2020 Conference Planning: Start Now

Date Posted: 14/10/2019 9:11:01 AM
Posted By: Laissez-faire Catering


The time to start planning for your company's 2020 conferences is now! Starting early on your event planning gives you the chance to make sure everything is perfect. You'll be able to take your time planning, connect with others for ideas, and secure the best venues and Sydney corporate catering services.

Why Should You Start Planning Your 2020 Conference Now?

The best venues and caterers are booked months in advance. If you want your event to really shine, you need to book a location as soon as possible — and that begins with research. You're not going to find the perfect venue overnight, nor are you going to be able to develop your catering menu immediately. Starting your planning now gives you time to really let the event reveal itself to you.

Here are the major advantages of starting early:

  • Don't get out booked. What happens if you wait too long, and can't find any available venues? You'll just have to settle for the venues that are available.
  • Get better rates. The earlier you book, the more likely you are to be able to get a great deal. Rates are going to rise closer to the date, as demand will also rise.
  • Plan more thoroughly. With more time, you can ensure that the occasion goes off without a hitch — something especially important for a large event.
  •  Get information to you attendees. The earlier you have a venue, the earlier you can tell your attendees where they're going, so you can plan ahead.
  • Plan for dietary restrictions. If you need to poll attendees regarding allergies and dietary restrictions, you will need additional planning time.
  • Get it out of the way. Undoubtedly, you're a busy person who has other responsibilities. Getting the planning over with means you won't get bogged down if you have other priorities.
  • Avoid any last minute issues. If a problem comes up, it'll come up now... not just before the event. You'll be better prepared and be able to reduce your risk.
  • Create a complete menu. The most memorable part of any business gathering is the food. Start crafting the menu now to make sure it's perfect by the time the conference begins.

There are many things that should be handled as soon as possible, and planning for a 2020 conference is one of them. 2020 is just around the corner, and if you haven't planned for your major events yet, you may find yourself having to rush later on.

Where Should You Start?

A conference is a tremendous undertaking. Many people don't start their conference planning immediately because they are feeling overwhelmed. But breaking your planning down into distinct steps and stages can help you manage your planning more effectively.

Start with your head count and your general idea for the event. How long will the conference run? What general location should the conference be in? Will it need to be closer to the airport or farther from it? All these questions will help you with our decision-making later on.

Take the time to consider your guests, who they are, and what they like. Plan an appropriate theme, and eventually that will lead you to the ideal venue. By planning ahead, you won't need to settle for whatever is available at the last minute.

There are some distinct advantages to connecting with a caterer before you select a venue. At Laissez-faire, we know the best venues in the area, and we're able to help customers find the venues that best suit the needs for their event. Not every venue is suitable to every occasion, and catering for corporate events in particular can require specific things from a venue. Contact Laissez-faire Today to Get Started Do you have a conference coming up in 2020? The time to book a caterer and a venue is now.

Contact Laissez-faire today to get started.

You can call us at (02) 9209 4810 or make an enquiry online

Everything You Need to Know to Organise Your Next Conference

Date Posted: 14/08/2018 7:18:11 PM
Posted By: Roselen Fernandez


Even though there are numerous tasks involved in properly planning a conference, you can use our helpful checklist to make sure you don't leave anything out. From talking with the caterers to choosing the venue and sending out invites, here's everything you need to know to organise your next conference. 

Ideally, you will want to start the planning process 16 to 18 months in advance. The larger the event, the more time you will need to plan. If you don't have 16 to 18 months to prepare for your next event, you can adjust the suggested time guideline below to meet your needs. 

16-18 Months Before the Event

Set Goals with Your Planning Committee

First, you need to set goals and objectives for your event. What is the purpose of the event? Next, you're going to build a planning committee that can help you bring these goals to life. The planning committee will need to determine how many attendees you are going to invite, which will help in determining how much space you need. This is also the point at which you will set an exact date for the event to take place. 

Select date

Work out the Budget

Your planning committee will also be in charge of developing a preliminary budget as well as soliciting sponsorship. Even if you already have a budget in place to pay for the event, soliciting sponsorship is an excellent way to minimize your out-of-pocket costs. 

Find a Venue

Now you will want to choose a venue. Keep in mind there will likely be several venues that can accommodate the space and purpose of your event, so you'll want to visit each one in person to get an idea of which one is the best fit. Once you choose which venue is best suited to meet the event's needs, you'll want to secure it with a deposit.

Think about Themes

If the event is going to have a theme, you need to pinpoint any specifics, and you'll also start incorporating theme specifics into your event's marketing plan. You might find it helpful to build a website centered around the event and its theme, or at least a page on your current website or company intranet. This page can even used as an the event registration platform. 

Develop Event Master Plan

Send out Invitations and Finalise Any Contracts

As far as "save the date" notices, you can send them via postal mail, email, or both. And if any additional contracts need to be secured with providers, such as hotel accommodations, this is the point you will want to secure them. 

12-14 Months Before the Event

Round Up the Speakers

About a year in advance, you will want to secure speakers for the event. Don't forget to line up a list of substitute speakers just in case something was to happen and one or more of the original speakers cannot make it to the conference. To entice speakers, you will want to assure them you will take care of their lodging and food expenses. 

Identify and contact sponsors/partners

Start Marketing

It's also at this time that you will need to start marketing the conference and its registration rates. All of this information should be clearly outlined on the event's website. 

Nine to 10 Months Before the Event

Start Accepting Registrations

This is when you open registration to those you invited. You are likely not paying for attendees' hotels, but you should consider teaming up with certain local hotels and secure special rates for attendees to take advantage of. You will want to display these special rates on the event's website. 

Four to Six Months Before the Event

Finalise the Agenda

You will use this period of time to finalise the event's speakers and agenda. Don't forget to update the event's website with speaker information. You'll also need to prepare for the event's audio and visual needs as well as properly plan for anyone who may attend in a wheelchair. 

Three Months Before the Event

Choose a Caterer

It's now time to select caterers and choose menus for the event. You can also use this time to send reminders to speakers and finalise event details relating to any smaller items like linens, flowers, and decor. 


See our conference menus for ideas:

Liaison with presenters/speakers

Venue/logistics planning: 

  • Investigate need for any special permits, licenses, insurance, etc.
  • Determine and arrange all details re menu, A/V equipment, registration set-up, parking, signage, etc.
  • Review security needs
  • Create draft event script

Ensure you have copies of phone numbers, seating arrangement and guest list 

Check-in with all parties involved if everyone is on track 

Provide final registration numbers to caterer 

Three Weeks Before the Event

Final Confirmations

Confirm conference arrangements, such as those made with caterers and also assign session moderators. 


If any printed material is going to be used during the event, such as seating designation signs and brochures, you will need to have them printed at this time. 

One Week Before the Event



The set up for tomorrow's breakfast 2000 pax #cateringsydney

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All materials need to be shipped to the conference venue and a walk-through needs to be performed. 


Email reminders should, again, be sent to all attendees and speakers. 

Oversee Equipment Setup

Audio and video equipment should be set up during this time too.

Day of the Event

Take it all in!

Relax and rest assured your extensive conference planning has paid off. 

This checklist is a great starting point. If you need some help along the way, Laissez-faire Catering can cater to all your event needs. Call us today! Tell us about your event and we'll give you a quote and get started.