Budgets for Events and Business Functions in UK

The budgets for events and business functions can be as high or as low as needed. The location, venue size, type of activities and food and beverage selections are just a few of the factors that will affect the total cost of events. On average though, organisers in UK spend an average of about £70,000 per event. The seven major expenditures for typical events are:

  • Venues

    The choice of venues usually consumes the largest share of an event budget, with an average gross spend of a little over £10,700. Interestingly though, about a quarter of organisers (typically direct instead of event planners) managed to secure hosting for free due to high F&B and accommodation spending.

  • Food & Beverage

    Catering is an exceptionally important part of any event planning. Low quality food and drinks can ruin events very quickly and literally become a subject of conversation for years. The negative publicity and resentment will linger for an extraordinarily long time. For events held in hotels or large venues, organisers usually just hire the in-house restaurants or catering team, because they are a safe bet. Things tend to get a little tricky when outside caterers are hired - this is where connections and experience comes in handy. For the last calendar year, event planners spend an average of £6,000 on F&B per event.

  • FF & E and Infrastructure

    While venues normally provide a host of amenities and equipment, event organisers still have to spend quite a hefty sum on FF & E and infrastructure such as decorations, staging areas, booths, lighting, sound and PA system - and cost can skyrocket for outdoor events. The average gross spend for FF & E and infrastructure is £9,800, which makes it the third most expensive item in events.

  • Marketing and Promotion

    Getting people to come to events takes more than just sending invitation cards. A variety of methods such as direct mails, social media promotions, print and display ads, and posters and banners are used to get traffic into events. The average amount spent for marketing and promotion is £4,900.

  • Insurance Coverage

    Insurance premiums are the second most expensive expenditure group for any event. On average, insurance coverage cost about £10,000. While costly, insurance is a regulatory requirement, and this ensures organisers cut no corner when it comes to the safety of the attendees.

  • Video Recording and Photography

    The prevalence of videos and cameras in the digital age sometimes makes us forget that professional videographers and photographers cost money - and they're worth every penny (average £2,700), especially for organisations which intend to promote their events to the press or memorialise them on the social media.

  • On-Site Hires

    Sure, hiring temporary waiters or sales assistants for a few hours or a day won't amount to much. However, the numbers can begin to add up once an emcee, exhibition models or entertainers are brought into the picture. Some companies even spend tens of thousands of pounds hiring national-level celebrities to make an appearance at their event. However, as a whole, the industry spends about £5,400 on onsite hires.

    Naturally, events attract other expenditures such as security and promotional material. However, the above seven are the primary cost-generators of events.