How to Charge for Your Event Planning Service

Introduction Are you an event planner struggling to determine the best way to charge for your services? Pricing can be a daunting task, but fear not! In this article, we will explore the different options...


Are you an event planner struggling to determine the best way to charge for your services? Pricing can be a daunting task, but fear not! In this article, we will explore the different options available to you and help you make an informed decision. Whether you are a new planner or have years of experience, we've got you covered. So let's dive right in!

Hourly Rate

One common method of charging for event planning services is by setting an hourly rate. Consider your worth and experience when deciding on a rate. For new planners, a rate of around $25 per hour is reasonable, while top event planners with impressive portfolios can charge upwards of $100 per hour. Keep in mind the inflation and cost of living in your area when adjusting your rate. Additionally, corporate events generally warrant a higher rate than social events.

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Flat Fee

Charging a flat fee is the preferred and most common billing method in the event planning industry. It eliminates surprises for both you and your client, allowing you to focus on delivering an exceptional event. When quoting a flat fee, it is typical to include a fee for your services and a percentage based on total vendor fees. A standard vendor commission percentage falls between 10-15%.

For virtual events, which have become more prevalent due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it is advisable to have a separate flat fee structure. However, if you primarily specialize in traditional, in-person events, one flat fee structure will suffice. To protect yourself financially, it is recommended to receive a 50% deposit upfront and the remaining 50% within two weeks of the event. When calculating your flat fee, consider the estimated number of hours, expenses (such as gas and supplies), and build in a buffer of 10-20% in case the scope of the event expands.

Percentage of the Event

Some event planners opt to charge a percentage of the total event budget. This method can be challenging to present to clients, but if done correctly, it can work. Typical percentage amounts range from 15-20% of the event budget, although you can adjust it lower if necessary.

Day-of Coordination

At some point in your career, you may be asked to provide day-of coordination services. This typically applies to weddings but can also extend to other special events. As a day-of coordinator, you come into the picture after the client has chosen their vendors and work directly with them to ensure a smooth event. You can charge either an hourly rate or a flat fee for day-of coordination.

Remember to consider the preparation time required, which can take at least a month and involve an additional 10-20 hours of work. Day-of coordination services have gained popularity due to the economic slowdown. So, even if you don't expect to offer this service, be prepared for clients to inquire about it.

Vendor Commission

Although less popular in recent years, some planners choose to take a commission from the vendors they hire rather than charging client fees. However, this method is not recommended as it can lead to conflicts of interest and questions about vendor selection. Transparency with clients is vital, and it is better to choose one of the previous options for your billing structure.


Now that you have learned about the various ways to charge for your event planning services, you can make an informed decision based on your expertise and circumstances. Remember to monitor your total overhead costs and incorporate them into your pricing. And always aim for transparency and clear communication with your clients. We hope this article has provided valuable insights and helps you navigate the world of event planning pricing with confidence.

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