The Ultimate Planning Checklist

The Ultimate Planning Checklist

Event planning can be overwhelming. You come up with a brilliant or exciting idea and that’s the easy part. It can seem like you have a mountain to climb with everything that has to get done before an event! Take a look at this list — it might save you time, money, and lower your stress level! 

Ask yourself these questions:

1. What is your event? Who are your target attendees? 

Once you have this nailed down, you can work from there to figure out the when of your event. If you’re throwing an event for families you may want to consider a weekend afternoon, but an event for a business-style meet and greet might be better suited to cocktail hour. 

2. What is your guest list going to look like? 

This is more important than ever. With social distancing and gathering restrictions in place across the globe, many venues have lowered their maximum capacities, in accordance with local guidelines. Consider throwing your event outside — or, as the weather turns, online!


Photo by Natasha Fernandez from Pexels

3. What is your budget – is there any wiggle room? 

Your budget will affect every facet of your event, it determines everything from the menu to decor, to potential party favors. It’s important to remember that bigger (more expensive) is not always better. A great big floral centerpiece may look awesome from a distance, but you have to consider if it will inhibit conversation flow for guests. A great perk to virtual events is the positive impacts on a budget. Consider using that extra money to send your attendees little gifts ahead of time or supplies for an activity to do together!

4. What will you be serving? 

Not every event needs a multi-course meal but most events need a little something-something — refreshments at the very least. Of course, your menu is going to be dictated by your guests, your budget, and the overall theme of your event. Something to consider is leftovers. If you anticipate there will be a lot of leftovers — all that extra food has to go somewhere! Fewer leftovers are good for the environment, take a moment to reflect on similar events you’ve planned, was there a ton of food left? Or did some guests leave hungry? Adjust accordingly from there, and you’ll grow your instincts for this kind of thing! 

5. What does your itinerary look like? 

Sometimes a party doesn’t need formal activities like a child’s birthday party or a baby shower. But a simple itinerary can be incredibly helpful for yourself, and your guests if you choose to share it with them. Knowing down to the minute when doors are unlocked and when the first round of drinks is meant to be served can help you keep track of everything that is going on, even when you can’t be everywhere at once. If you can, memorize the itinerary for the night, you’ll be able to spot a mishap as soon as it happens and address it immediately!

Asking yourself these simple questions when you begin planning any sort of event can make the process a lot smoother. Opening a document or even writing the answers down in point form can help create a sense of organization before you start making calls and getting down to the nitty-gritty details of everything!