Organising a retreat shouldn’t be stressful – or expensive. Here’s our tips to help you to keep costs down whilst keeping enjoyment levels up.
Establish your timeline
The more time that you have to organise your retreat, the easier it will be. Take time to plan things properly, and try not to do things last minute because last-minute needs can often lead to higher bills. Ideally give yourself a good six months or more (depending on the size of the retreat).
Establish your budget
Decide a realistic budget, and stick to it! Decide in advance what are the essentials and which things are the ‘nice to haves’. Consider the purpose of the retreat and why you are planning it and what you and everyone else needs to achieve and get out of it. Create a clear overview plan and then the details will stem from that.
Choose your venue wisely
The venue you choose will have a huge impact on your budget. If you choose a luxury spa resort, you should expect to pay for the luxury, and for your members to also pay dearly for any extras they choose to buy whilst away.
Work with your venue
If your dates are flexible, you will have greater purchasing power. Talk to your venue team, and explain that you have a budget and ask them how they can help you to reduce costs. For example, they may have quieter periods where they can accommodate your group at a lower price than when the venue is really busy, and weekends may be better than midweek etc. Trust your venue team to help you and tap into their expertise and guidance.
Save money on catering
If you are taking over a whole venue, ask if you can have access to their kitchens so you and your attendees can prepare your own food. This will ensure you can keep costs down, and also cater for any specific dietary requirements too. If not, speak to your venue about their DDR (day delegate rate) and how you can leverage this to best effect.
Create budget friendly activities
Creativity doesn’t have to be expensive, and your choice of venue could really help to keep activity costs down. Choosing a venue with lots of green space (and with the benefit of good weather) will enable you to plan outside activities for your attendees. The venue may have outdoor games for you to use – just ask and see how they can help.
How can your participants help?
Make sure you communicate often with your participants and talk to them about how they can contribute and even bring their own pens, paper and the stationary needed for the retreat. Do they have games they could bring to share maybe? Bring your community in to help organise and share the load!
Make sure you have itineraries for everyone, maps of the venue and a list of what everyone needs to bring, and distribute these a few days in advance. If things are forgotten, this could lead to added expenses of buying things in at the last minute.
The key to organising a cost-effective retreat is down to good planning and a collaborative approach with your venue and participants. The more you can do this, the better the retreat experience will be and the more fun you will have too!
If you are interested in holding a retreat, please get in touch with our team to discuss: firstname.lastname@example.orgGo back to other articles