We have recently been asked to travel to Dallas with one of our corporate clients to run their inaugural conference and awards, as we have supplied and ran their Leicester and London events for over 5 years now, our event manager Tara who has over 18 years of event management experience under her belt is perfectly placed to do this.

What has prompted this article is the shocking prices the hotel’s recommended AV company has provided and it got me thinking if a person has no experience with the audio-visual side of their conferences would these prices just simply be accepted as a case of –

‘Well we have to go with this company, it’s what the hotel recommends, we have no choice?’

Admittedly it can be quite daunting organising a conference in a foreign country or a different city especially when you need your speakers to be on a stage set with all the correct equipment for their presentations to be displayed and then an awards night to take place in the same evening. Thankfully, with having years of event management experience and of course working for an audio visual company for the last 7 years we am more than comfortable to look beyond the hotel and search for at least another 3 companies to provide quotations so we can present a good selection of quotations but does everyone have the confidence to do this?

Whilst we were searching for AV companies in Dallas, some of the things we looked for were –

  • Has this AV company ever worked at this hotel?
  • Do they have images of the kind of stage sets that we are looking for?
  • Do they have testimonials / news blogs on their website?
  • Do they have a social media presence that’s regularly updated with the live events that they produce? We feel this one is vital so you can check that companies haven’t just taken images from google and put them on their site. Behind the scene, setups and all of the crew wearing company branded tops etc is a great indicator.

As the quotations came in, some of the prices were sky high but none so utterly ridiculous and shocking as the hotels in-house recommended supplier –

Hotels AV company – $28,290.81 (reduced from $46,131.00)
External AV Company – $10,000
External AV Company – $11,007.94
External AV Company – $5,482.86

Our initial reactions to the hotels recommended supplier’s quote was nothing short of anger. This is a worldwide known hotel chain who are happily providing their corporate clients with an AV company whose prices have taken the phrase ‘being ripped off’ to a whole new level. $28,290.81 for a basic AV stage set (let’s not even mention the original price of $46,131.00 prior to their discount!)

After May we’ll post an update about the event, which Audio Visual company the client choose, how the event went and our overall event management experience of working in Dallas.

Hybrid AVs prices are fair, our service is professional and experienced, so the next time where ever you are in the country, if you have received a quotation from venues recommended audio visual supplier whose prices are just plain ridiculous and are blowing your budget, send your brief over to us for a comparable quotation and don’t be afraid to look elsewhere.

Contact – hello@hybrid-av.co.uk

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