Hotels can be wonderful places to hold an event – many are designed to meet every conceivable guest need, and come with a bevy of resources and staff. However, as with any venue, thorough planning with an eye on costs is necessary. Knowing what to look for before you sign that contract, and knowing what is reasonable to ask, can help put many concerns to rest – and leave you free to focus on running a fantastic event!
- Event Room Rental Fee: Don’t always assume that you need to pay a rental fee! Many times this can be waived or adjusted with food and beverage minimums, as well as the timing of events.
- Food and Beverages: Don’t be afraid to ask for discounts! Always ask about available packages (don’t forget to break these down to ensure that they really provide value). If you have an all day meeting, don’t pay by beverage consumption, as you will be charged several times throughout the day for gallons of wasted coffee, decaf and hot water. Ask for an all day beverage break as this price will generally reduce your costs by a third.
- Events with Sleeping Rooms: If your date is flexible, ask if there are any “need dates” promotions, as these can often result in lower room rates along with food, beverage and Audio-Visual (A/V) discounts.
- Parking: Especially when the hotel is a city property, parking is a top concern. Ask for a reduced rate for all attendees, as many times this rate is lowered by $8 to $10 per car per day
- Internet: For sleeping rooms, have the lowest band width put into the rate. For meeting space, ask to have the fee waived; if the hotel is not willing to do that, then only pay a one-time fee rather than per day/per connection