The Ultimate Event Planning Checklist

July 24, 2018

This event planning checklist will make sure you haven’t missed any of the finer details when planning your event.

If you’re reading this, chances are you’re at the stage where you’re ready to insure your event. And that means you’ve come to the right place! With Insure Our Event, you can get a quote in minutes.

We know how stressful it can be to plan and organise an event. One of the worst things about event planning is making sure that you’ve remembered everything. It’s like packing for your holiday; we guarantee you’ll forget something.

Which is why we’ve come up with this handy checklist! Print it out, put it on your office wall, and tick things off when you’ve got them.

We start with insurance, but as you’re here, you can purchase that and get it ticked off straight away.

So now we’ve got that out the way, here is our ultimate event planning checklist. This isn’t specific to any event type, so make sure you cross out the ones that don’t apply to you. If you think of any we haven’t added, please get in touch!

The business side of things

  • Set your budget for initial running costs (the amount you’re willing to spend before you receive any money)
  • Fundraise to achieve your initial running costs
  • Set your target income for the event
  • Map out how much you are prepared to spend in total

Consider your location

  • Choose your venue
  • Do background checks on your venue
  • Agree cost of the venue and sign a contract
  • Plot the layout of your venue
  • Contact the council about your event and secure all the necessary licenses
  • Tell the police about your event
  • Contact the local transport companies to advise and find out about any possible disruptions
  • Vet the location to see what equipment they can provide. Check the insurance and testing on any electronics

 Staff your event

  • Hire staff or use a sub-contractor to provide staff
  • Purchase staff uniform
  • Purchase supplies for staff break area such as tea bags and snacks
  • Create staff rota

Booking live acts

  • Book the act
  • Arrange transport for the act
  • Book accommodation for the act
  • Sort any equipment that they won’t be providing themselves

Booking non-live music

  • Acquire the relevant license to play radio or pre-recorded music
  • Create your playlist(s)
  • Book speaker systems and ensure that the venue can facilitate (if they don’t already have their own speaker

 Arranging food and drink

  • Choose your caterer(s)
  • Do background checks to make sure they have the relevant food hygiene certification
  • Work out how they gain access to the venue and tell them where they should pitch
  • Organise staff to aid the catering operation
  • Create system for rubbish/recycling disposal and clean up
  • Acquire temporary license for venue to serve alcohol

Shopping experiences

  • Find appropriate market stalls and agree payment type (profit share, one off fee etc)
  • Background check to ensure that stalls meet ethical standards of your event
  • Create map of pitches and let the stalls know where they will be positioned
  • Create your own merchandise to sell at the event and set pricing structure
  • If you aren’t running your own shop, arrange transport for people to go and buy essentials and then return to your event
  • Speak to an ATM provider about the possibility of a portable cash machine (if your event is big enough)

 Toilet arrangements

  • Work out a toilets-per-person ratio
  • If the venue doesn’t have adequate toilet facilities, source a portable toilet company
  • Set rota of staff to keep toilets hygienic

 Arrange security for your event

  • Source company who can provide SIA licensed professionals to work the security at your venue
  • Set rota of security for alcohol vendors, general areas and entry/exit points
  • Source surveillance company to place CCTV cameras at your event and monitor (if it is big enough)
  • Contact the police – they may want to offer additional security at/around the venue

Start to sell tickets

  • Create tickets with a ticket provider
  • Source an online ticketing platform like Fixr to sell tickets
  • Set up ticketing hotline (if your event is big enough)
  • Source a refund protection system, like Booking Protect, to give additional peace of mind to your customers and increase your revenue

Consider the environmental impact

  • Create system of recycling and litter collection
  • Source recycling and rubbish receptacles to cover all areas of the event
  • Create signage urging people to look after the environment
  • Enquire about a survey of the local area to ensure that noise pollution (if playing loud music) will not harm or disturb wildlife

Publicise your event

  • Create a website for people to find information about the event
  • Develop social media profiles to give people information and create viral buzz
  • Create adverts for your event (social media, magazine, TV)
  • Write a press release about your event and send to journalists
  • Pay for ad space in relevant magazines
  • Create flyers for your event
  • Create signage to display at your event with your logo and branding on
  • Source professional photographers or videographers to document the event

Don’t forget medical care

  • Ensure that enough staff are first aid trained, or use a professional body such as St John’s Ambulance
  • Source medical supplies to run a medical room/tent in a central area
  • Create a space for recovery for non-serious medical issues such as drunkenness or minor drug use

Consider Health and Safety

  • Create a risk management plan. This is something that should be established by a professional. If you want the best possible advice on risk management, contact us first.

 In case of emergency…

  • Speak to the relevant authorities regarding emergency procedures. Make sure police and ambulance know that your event is taking place so they can offer support if needed
  • Create a route planner for emergency exit in the event of a fire or other incident
  • Create a contingency plan in the event that your event has to be cancelled. How will people leave the event? Where do you want them to go when they leave? Are businesses in the area aware that your event is taking place and are they ready for a possible influx of customers?
  • Arrange cancellation insurance. Unfortunately, the worst can sometime happen. If your event has to be cancelled for reasons outside of your control, you’ll want the peace of mind to know that you won’t be left out of pocket. You can talk to Insure Our Event about cancellation insurance.

Complete your event planning checklists and risk assessments

For risk management, and to make sure you’ve done all the required tasks. These don’t have to be on paper anymore, as tools like isitchecked can be downloaded onto your smartphone.

You can also use Insure Our Event’s further event planning checklists to help you adequately assess the risks at every stage of your event planning. For more advice and information, get in touch!

More to explore

Get in touch

Every decision we make as a business is made to improve the customer experience. We’ll always put you first because, without you, we don’t have a business.