With many companies downsizing, planning a meeting can fall to a staff member with little to no experience in event planning. To help we have created a short list of important of ‘Things To Ask Your Venue’.

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1. Availability

Is the venue available on your desired dates and if not, can you be flexible with your dates to get the perfect venue for your event? It sounds almost overly simplistic, but knowing your ideal date and how flexible your timeline is will be imperative to booking your venue. Popular locations may book up in advance, and if you’re considering a weekend seminar, you may have to contend with wedding bookings as well. The sooner you can lock down your date, the easier it will be to secure your venue.

2. What is the capacity?

Ensure your chosen venue can accommodate your delegate number comfortably for the set up you require. For example: do you want classroom style, banquet or boardroom. You don’t want your guests to feel crowded or overly spread out throughout your event, so knowing your selected venue’s max capacity is another must. From there you can organize around how many people plan to attend and design your setup accordingly.

3. What is the venue rental fee?

Beyond meeting your budget, you’ll want to find out if the base fee is negotiable if you meet other spending minimums. For example, are you able to get a venue discount if you spend a certain amount on food & beverage?

4. Food Service

What menus are available to you? Do they fit with your budget? Can you customize menus to fit your event theme? As we all know, food is an important part of every event, and you’ll want to make sure your location can accommodate to any dietary needs as well as your budget. As with above, it’s always beneficial to ask if there are any discounts or packages available.

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5. Beverage Service

What beverage service do you require? Depending on your event and the time of day do you need tea and coffee, water or juices, welcome drink or a full bar service? Is this available at your venue? No one wants thirsty attendees in the crowd!

6. AV Compatibility

What AV equipment is available? Is it in-house or do they use an outside vendor? What is the cost of each item you require? Does this fit with your budget? If you’re speaking to a large crowd, you’ll likely need the use of a microphone, and if your event includes any visuals, making sure the equipment provided (if any) is compatible with the platform you use. Finding out the day of an event that your Mac or PC doesn’t connect with the in-house system is a source of unnecessary stress. Avoid this potential hiccup by checking your compatibility early on!

7. Payment Policy

Depending on your event and where your budget is coming is from, you may want to ask about the payment and refund policy. While no one plans on having to back out of an event last minute, it’s best to have a safeguard in place in case the “unexpected” happens on either side of the table. That way no one is left scrambling after an unfortunate turn of events, and you can rest easy knowing that your investment is secure.

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8. Is their ample parking for your delegates?

You’ll need to determine how your guests will be arriving to the venue and how much parking is needed. Address this early on with your location to avoid any confusion the day of.

9. Is the venue wheelchair accessible?

The importance behind this goes without saying. Always check ahead to make sure everyone’s needs are accommodated.

10. Is the venue air conditioned?

No one wants to be stuck in a sweltering room. If you’re booking an event during the hotter months, be sure to keep temperature in mind.

With these tips in mind, you’re well on your way to planning a successful conference. Cornerstone Theatre offers a variety of options for professionals wishing to host a memorable event. Contact us today and let us help you make sure your next event is stress-free from