8 Questions to Ask a Hotel When Planning an Event – Long Before the Site Visit

Identifying the venue that best suits your event or meeting needs can be a daunting task. The perfect location will do more than merely support your program’s operational needs; it will help facilitate your objectives and influence attendee satisfaction.

By personalizing packages, offering cost-efficient options and proactively catering to attendees, reports show that planners are playing an increasingly substantial role in the $117 billion-a-year meetings and events industry.

As the venue landscape matures, it is more important than ever for planners to differentiate venues in a more strategic way than they have in the past. It’s no longer enough for a venue to merely accommodate an attendee number; they need to add value to the program by identifying rooms that are most effective for learning, recommending schedules that benefit objectives, and providing exceptional service to both the planning team and the attendees.

Here are 8 questions to ask a hotel when planning an event (long before the site visit):

1. What’s our timeline?

Are you giving the venue enough lead time? Remember, properties need time to prepare their teams, in order to deliver a customized site visit. If you want the opportunity to see the space with your room-set, make sure you reach out to the venues you’re interested in as early as possible.

2. Can you send me to-scale floor plans?

If you want to envision your event as early as possible, ask properties to send you accurate floor plans, with room set options as early as possible. Accuracy is key, if properties are providing inaccurate floor plans they’re setting themselves up for disappointment once you realize your event just won’t fit.

3. Can you accommodate my F&B needs?

Share as much detail about your food and beverage requirements. If a property can’t satisfy the specific food requirements for an event, then theirs no point in going on the site visit in the first place.

4. Can my A/V provider come along on the site visit?

This one is super important, bring your A/V provider to the site visit. A/V experts are better at spotting any problems that could arise, or opportunities for a unique A/V experience, long before the event.

5. How can we edit the room layout?

With Social Tables, you can design floor plans, hand it off to the venue, and quickly make edits and changes. This  gives planners the opportunity to agree on a room-set with the venue, long before the site visit even takes place.

6. “How can I help you?”

Surveyed planners indicated that they’re not always dealing with the most knowledgeable people at the property. Planners are tired of hearing “Let me get back to you on that”. Anticipate the questions you’ll have on a site visit and ensure the venue will have answers when you arrive.

7. What problems can we get ahead of?

Properties don’t all make the effort to learn the specifics of your event. Share the right details, so they can ask the right questions. Will you need a wheelchair accessible floor plan? Will the space work for small kids? If you want the best possible site visit, start by offering specific information.

8. Will the venue be set or empty during the site visit?

You won’t always have a ton of options when it comes to dates and times for a site visit. Decided if you want to see your event space empty, or during an actual event and try schedule a visit based on that criteria.

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The Site Visit Revisited