Startup Costs and Pricing an Event and Meeting Planning Business

December 23, 2013 | By | Reply More

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Startup Costs of an Event and Meeting Planning Business

Your startup expenses will depend on the goals you’ve set for your business, the area that your business will serve, and the market you are planning to target. For example, deciding to work from home during your start-up period will be less expensive compared to renting an office downtown. The number of assistants or employees, if any, you will require to help you run your business and whether they will be working for you full time or part time will also affect your start up costs.

Below are some common startup expenses in starting an event and meeting planning business. For exact costing, you may need to check the going rates and prices in your locality:

  • Research and Development costs
  • Licenses and Taxes
  • Fees in professional associations and clubs
  • Office Supplies such as stationeries, etc.
  • Office Equipment
  • Communications equipment (e.g. cell phones, 2-way radios, mobile wifi, etc.)
  • Insurance
  • Rent (if any)
  • Phone/Utility Deposits
  • Payroll for Employees and Helpers
  • Advertising/Promotion Expenses (e.g. brochures, calling cards, website, advertising)
  • Legal Fees & Accounting
  • Insurance (1st Quarter)
  • Miscellaneous

Pricing Your Event and Meeting Planning Services

According to Jill Moran in her book “How to Start a Home-Based Event Planning Business”, there are four ways you can price your event planning services:

Pricing by Percentage.

In this approach, you set your price based on a certain percentage of the total budget (e.g. 15-25 percent) depending on your negotiations with the client.

Pricing by Fee for Services.

You can list down and define the specific tasks that you need to do to successfully run the event and offer a set fee with the option of charging an hourly rate for additional tasks. Using this approach, your price will depend on your experience and qualifications. This type of pricing is best if you feel that the client will need a lot of handholding (hence, more work for you).

Pricing by the Hour.

To ensure that you are compensated for the time you spend on an event, you can set an hourly rate with each action item tied to a cost line. Then fees can be as low as $25 per hour to as high as $125 per hour, depending on your qualifications and experience.

Pricing by Commissionable Rates/Add Ons.

This type of pricing involves adding compensation or handling fee to all services provided at the event. You basically negotiate a discount from all service providers including florals, linens, among others that then serve as your commission.

It is important to remember that the price you set for your services will be determined by a variety of factors, including the market segment you serve, geographic location, as well as your experience and reputation.


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Jenny Fulbright

Jenny Fulbright

Jenny Fulbright is a writer for

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Category: Business Ideas, Startup Expenses

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