Tis’ the season for planning your company’s holiday party. When planning any event, there is a laundry list of items to consider and that list may get even longer when you are planning something for your co-workers or corporate clients. One very important task on your planning to do list will be choosing a venue. We’ve got some tips and ideas that may help make this decisions a little less stressful. 

You will first want to narrow down your venue options to a short list of types of places that would work well for your event. If you need a little help, take a look at this post that includes the ABC’s of venue selection. It’s a great resource for really honing in on what style venue would make the most sense as the backdrop for the event.

Traditional venue options include hotels, restaurants, country clubs and rentable event spaces. Of course there are other places you could also hold your holiday event – it really just depends on your needs. There is also a new trend developing with corporate event venues. It seems that many corporations are hosting their events on local college campuses. Several companies have been utilizing college and university conference centers and facilities to host their meetings and events. Often times, these locations have more reasonable rates than hotels or banquet halls which make them a more affordable venue option. In turn, schools use these facility rentals as another source of funding. If you are planning a corporate holiday event and have a local campus nearby, you may consider looking into their venue options.

If you are on a tight budget – you may have to get creative when selecting a venue. For starters, you may want to be flexible with your day and time. Some venues may have certain rental days that tend to be less expensive than others due to the nature of their business. You should always ask about any discounts available. The time of day that you are hosting the event can also be a factor when it comes to venue expense. If you want to host your holiday event during prime time hours – chances are you will pay more for that. Consider hosting an afternoon event, you may have more leeway when negotiating price. Also remember that the weeks leading up to the holidays will likely be more expensive and book quickly, so you should keep that in mind during your planning.

Entertainment is a must-have on many corporate event planners checklists. If you do plan on including entertainment, you will want to be sure that the venue select will be able to accommodate the entertainer you are hiring. For example, if you will have a band or DJ, you will have to make sure that the venue allows live music, and see what kind of set-up they can offer a band. Soloists and variety entertainers will likely require slightly less from a venue, but you should still discuss your exact plans with the venue.

Finding the right venue can be time consuming, but it is extremely important as it will help set the tone for the entire event. Just make a list of your needs, start your search, (and follow our helpful tips). You will find the perfect spot for your corporate holiday party in no time!

What advice do you have for selecting a venue for a corporate holiday party? Share your expertise in the comments below.