Event Planner Pricing

This year marks 15 years that I have been a professional event planner. In the early years of my career, and then again when I started Events with Ginger & Co., various colleagues and friends provided advice and encouragement, sometimes completely overhauling my ideas, my writing and even my event planning systems!

Now I am contacted regularly by college students studying event planning, recent graduates trying to get into the field, as well as those starting their own events businesses. I try to make time for every one of them as my way of thanking the mentors who have helped me. Pay it forward, so to speak.

One of the first questions that always pops up is event planner pricing. “How do you price your event planning services?” they all ask. I always preface my answer with the fact that each event planner needs to decide the system that works best for their business and budget but I’ve found the best way for us and our clients is project-based event planning pricing.

Event Planner Pricing Events with Ginger & Co.
You can read more about our event planning pricing system here, but to fully answer a new freelance event planner’s pricing question, I first ask them:
  • What is your annual salary goal?
  • How many hours per year do you expect to work to meet that goal?

Divide the two and you have your hourly rate. Then comes the next set of questions:

  • What services does your potential client need?
  • How many hours will it take you to complete those services?
Times that by your hourly rate and you have your project fee. That’s the mathematic portion of event planner pricing. Then it’s time to step back and look at the bigger picture:
  • Can your client afford your project fee? If not, are you willing to work for less per hour or, for a non-profit organization, donate hours to the project?

Although in-kind services (your time) are not tax deductible, we often find the benefits to our hearts outweigh the reduced income. In the end, event planner pricing continues to be highly variable – all the better for organizations looking for the best fit for their events.

About Ginger Berman

As President of Events with Ginger & Co., Ginger oversees the planning of 15-20 events each year, including the five simultaneous Light The Night Walks for the NJ chapter of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, as well as conferences and gala dinners for various other nonprofit organizations and corporate and professional services firms.Previously, as Special Projects Manager/Consultant to the co-founders of the organization Autism Speaks, she designed and executed events from concept to completion, ensuring they went off without a hitch and met their awareness-building and fundraising potential. High-profile events included the first chefs’ tasting in NYC to offer table-side cooking to over 370 people, which raised over $1.1 million, and the $1.8 million Concert for Autism Speaks featuring Lionel Richie.Prior to joining Autism Speaks, Ginger created the position of Marketing Manager, Conference and Event Planning at the New York headquarters office of White & Case, one of the largest and most prestigious law firms in the world. She managed client-facing retreats, educational seminars and other special events for the firm. In 2007, she returned to the firm as a consultant, organizing six days of events in three months time, including registration, hotel, airport transfers, two receptions, an all-day meeting and a black tie dinner dance for more than 550 people.Ginger earned her B.S., magna cum laude, in Mass Communications from Towson University and also attended American University of Rome in Italy. She lives in Westfield, NJ with her husband and son.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *