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83% found event costs increased during 2023 in recent cost of living survey


The Eastside Rooms’ cost of living impact survey reveals that 83% of organisers saw an increase in event costs in the last year. In response 48% of organisers increased registration fees in 2023, whilst 51% of associations/not for profits and corporates have needed to seek different ways to balance the budget. That saving has come from reduced catering and AV, to increases in registrations fees.

The Eastside Rooms, a leading, modern venue in Birmingham, the heart of England, conducted a survey of 125* event professionals from around the world in October 2023 to identify challenges and opportunities faced due to economic challenges.

Overall, 83% of respondents have seen an increase in event costs in the past year, with 45% describing it as significant.  When broken down, associations/not for profits are feeling the bite more significantly, with 88% of them seeing an increase versus 73% of corporates.

Corporates and non-profits deal with event costs increases differently

The two different sides of the industry are attempting to mitigate the financial challenges in a number of different ways.

51% of associations/not for profits are reducing catering costs at their events.  This compares to just 25% of the corporates, who see the biggest opportunity to make savings as a reduction in delegate numbers – 28%.

Another stark difference between the two sides of the market are changes in AV/production costs, where 35% of associations/not for profits are reducing spend compared to just 20% of corporates.

One area where associations/not for profits are making a significant additional change is the amount charged for registration, with 59% increasing fees, this compares to 28% of the corporates (48% across all respondents).  It is noteworthy that 23% of the associations/not for profits are putting registration fees up by more than 10%.

One area where the two sectors do line up is the frequency of events, with both associations/not for profits (29%) and corporate (25%) reducing how often they are holding meetings and conference.

“That organisers are facing financial challenge is not a surprise.  However, we wanted to understand the specific challenges our clients are facing to ensure we are responding and offering the right solutions,” comments Leanne Bladen, Director of Sales & Marketing at The Eastside Rooms. “It is clear from these results that it is not just the organisers that need to think differently as they deliver events but also the venues, caterers and myriad other suppliers in the event sector.  Recognising the need to reduce catering and AV/production budgets for example allows us to consider what is reasonable in our proposals as well as what is needed and what is a nice to have.”

*The Eastside Rooms surveyed 125 event professionals in October 2023.  During the survey they were asked what type of organisation they worked for; these were combined into two groups as follows:

  • Association, charity/not for profit, government/public sector and agencies focused on these sectors. Total – 80 respondents – described as associations/not for profits above
  • Corporate company 500 or more employees, corporate company less that 500 employees, agencies focused on the corporate sector. Total – 40 respondents – described as corporates above
  • The remaining 5 responses were excluded as industry suppliers

69% of the respondents were from the UK, 19% from Europe and the remaining 12% from the rest of the world

See more information about The Eastside Rooms and its commitment to sustainability


About Eastside Rooms

The Eastside Rooms is a premier venue located in the vibrant city of Birmingham, UK.  It is the city’s newest venue, with state-of-the-art flexible facilities and a commitment to sustainability.  The modern venue offers a “stylish with a touch of cool” setting for conferences, events, and gatherings of all sizes up to 1,200 delegates.

PA Life Club enjoyed a fam trip to the Eastside Rooms.