• Tips for the perfect venue contract from Capita Travel and Events

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    Booking a venue? Don’t sign on the dotted line until you’ve read Capita Travel and Events’ expert checklist for what to look out for.

    Master the venue contract basics
    A contract should include the name of the space being booked and the times; factor in the time taken to set up/clear the room, especially for ‘blank canvas’ venues where you are bringing your own equipment.

    Some venues state that they can change a room without your approval – specify that you’ll only approve changes in writing.

    Look out for the cancellation clause
    Cancellation clauses vary between venues. You’re likely to be responsible for the full cost of venue hire if you cancel within 60 days of the event, so try and negotiate flexible terms – Capita aims to reduce this to 30 days. If a venue is resold after cancellation, state that the amount recouped should be reduced from your charges.

    Remember the permission slip
    If you’re planning on filming your event or taking photographs, include this in your contract. The venue might have security policies and need advance notice/approval.

    Be ready for attrition
    Each standard contract should include an attrition clause. This clause will allow you to reduce numbers by 10% or 20% (industry standard) up to seven days prior to an event taking place. As with most things, this is open for negotiation.

    Detail the logistics
    Include details of how your guests are arriving. If the venue is a busy one, this will guarantee a time slot for parking and other access. If you’re planning any team building or use of audio-visual equipment, it’s vital to agree this in the contract.

    Read the jargon
    It’s crucial to define who has liability for health and safety issues or damage at an event. The venue is usually responsible for risks under its control, but you may need your own cover when taking delegates off-site. Check with your procurement manager. Also, ask that the venue tells you if there are any of your competitors on-site on the same day – it could be a confidentiality risk to your business.

    To read the rest of Capita’s tips, visit capitatravelevents.co.uk/News-and-insights/expert-insights/tips-for-the-perfect-venue-contract/


    Molly Dyson

    Former Editor – PA Life

    All stories by: Molly Dyson