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Ultimate Guide to Budgeting for a Big Event

Your Ultimate Guide to Budgeting for a Big Event

Being responsible for the finances of a large-scale event is an intricate and methodical task. It’s essential that organizers are able to show great attention to detail, be flexible, multitask, and exercise their social skills, including the ability to barter and a deep understanding of the various attributes and requirements that make a large-scale event safe, enjoyable, and within budget.

With the above in mind, the budgeting experts over at Jolly Good Loans have outlined some of the core activities you can undertake to make your big event more cost-effective and ensure it’s a great spectacle for all involved.

Determine Your Costs and Priorities

Noting down all of the potential costs associated with your event and how essential each one of these is, will provide you with a rough idea of how much your big event is going to cost. With any big event where a very large group of people will be gathering in an enclosed or open space, security should be a key concern and priority cost.

Make sure not to simply go with the most affordable security provider, either; choose a trusted company with great reviews to ensure guests are safe and leave feeling looked after, so as not to jeopardize the integrity of future events. Other essentials include, but aren’t limited to:

• The venue; • Any acts, speakers or sportspersons; • Production expenses

• Toilet facilities

Costs that aren’t necessarily essential but will improve the overall quality and success of your big event include, but aren’t limited to:

• Food and bar service • Event promotion • Goodybags

• Wristbands

Consider Your Options and Alternatives

For each of your costs, consider the different options available and explore their suitability for your large event. As you’re planning a large-scale event, it’s important to also give careful thought to the logistics of making it happen, in terms of finding and hiring contractors for the necessary work. If there’s reason to believe a production company won’t be able to deliver the services you expect, go elsewhere.

With the above in mind, you need to be confident you’re choosing not only an affordable option but also the best possible solution for your event – within budget, of course. Some tips for making costs more affordable include:

• Approach local businesses and providers

• Don’t be too optimistic when it comes to attendance; get a venue that you’ll be able to fill to capacity. You can always upscale at the next event, if there is one

• Don’t over-staff the event, but have backup staff readily available if needed

• Opt for free advertising or reduced promotional activity; social media is a valuable tool for event organizers on a tight budget

• Be prepared to barter. If a contractor provides more than one service relative to your event, see if you can get your hands on a block deal

• Outsource where possible and charge businesses for pitch space. If you’re worried about losing money by providing food, allow local food vendors to be present at the event for a charge. If plenty of people end up purchasing refreshments, however, you may regret this missed opportunity for ROI

For promotional purposes, it’s always worth considering investing in multiple channels to guarantee results. Using dedicated ticketing services can help maximize sales at a cost, so it’s worth looking into.

Ensure Expectations Will Be Met

Whatever goals you’ve set yourself for the event, such as a certain number of attendees, a particular ROI, or just generally great feedback on social media, you need to make sure your guest’s expectations are met first, which can be very difficult to do on an overly tight budget.

To ensure expectations are not only met but exceeded, analyze the overall final expenditure of the event and outline where you believe costs can be lowered, removing any unnecessary costs that you feel aren’t going to deliver the amount of value you’d like from that investment.

Have A Plan B

Big events differ from small events in that the budget is much larger, but the potential losses and additional costs are usually greater and more expensive. It’s important to put some of the budget aside for unexpected costs, which can include things like:

• Damaged goods; • Replacement staff; • Venue changes; • Additional refreshments; • Riders

• Transport route redirections

Having a plan B is an integral part of large-scale event budgeting. By doing so, you can drastically reduce the chances of any guests asking for returns on their ticket prices if their expectations weren’t ultimately met.

Remember, if you haven’t planned an event before and would like to maintain a tight budget, it may be worth contacting an event planner and paying for their services to help with some or all of the tasks.

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Blaise Perse

Blaise Perse

Blaise Perse is an accomplished content creator and strategist known for her captivating work at, a premier online platform for event organization and engagement. With a degree in Communications and a minor in Creative Writing from Boston University, Blaise has spent the past six years carving out a niche for herself within the events industry, focusing on creating immersive and engaging content that not only draws attendees in but keeps them talking long after the event has ended.

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