Do I Have To Use the In House AV?
Many of our current customers never knew they had the option of bringing their own audio visual provider into their hotel meeting until they started working with us. The truth is, bringing in your own av service provider can save you up to 50% on your audio visual budget.
What does “In-House” mean exactly? in most cases this is where an audio visual service provider is contracted to provide audio visual services at a hotel, or other venue. For the privilege of getting first rights to incoming clients they pay a percentage of their yearly revenue back to the hotel. You can now see why you’re pressured to use the In-House guys, The Hotel loves the commission on zero work. In-house providers can also be a part of a preferred vendors list who also pay for the same privilege.
Another frequent and scary situation is when the hotel has one of their employees acting as the in-house av department. usually this employee; either a banquet manager or IT guy, has minimal experience and knowledge, and that can be detrimental to your event.
In-house providers are usually busy with multiple events going on within the space and multiple meeting rooms of the hotel. this means that you wont get their full attention and often their best staff for your event. By bringing in an outside provider you pay for dedicated support for your event alone.
Take your time in reading your contract before signing. The general issue usually arises after a meeting planner signs their contract with the venue and after skimming through the audio visual section they miss a small detail stating that they will have to pay anywhere from 5 to 40 percent of their AV billing to the in-house av provider if they decide to bring in an external company. this is commonly called a corkage fee. and it is something that event planners MUST strike through this portion of the contract. The hotel makes more money from food and beverage and meeting room rentals than audio visual, so removing the clause that restricts working with your choice of provider is easy to do. Even if you’re not sure who you would like to use for audio visual, you must keep your options open and not submit to these restrictions. Hotels will be lenient, you can certainly take your business elsewhere and they are aware of that.
it is probably your best option to shop around for your audio visual provider. definitely get a quote from the in-house provider but try and be thorough in what you are receiving. do not assume that the in-house provider is the most affordable or best option in your case. most in-house providers carry only minimal equipment on-site and sub-rent anything extra that their clients might need, they mark up the price and pass the cost on to you.