Part of maximizing a meeting budget is adding value, and the name of the game is concessions. The severe business climate of 2009 opened up many windows for meeting planners to request them, and the trend continues. If you play your cards right, the sales manager will fulfill many of these requests.
From experience I can tell you that many of these concessions are already assumed to be included - meaning that there is a pre-set list that hotels have already approved for specific program sizes. I can also tell you that few of these concessions will be offered to you if you don't ask for them!
Sharpen your negotiation skills by requesting some of these common concessions:
• Discounts off of menu prices
• Discounts off of audio visual pricing
• Complimentary rooms
• Airline miles and/or Rewards Points
• Waived meeting/function space rental fees
• Half & Full day packages
• Complimentary or discounted parking
• Waived or reduced attrition policies
• Sleeping room upgrades
• Upgraded menu options and technical equipment
• Waived internet fees
• Complimentary hospitality suite
• Rebates or credits to the Group Master Accounts