Here’s Exactly How to Book a Venue
One of the most important aspects of planning an event is choosing the right space for it. The location can absolutely be the difference between a memorable and forgettable event, whether it’s a wedding, a meeting, a birthday party, a baby shower, or a team-building activity. That’s why it’s important to know exactly what steps to take when booking a venue, along with everything you need to take into account when you’re booking it. Once you have this basic info, you’ll realize that — as important and perhaps intimidating as it is — booking a venue isn’t all that challenging with the right info and resources. For our guide on how to book a venue, we’ve boiled this process down to its most important components, so read on!
1. Establish your requirements
Before you can begin searching for a venue, you’ve got to know what you’re looking for. This means having some basic elements of event planning ironed out, including:
This is a necessity. How much can you afford to spend on renting a venue?
Estimated number of attendees
This can be a range, if you’re early in the planning process. Another crucial aspect of this first stage of how to book a venue — how much space will you need for your guests?
The general location of the event
Obviously you won’t know exactly where it’s going to be until you’ve chosen your venue, but you should almost certainly know what city you’ll pick. After all, having a specific neighborhood in mind can be helpful, too, when narrowing down your selection. Make sure that the location is reasonably accessible for most of the people who will be in attendance. If it’s something like a conference, it should definitely be centrally located to maximize attendance. For smaller events, ensure that transportation to your chosen area won’t be a huge hurdle for guests.
Your goals for the event
This isn’t an absolute necessity, but if you have at least a few specific goals for your event in mind that you’re prioritizing, you can choose your venue based in part on how well it will help you achieve those goals.
Technical requirements/necessary amenities
Establish enough of an outline of your agenda and/or event activities to have a sense of what logistical elements your chosen venue needs to offer. Will you be having speakers come to talk at a large seminar? Or will you be hiring a live band for your wedding? Either way, you need to know what A/V capabilities will be required for your chosen venue.
Likewise, maybe you’ll want to have guests take outdoor photos — this way, you’ll know that the space you choose will need to have an outdoor area of some kind. And so on. This isn’t absolute, as you will most likely also end up planning elements of your agenda and activities based on what the space has to offer.
2. Search the right database
Using Peerspace is the most efficient, effective way to locate the right venue for your event. Peerspace is the most extensive marketplace for event spaces on the internet (it’s like Airbnb, but for event spaces). You’ll find thousands of venues of all different kinds — large and small, rustic and formal, affordable and lavish — among the listings. And hundreds of cities throughout the US have venues listed on Peerspace.
On Peerspace, you can rent out sumptuous mansions, ultra-cool lofts, cozy cottages, thrilling nightclubs, and more. Not only does Peerspace have an enormous selection of top-notch options, the site is set up so that it’s incredibly easy to find exactly what you’re looking for and book a unique event venue with a local host.
All you have to do from their homepage is select the type of event you’re planning, enter the city you’re searching in, and click “search.” Then you can scroll through potentially thousands of options, zoom into a particular area of the map of your city, or save time by filtering your search with specific parameters: number of attendees, price per hour, type of space, and more. With Peerspace, this step in the process of how to book a venue is a total breeze.
3. Do a little more digging
Once you’ve found at least a few potential event venues that look promising, it’s time to investigate the listings a bit further to make sure they’re a good fit. When you click on a Peerspace listing, you’ll see high-resolution photos of the space, a detailed description of everything it has to offer, and honest reviews from people who have used that venue in the past. These are where you’ll get the most valuable info — what the space is really like, beyond the listing title.
4. Make the final call — book the venue
Here’s the final, most important step of how to book a venue! If possible, message the hosts to ask if you can visit your favorite venue options — the only real way to judge an event venue is to see it in person. Before making the final call, consider the following factors, in addition to the parameters you’ve already established in Step 1:
If many of your guests are likely to be driving, will they have a place to park? If not, this can make transportation difficult.
What does the floor plan look like? How will the number of guests that you’re planning for move through the space? How can you set up tables?
You must ensure that any disabled attendees will be able to access every aspect of your event.
If either you or the venue has to cancel at the last minute, how will that work? Make sure you’ve established that.
When you’re making the final call, definitely trust your gut about which space will work best. Does the feel of the space suit the kind of event you’re planning to hold there?