date. Flexibility on your event date may offer additional wiggle room to negotiate venue pricing.

 

For example, a venue may have open dates on the calendar you may not have initially considered. By providing 2-3 date options, you are more likely to receive discounted pricing.

 

As you can see, there’s a lot to consider when selecting your event’s venue. However, if you take the above into consideration as you research, you’ll find the perfect venue for your event!