• Ellerslie Event Centre

How to: understand event terminology - Part 1

Planning an event but overwhelmed by all the jargon?

Every industry has its own terms, slang and buzz words thrown around by those in the know - and events are no different.

To make sure you can keep up with the chat when planning your next event, we’ve put together a list of words you’re likely to come across, so you can talk the talk with the best of them.



Account Manager – Your personal contact at your event venue. They’ll help coordinate your event from start to finish from the venue's perspective including food, beverage, health & safety and so on

AV (aka Audio Visual) - This is all of your visual and sound requirements for an event and includes things such as screens, monitors, projectors, microphones and additional lighting

Example of the back of house

Back of house – The areas of service that aren’t seen by guests such as the kitchen

Bar on consumption – This is when you only pay for what is consumed by you and your guests

Bar tab – When you have a set amount of money to be spent on beverages at the bar. Once this is reached there are a generally a few options; you can either extend the tab a little bit (add an extra $__), switch to a cash bar or switch to paying on consumption. See above for ‘Bar on consumption’ and below for ‘Cash bar’ definitions

Beverage package – This is when you pay a set amount (generally per head) for beverages to be served during a specified time period - this could be the entire duration of your event or set to a time, such as 'one hour after the conference finishes'). Beverage package rates vary depending on what type and quality of beverages you'd like your guests to be able to enjoy

Cash bar – This means your guests pay for their own drinks. Cash bar doesn’t mean just cash - most venues will also allow guests to pay via EFTPOS too

Centrepiece – The table decoration in the centre of each table, common at weddings, gala dinners and school balls

Duty Manager – They are your venue's go-to person on the day of your event. Anything you need the venue to do can be sorted out for you by this person, or they’ll send the correct person your way. If there is alcohol being served, they are also in charge of the bar and are required to manage levels of intoxication at the event

Front of house - This is the area that guests are located when at your event, such as your event room

Function sheet – This is the order of instructions that outlines all details of your event. As a venue, we create one and circulate internally to ensure our staff know what should be happening in order to ensure your event runs smoothly. This can sometimes also be called a BEO or, 'Banquet event order'


Whilst not an exhaustive list, the above terms are the most common phrases thrown around by event professionals. However, if a word comes up that you aren’t familiar with, feel free to ask your friendly account manager – they're there for that very purpose.

Otherwise, stand by for Part 2 where we take you through the G-Zs of event industry terminology.

#experttips #venuehireauckland #howto #events

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