Do More With Less – Tips to Save Costs on Your Next Meeting
If you’re in the meeting planning business, you’re always on the hunt for savvy ways to cut corners, while maintaining the creative, interactive and engaging elements of your program. Even a small program can include big elements if you use a few of these tips to manage your spend. Here are some creative ways to do more with less!
- Choose your locations and dates wisely by looking for off-season rates and secondary destinations, while remaining flexible with travel plans.
- Take advantage of volume discount buying power DMCS offer with preferred vendors by booking multiple meetings with a property at the same time.
- Communicate with attendees electronically to save on print costs. Being environmentally friendly by using less paper is always positive.
- Determine the necessary inclusions ahead of time and the concessions you are willing to eliminate during your negotiating period to ensure items most important to your group remain in the program components.
Michelle Crosby, CMP of AlliedPRA Dallas embraces these tips below for décor budgets.
- Lighting – Altering the look of a ballroom with strategic lighting placement is a huge cost savings. Use LED perimeter lighting to wash walls with a different color each day, or each meal, changes the look and feel of a space without adding the expense of electricity, linens, centerpieces, etc. Lighting can also be used to enhance buffet décor from the hotel to add depth and dimension or project a company logo onto blank walls, floors, entry ways, etc.
- Multi-Day Centerpieces – for those clients that want to spruce up their banquet rounds during meals AlliedPRA Dallas recommends utilizing a centerpiece with heartier florals, succulents that need little to no water, or non-floral arrangements. This way, they can used for multiple days thus saving on daily labor, delivery, and rental charges.
- CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) – Any time there is an opportunity to secure centerpieces or host a group activity that can later be donated to a local charitable organization is an automatic tax write off for the client! The AlliedPRA Dallas team helps coordinate the delivery of said items (let’s say floral centerpieces to a local senior center) and provide a tax form in return to the client for their file! It’s a win-win for everyone involved!
- Some other ideas include requiring free use of hotel linens and buffet décor and reusing table florals at meals, table draping and other decorating materials through the entire meeting.
Kate Christensen, CMP, DMCP of AlliedPRA Arizona shares some of her favorite ways to stretch a budget.
- One of AlliedPRA Arizona’s favorite catering tips is to speak with the catering company to determine the most popular menus. Since caterers purchase a lot of the same items time over time, the AlliedPRA Arizona team always checks to see if the team can save clients’ money by “ganging” menu items with others. This trick cuts costs, saves culinary time and creates efficiencies for all, as well as a spectacular meal with unique and specific client desired décor.
- Another service AlliedPRA Arizona embraces is closely monitoring transportation timeframes for clients. By focusing on the motor coaches that are “expiring” within their paid for 4 hour time block and release those first, the Arizona team saves clients what could be an expensive transportation bill at the end of the night.
- Other tips include inquiring about complimentary VIP and staff airport transfers, booking in groups, rather than individual transportation requirements when possible and consider keeping some activities on site to minimize transportation costs.
Planning a program now? Click Here and let our team work with you to do more with less for your next event!