Planning an event is one stressful situation. Whether you’re prepping for a birthday bash or your dream wedding, this task could consume your time, energy, and patience. This is why event planners are sought-after. For a fee, you can leave most of the planning and execution to someone else. The planner will strive to deliver your wishes within your budget. But still, D.I.Y speaks for every budget-conscious event host who enjoys the art of planning and all the dirty work in between.
Event planning is no walk in the park. But if done right, it can be a fulfilling experience. You can be your own event planner and save on your budget. Here are 10 tips on how to plan an event successfully.
1. Set a feasible timeline
A wedding typically requires at least 6 months in preparation. You need sufficient time to comply with legal documents, make arrangements with your church or solemnizing officer, and book a reception venue. You also have to consider guests flying over for your special event. Your relatives abroad would need ample time to prepare for their flight.
A birthday party may need at least a month to prep. If you’re throwing a massive bash, allow a couple of months ahead to reserve a venue. Remember that the yuletide season, which basically starts in October, increases the demand for event venues. Start reserving a space as early as the third quarter for your December birthday celebration.
2. Make a fair estimate of your guest count
Your choice of venue should rely on the size of your guests. If you’re holding an intimate wedding for less than 30 people, you can reserve the Function Hall at Viera Residences in Quezon City. For a big celebration of more than a hundred guests, you’ll need a bigger venue like Casa Real at Acacia Estates in Taguig City.
Sit down and jot down the names of people you want to invite. Include 1 to 2 additional guests for each invitee especially for weddings. It’s advisable to ask your invitees to confirm their attendance. Send the invites ahead of time and call each guest at least a week before the event to finalize your guest list.
3. Always keep your budget in mind
One culprit behind event planning stress is going beyond the budget. Set a ballpark figure and strive to stick with it. You can allow reasonable adjustments as you go along. What is “reasonable” depends on your finances, but make sure you won’t be breaking the bank. Your wedding is a once-in-a-lifetime occasion. It shouldn’t be remembered as that event that pushed you to bankruptcy.
4. Talk to those who’ve been in this journey
Think of planning your event as visiting a new place. You’re like a traveler venturing to a foreign land. At first, you don’t know what to do, where to go, or who to talk to. Glad that at this age, the internet provides tons of aids for research so there’s no reason to not do your little homework.
Same with planning your events—research about wine pairings for your black tie party or token ideas for your wedding. Aside from doing online searches, talk to people who’ve done events planning. Take note of their tips especially the things you should avoid to prevent mishaps. Ask questions.
5. Create committees with family and friends
Admit it. You need all the help you can get in organizing your annual family reunion. One known source of event planning stress is the belief that you can do everything on your own. Rally family and friends and create committees that will help in every aspect of the event planning and execution. Take note, however, that involving a lot of people can ignite disagreements and add unnecessary stress.
Choose only trusted people in your committees, which shall have definite tasks. Assign a head for each team for an organized coordination. Schedule a monthly or weekly meet-up for updates.
6. Know your venue options
Event venues are not limited to restaurants and hotels. More people are looking into alternative venues that are both affordable and charmingly unique. You may have seen beautiful wedding dinners held in backyards, English-style, or those held in rented ancestral houses.
Your condo community offers a selection of gorgeous venue places that are both affordable and convenient for your guests. Levina Place features a handsome clubhouse for your special affair. This venue is strategically located at the heart of Pasig City, which is accessible for your invitees. You can also book the Function Hall at Sheridan Towers, a country club-style condo community in Pasig City. The Oak Harbor Residences features The Promenade, a rooftop venue that provides a spectacular view of the Manila Bay.
7. Always update your checklist
No matter how sharp your memory is, you’re still at risk of forgetting an important detail in your plan. Don’t burden your brain by forcing it to carry every detail of your wedding. Get a journal and write down a checklist of to-do’s, materials, etc. Update it accordingly.
Here’s a tip: create a timeline for each task. Write down the estimated completion time beside every item in your checklist. Share updates with the committee concerned. You can use apps like Slack, Trello and Workspaces for easy and a more organized communication.
8. Don’t focus on mishaps; move on
Expect mistakes and mishaps. Your choice of flowers may not be available or the sound system provider may back out a week before your event. These things happen. This is why you should have a Plan B, even a Plan C, if things don’t go as planned.
Assess the situation, whether it can still be remedied, or ultimately scrapped. Talk to your committee heads for any suggested solution. Don’t fuss over the mishaps. Move on.
Do you know that some people have suffered emotional breakdowns while planning for a big event? A wedding, by itself, is already a stressful event. It’s more than a party; it’s a transition to a new chapter in your life. Add the stresses of event organizing and you have a recipe for a breakdown.
The stress will start to build up as the anticipated date approaches. Decompress as often as you need. Get the right amount of sleep, hit the gym, eat properly, hydrate, and relax. One effective tip is to disconnect from your communication channels for certain hours in a day. Rest your mind and spirit.
10. Be proud of yourself
Planning an event that will mark a milestone in your life is a serious role. The pressure can drive you to work harder yet put you at risk of burnout. Take joy in every accomplished task. Be proud of yourself.
There is no secret in pulling off a smashing event. Set a realistic timeline, stick with the budget, work with people, and de-stress. Most importantly, acknowledge every completed task. You’re doing an amazing job. Keep moving.