Planning an outdoor event has never been a walk in the park. Add to that, COVID-19 has made matters more complicated and stressful. If you’re planning an outdoor event, you’ll need to be mindful of the new regulations and guidelines related to outdoor gatherings based on COVD-19 preventive SOPs. For example, you’ll need to manage activities while keeping social distancing in mind.
Following these guidelines with added precautions can help stop the spread of the disease, and turn your outdoor event into a success. In a scenario where you’re hosting an outdoor event, you’ll have to consider many aspects such as your budget, choice of venue, setting event dates and deadlines, managing sponsorships, and creating backup plans if things go south.
So, let us get started with planning an outdoor event that will give you enough safety that you can wow your attendees. The following cost-effective tips will help you host a memorable event.
When hosting an outdoor event, it is essential to keep revisiting your budget. It does not mean that you are willing to compromise on the quality of the event, but you’ll know that there are certain areas where you can cut costs, leaving room for you to use that money in other areas. You must focus on your goal, host a remarkable event and not empty your pockets.
Setting and Following Guidelines
Ensuring that the participants follow the COVID-19 rules and regulations is crucial. You certainly do not want your event to be the next epicenter of the virus. Consider opting for an event fencing hire solution for your outdoor event parameters. With this solution, you can simultaneously control the crowd and ensure social distancing.
You should also distribute brochures and flyers to inform the attendees of the COVID-19 safety measures and protocols. You can set pre-event SOPs such as checking all of the guests for fever and their vaccination cards by having dedicated stations at the entrance. You can also guide them to hand-washing stations before stepping into the line.
Choosing the Perfect Venue
Every event has a different layout based on the intent, so there are various venues for other outdoor events. However, a concert and a scavenger hunt may be best for outdoor events, yet they are entirely different activities. Depending on your needs and budget, try to look up event venues while keeping the intent of the event in mind. After all, paying for the venue will take up a large chunk of your budget. Thus, before scouring the internet for venues, be sure to have all the details related to the outdoor event you’re planning. These details may be the expected headcount, spacing requirements, logistical support, etc.
Get Multiple Quotes
Though this point is closely related to the choice of venue, it is also applicable to other expenses on your list. It would be best if you tried to get the best possible deal. This process is similar to shopping. You start with conducting market research (asking your friends and family where you can get the best deals) – and then compile the deals to compare the price and the package.
On a side note, once you’ve found a vendor or a supplier that’s giving the best deals, try to develop a mutually beneficial relationship for future events. Building this relationship can help you get better deals, especially for bulk orders.
Be Flexible and Follow Deadlines
It’s crucial to know what dates of the event you can move and what you can’t if you’re working on minimizing the cost of the event. They can assist you in unlocking lower rates by settling for off-peak days, times, or seasons. It can be your golden ticket to getting your desired venue at your desired price. Monitoring and scanning for venue locations on social media marketing can help you avoid booking on or closer to the holiday date.
Finding the right sponsors can help you decrease your costs immensely. For instance, in-kind sponsors who will donate goods and services in exchange for a branding space to advertise themselves. Such sponsorships can help you adjust your spending budget to make this event an immense success.
Another type of event sponsorship is through cash sponsors. Though, it is tougher to find such sponsors in comparison to in-kind sponsors as the latter type of sponsors seek events as a chance to increase their brand awareness among the general masses.
One major advantage of having in-kind sponsors is that some of them are willing to provide you services in the shape of free volunteers. Volunteers add to the workforce of your event, which means you’ll have to invest your time and incentive in training the volunteers. Ultimately, it will save you a significant amount of money.
Rent Instead of Buying
For an outdoor event, you’ll require several things that are readily available like, a canopy or tent, to protect your guests from the scorching heat or pouring rain. Similarly, as the outdoor event space increases, you may also need an advanced sound system for attendees to pay attention where needed. Such equipment is readily available for rent by event catering services, so you avoid spending tons of money buying these things when they’re only going to be used for one or two events. However, if you feel that specific equipment is high in demand, it would be cheaper if you purchase it instead of renting it out for that day. Multiple businesses rent out equipment for corporate indoor and outdoor events.
Having a Contingency Plan
An outdoor event can go either well or be a total train wreck, but it’s rarely ever forgettable. Sometimes the challenges in executing an outdoor event can be out of your control, for instance, heavy rain. You knew the forecast, and you set the dates of the event accordingly but you don’t have control over how the winds blow.
Therefore, it’s always best to have a contingency plan. Think outside of the box. You can’t be prepared for everything, but it helps to look out for details that can nose-dive your event into a complete disaster.
COVID-19 brings some drastic changes into our ‘new normal’ life’. Life, as we know before the pandemic may never come back to us. Thus we must try to adapt to the current norms set by health regulators and policymakers. With social distancing becoming a norm, hosting an outdoor event is still a great way to pull an audience and pull off a successful event. Planning, researching, strategizing can still execute a successful event even under a tight budget.
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