12 event planning challenges & how to overcome them


Are you planning an event? Well, then you better be prepared to face different challenges that come with organizing an event. There are numerous possible complications that could arise during the process, some of which could leave you feeling frustrated and unmotivated. However, the key to overcoming these challenges is to stay positive and determined.

Here are some challenges you might encounter when planning an event and how to overcome them:

1. Not Knowing Where To Start

The initial stage of organizing an event may seem daunting and overwhelming, especially if you have never organized an event before. The best way to get started is to outline what your goals are and the key vision of your event. Start by writing a rough plan with broad sections such as:

– Invitations

– Food & Drinks

– Event Venue

– Entertainment

Since you will spend a lot of time planning your event, it is vital to plan early. Start as soon as you can and break the big picture into smaller chunks to make things easier on yourself. With each task that you complete, you will feel more reassured and confident about the upcoming steps of the organizing process.

2. Not Having A Budget In Mind

Having an event budget planned out is important to avoid any financial frustrations later on. Start by considering how much money you are willing to spend and where it will come from (e.g., your own pocket, sponsorship/donations, etc.). Be sure to create an itemized list of all expenses with at least 3 different options (e.g., inexpensive, mid-range, expensive) so that you can compare the options to find the most cost-efficient items. Also consider any possible income for your event (e.g., entrance fees, food & drinks).

3. A Full Plate Of Other Responsibilities

You may already have a full plate of responsibilities to juggle with school/work, social commitments, and family. Unfortunately, this may leave you with very little time to plan an event. The most important thing that you can do is set your priorities straight. If you want to have a successful event then you will need to prioritize the task accordingly. Be sure to list down all of your responsibilities along with their due dates and plan your time accordingly.
If you aren’t able to plan the event yourself, then enlist the help of a professional event planner.

4. Not Knowing What Will Work Best

When you are planning an event it may be difficult to choose between multiple options when making certain decisions (e.g., location, date, price). To avoid any confusion and frustration, start by creating a list of options for each decision. Prioritize the options based on what is best for your event (e.g., location will be important if you are planning to invite people from out-of-town), then create a pros and cons list for each of the options.

5. The Event Becomes Expensive & Out Of Budget

Being on a tight budget can be an issue once you have spent all of your money on creating invitations, decorations, food, etc. However, it is always possible to create an inexpensive yet successful event without spending too much money on unnecessary items. When choosing an event location, consider event venues that are free or offer a discount (e.g., museums).
When choosing food, consider inexpensive yet tasty options (e.g., fruit platters instead of steak dinners) and when it comes to decorations, think outside the box by using items you already have at home (e.g., use markers on poster boards to make signs).

6. Lack Of Prioritizing Networking Activities

Networking is one of the most important keys to promoting your event. It can help you gain new clients and promote your brand/organization while also helping you achieve your overall goals for the event. When planning your event, consider having some sort of entertainment or networking activity on hand (e.g., speed-networking, auctioning off items for charity, etc.).

7. Lack Of A Back-Up Plan In case of Bad Weather

When you are planning an outdoor event, it is important to make full use of the weather forecast in the case of any possible changes in weather conditions. To avoid wasting time or money on items that will never be used (e.g., lanterns, tents), check the forecast beforehand and plan accordingly.

8. No Reserving Enough Time To Plan An Event

It can be all too easy to put off planning your event until the last minute, but this will only cause you stress and frustration later on. Instead of waiting until the last minute to plan an event, start as early as possible and set a goal date for when you want everything to be completed (e.g. 1 month before).

9. Lack Of Event Planning Experience

It is possible to hold a successful event without having previous event planning experience. However, it will be difficult and you may make some mistakes along the way. To save you from possible embarrassment, consider hiring a professional event planner to take care of all the details. This way you’ll have peace of mind knowing that everything will be taken care of.

10. Having More Attendees Than Planned For

When hosting an event for a large number of guests, it can be difficult to accommodate all of them. To avoid disappointments on your end or on the attendee’s end, inform them of the seating arrangements beforehand (e.g., having assigned seats) and provide some sort of entertainment (e.g., music) while they wait for the event to start.
Moreover, pay close attention to social media mentions, your event app, and event forums. This will show you the number of people engaging with your event. Remember that a low number of people engaging with your event might be a sign that you need to make some changes.

11. Forgetting To Send A Thank-You Note After The Event

Whether the event was successful or not, it is always good etiquette to thank those who attended. Not sending out a thank-you note might make your attendees feel as if their time and effort were not appreciated. Sending a personalized thank you note (e.g., handwritten) is also a great way to make them even more memorable.

12. No One Shows Up To The Event

If you have planned an event in the hopes of getting people to show up, it is possible that they might not come. However, there are some things you can do beforehand to boost your attendance rate. For example, promoting your event on social media and sending out flyers or brochures are great ways to reach out to potential attendees before your event even starts.


When planning an event, it is important to stay attentive and focus on the goal at hand. Allowing yourself to get distracted can result in a less-than-satisfactory event. Making use of the tips provided above will ensure that you have a successful event no matter what obstacles may come your way.