Everyone has a budget for their event and, often, it's not as much as is needed for the event that is required. So, what is the best way to haggle to get the best price?
First of all, find out where the land lies and be realistic. Ask for prices and pick an event which is slightly under your budget. Haggle up and not down. What this means is that you should pick a package below your budget and then ask what can be done if you spend a little more. You'll find that people will add more than the value of the extra money more often than if you approach the negotiation from the other side.
The other side means taking a package and then beating the price down. A good example is a barbecue. If the price is £10 per person and you ask what can be done for an extra £5 then you can have higher expectations. If the price is £20 per person and you ask for a £5 per person discount then you will be the client who cut the budget. Anything that doesn't meet your expectations after that will be attributed to the cutting of the budget, rather than the supplier's failure to meet expectations.
Another technique is to negotiate on facility fees. For example, some venues charge a room hire fee and this is where the negotiation should take place rather than on the cost of the menu. Room hire fees are often £500 or even more. This can be negotiated to half of this amount and, in some of the less busy months of the year, taken out completely. The key is to bear the date in mind and, also, to ask the venue which days are their busiest at the start of the conversation. Surprisingly Fridays are currently not generally as busy as Thursdays with corporate clients. It seems that Fridays have been successfully reclaimed by workers as their personal social time but it's still acceptable to give the occasional other weekday over to works functions.
You need to book your events early. Nothing will make a venue or supplier offer better rates than an empty diary. In recent years there has been a trend to book events with 2 weeks' lead time or even less. Sometimes you can get a good rate at the last minute, but if you have a lot of very specific requirements then you may struggle. Last minute bookings invariably mean compromise.
If this all seems like a lot of trouble to go to then there is another way. We offer a free venue finding service provided, obviously, that you book an activity through us. We will always negotiate the best rate for you and often our relationship with a venue will really help you to make savings. Call us to discuss your event.