How was this year's Christmas party? Whether it was a
roaring success or you'd like to make it better next year, we're
here to help, with top tips and advice on planning the perfect
So don't put it off - start the year as you mean to go on, with
a big tick on your 2016 To Do list!
1. Book as early as possible
It's never too early to book your venue.
It's not unusual for companies to book in January to secure the
best dates for next year's party, and most will book by
September at the latest. Be aware that when booking
later your options may be reduced, particularly around popular
dates, and that you'll have to cram more party planning into a much
2. Work with the experts
You can dramatically reduce your workload by holding your party at
an off-site venue. Remove the hassle of setting up and clearing
away afterwards and benefit from a team of experts to do all the
leg-work and bring your vision to life.
3. Get everyone involved
Getting other people's input, availability and travel expectations
will allow you to choose a venue that suits as many people as
possible. Then,identify your team of helpers and their
particular set of skills, and don't be afraid to share the
4. Get the 'Save the Date' notice
Don't fret about creating the perfect invitation - you're planning
early so you've plenty of time! The priority at this stage is
to get the date into everyone's diary. So get a 'Save the
Date' notice out as soon as your booking is confirmed and let the
5. Plan food and drink
Think about whether you are taking a formal or a more
relaxed approach. If it's a formal event, a three-course meal or
canapés could be perfect, or if you want a relaxed theme, you might
need a venue who can suggest something a little bit different,
perhaps with tapas selections or sharing platters.
And don't waste precious time chasing up your fellow party-goers'
menu choices - choose a venue who can manage this for you. At
QHotels we use 'Tell The Chef' - an automated system which will
email all your guests at regular intervals until they confirm their
menu choices, and they'll even have a reminder on their name card
for when they inevitably forget on the night what they've
6. Pack more into the
We're seeing more and more companies combining their
Christmas parties with their annual conference or team building
activity, creating cost efficiencies, adding value to the overall
experience and giving staff more time away from the shop floor. If
this is the case, a residential event might help you link the two
and choosing a venue who can offer you bedrooms, conference space
and team building expertise would allow you to plan this as a
(Did we mention that we can do all this at QHotels?! )
7. Have fun with the theme
For many companies, the theme of the party is one of the most
important elements and it's a great way to stamp your
mark on this year's party.
Easy fancy dress themes which always go down well
include an 'alphabet' theme, where everyone dresses as
something which starts with the same letter, or a colour theme
where you ask everyone to dress in a particular hue.
The key is to think creatively, but go with what suits your
company and colleagues. And if you're struggling for inspiration,
talk to the Event Co-ordinator at your venue who is bound to have
some great suggestions to fit your party perfectly.
8. Don't fret about the details
While added extras can be great, the key things at a
party are that everyone is well fed, well watered, and kept
entertained - whether that's with a disco or something more
elaborate. Get those details right and everyone will forgive
the lack of a croupier or photobooth.
9. Sit back and relax!
With the main decisions made, the date booked and the venue
confirmed at the start of the year, the pressure is truly
off. Yes, there are more decisions to be made but
these can wait until the summer, so for now just sit back and
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