Conducting a site visit of a confirmed or potential venue is a crucial step in the event planning process, so it’s important to be armed with the right questions.
For those new to events, however, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed during site visits, with so much information to digest in what is often a quick meeting.
To help prepare you for your next site visit, here are some common questions to ask the venue manager, to ensure you’re fully prepared to host a knock-out event, meeting or conference:
1: Can I use external suppliers?
It’s important to find out if the venue has preferred suppliers or caterers that you are required to work with. If you are permitted to use external suppliers, be sure to find out if there are any fees to do so.
2: What is the capacity for my style of event?
Find out the maximum capacities for each of the spaces at the venue, and ensure you ask specifically about the style and layout you’re aiming for. E.g. What is the capacity for a banquet-style set up?
3: Is the venue accessible for all delegates?
Ensure the venue has wheelchair access and elevators, and find out where they are located throughout the venue.
4: When can we bump in and bump out?
Find out what times you can set up and pack down your event (often referred to as bump in and bump out) and if there are any major restrictions that may affect the timing of your event.
5: What additional costs are involved?
This one is simple – ask about all costs or risk being handed a bill full of hidden fees.
6: Where are the bathrooms, cloakroom and other facilities located?
Inspect where facilities like bathrooms, cloakrooms, smoking areas and the organiser’s office are located to ensure you are fully prepared to inform delegates and event staff.
7: Are there any restrictions I should know about?
This could be anything from noise restrictions, through to restrictions on plastic waste, balloons and other decorations.
8: What food and beverage packages do you offer?
Find out what types of catering the venue provides, from canapés and buffets to live cooking stations. And be sure to ask whether your delegates’ dietary requirements can be accommodated.
9: What other groups/events are taking place at the same time as my event?
Ask if there are any events taking place at the venue that might impact yours.
10: What are the closest accommodation options?
If you’re guests are travelling to your event, be sure to ask the venue for their accommodation suggestions and if they have affiliations with any hotels for possible discounted rates.
Do you have any other must-ask questions on a site visit? Be sure to share them in the comments below!