Booking Venue Space Early – Should I or Should I Not?

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Booking Venue Space Early or Waiting…That is the question

You have called all over town trying to book a space for your event. The pricing is all over the map. From thousands of dollars for a hotel meeting space to Free (as long as your guests buy enough food and drinks from the bar). Now you not only need to reconcile with your budget but the best place is requiring a deposit. A non-refundable deposit at that. Are they crazy? What if the CEO decides to reschedule or not enough attendees sign up? This is not going to be as easy as you thought. When booking venue space, timing is everything.

No, The Venues Aren’t Crazy

Despite the view from your office chair, the venues requiring a deposit may be doing so for a very good reason…cancellations. You are likely familiar with people canceling orders or jobs in your own line of business. For your firm it is no big deal really, the items canceled just go back on a shelf waiting for the next buyer. The job that gets canceled will be replaced with another job shortly. The challenge for companies that rent space for a period of time is the lost opportunity. Unlike the product you put back on a shelf, space is only available for a fixed amount of time. The venue rental company must pay rent, utilities, payroll, and supplies EVERY day, whether space is rented or not. Every hour of rental counts.  Empty meeting or party space is a drain on finances. This makes booking venue space early with a deposit mandatory.

Your Cancellation Is Lost Revenue

When you book a space, most reputable companies will BLOCK that space from availability on their calendar. This prevents double booking, which always means one of two customers is not accommodated and that is bad customer service. Many hotels overbook their rooms just to prevent them from having empty rooms that go unfilled. They overbook and in many cases, they also require a deposit. As you can see, when you think about it, deposits are just there to protect the business from lost revenue and to ensure you get the space you need. Booking venue space early is a risk, but well worth it.   

How We Do It At The Beacon Center

Here at The Beacon Center, we see the results of overbooking a lot. We receive several inquiries a month from folks who lost their rental space due to overbooking by the original company. Most of the time they are desperate and upset. This is what we work to avoid at our venue. It is why we require a deposit when booking venue space. When we promise space for your event we want to be sure you get it. On the flip side, if you fail to rent that same space, we lose the revenue your event would have generated. We would not stay in business very long operating that way.

The prospective renter has two options:

  •  Pay a non-refundable deposit and get a 100% guarantee that your space will be ready when you arrive
  •  Wait until just before your event, with no deposit, and take your chances that space will be available

Both options have pros and cons. At The Beacon Center, we do require a deposit to reserve your date and time. The last thing you want to do is arrange all the details for your event, only to call and find out two days before that you can’t find open space anywhere. So a deposit to hold your space isn’t crazy, it is a good customer service practice and it helps ensure we stay in business to serve you.

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Becky Stonebarger

About Becky Stonebarger

The Beacon Center is the collaborative effort of Husband and Wife team, Gil & Becky Stonebarger. Becky is the mastermind and driving force behind the Center, with Gil supporting her every step of the way. With over 50 yrs of combined experience in Hospitality, Becky & Gil finally realized their dream of an affordable, inspiring space for Businesses and Individuals alike to meet, train or just party. Becky has owned several businesses through the years and is very proud of her degree in Casino Management and is currently working on her Event Planning degree as well. Gil is a US Navy Veteran who has managed hospitality operations across the country for over 30 yrs. They have been happily married for over 30 yrs, have two daughters and two grandchildren.

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