How to Plan a Private Event: 11 Things to Consider

You're excited about organizing a private event, but you may be unsure where to start. Don't worry, I've got you covered! In this article, we'll explore the key factors you need to consider when planning...

You're excited about organizing a private event, but you may be unsure where to start. Don't worry, I've got you covered! In this article, we'll explore the key factors you need to consider when planning your special occasion. From determining the aim of your event to finding the perfect venue, we'll cover it all. So, let's get started!

1. What kind of event is it?

To begin your event planning journey, ask yourself: What kind of event am I organizing? Whether it's a corporate networking dinner or a family get-together, understanding the nature of your event is crucial. Consider the following sub-questions:

  • Who will be attending?
  • Is it a business or leisure event?
  • Will there be entertainment?
  • Do you need technical equipment?
  • What kind of food do you envision?

By answering these questions, you'll have a clear idea of the direction to take when planning your private event.

2. Where will the event be?

Once you've determined the purpose and theme of your event, it's time to choose the perfect venue. Consider whether you want to host your event in the city or countryside, indoors or outdoors. Here are some points to keep in mind while selecting a venue:

  • Does the venue match the theme of your event?
  • Will your guests appreciate a change of scenery?
  • Is the venue easily accessible to your guests?
  • Can you ensure complete privacy?
  • What is the cost involved?

Remember, the right venue sets the tone and ambiance for your event. You can also refer to DesignMyNight for a list of great private hire spaces.

3. When will the event take place?

While you may have a rough date in mind, it's essential to check the venue's availability for that specific date. Consider the season as well. If you're planning a Christmas party, booking the venue well in advance is crucial. Stay informed about bank holidays and festive seasons to avoid any last-minute surprises.

4. What is your budget?

Budgeting for an event can be challenging, but with careful planning, it's manageable. Estimate the number of attendees and create a list of best- and worst-case scenarios. Determine who is responsible for the expenses, whether it's personal or corporate. Read our guide on how to prepare and manage your event budget to get started.

5. Venue hire or minimum spend?

When selecting a venue and planning your budget, consider whether you will be paying for the space outright or guaranteeing a minimum spend. Venue hire involves a flat rate for space, food, and drinks. On the other hand, minimum spend means space is free if your guests meet a certain spending threshold. Some venues may offer a lower venue hire cost, with additional charges for food and drinks. Take into account the number of guests, your budget, and negotiate if possible.

6. How private should the event be?

Privacy is an important aspect to consider based on the purpose and attendees of your event. If you're hosting a corporate meeting or have VIP guests, ensuring maximum privacy is crucial. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is the event space separate from the rest of the venue?
  • Will it provide soundproofing for sensitive conversations?
  • Does the venue offer a private entrance?
  • Will there be separate toilet access for your guests?

These considerations will help you choose a venue that caters to your privacy needs.

How private should the event be? Caption: How private should the event be?

7. Who will provide the food?

Deciding who will cater your event depends on your agreement with the venue. If you've opted for dry hire, you'll need to hire a third-party catering company. Keep in mind that catering costs can add up, so compare prices to see if it's more cost-effective to get food from the venue itself. Check out some of the top catering companies in the UK for reliable solutions.

8. How will the food be served?

Food and drinks play a crucial role in any event. Consider the practical aspects of serving food when planning your private event. Will you be serving drinks and canapés, setting up a buffet, or arranging a three-course meal? Your choice will depend on the formality of the event and the capabilities of the venue.

Think about what you will serve... and how. Caption: Think about what you will serve... and how.

9. What should the menu be?

Once you've determined the serving style, it's important to consider the actual menu. Unless you have a buffet, take into account your guests' preferences and dietary requirements. Ensure that your menu includes options suitable for various dietary needs, such as halal, kosher, vegan, vegetarian, and allergies. Encourage guests to inform you of any special requirements when RSVPing and check with the venue and catering company in advance.

10. Will there be entertainment?

Depending on the type of event, you may want to incorporate entertainment into your plans. From live music bands for weddings and birthday parties to comedians or industry speakers for corporate events, entertainment adds an extra touch of excitement. Explore the entertainment agency directory for ideas on how to make your private event unforgettable.

11. Do you need technical equipment?

If your event includes entertainers or speakers, you'll likely require technical equipment. Check if the venue offers microphones, a sound system, lighting, a stage, IT equipment, or a projector. If not, you may need to contact an AV firm to hire the necessary equipment.

Feeling more prepared?

By now, you should have a good understanding of what it takes to plan a successful private event. All that's left to do is to execute your plan and make your event a memorable experience. Stay tuned to our blog for more valuable tips and insights to ensure your event's success. Happy planning!