• About VenueBook

  • Event Basics

  • Booking Your Event

  • Managing Your Event

  • Paying For Your Event

  • ExpressBook

  • List Your Venue

Commonly Asked Questions About Private Events

  • What is VenueBook?

    VenueBook is an online marketplace making the event booking process simple, quick and painless. Our platform offers over 500 unique venues across 4 cities, so we're confident you'll be able to find the perfect space to host your event. Find a venue, send proposals to venue managers, receive proposals from venue managers, book your event and pay, all via our platform. Our goal is to bring bookers and venue managers together in one place for a seamless transaction. On the venue side, VenueBook has created an online platform for helping venue managers manage their event inquiries and booked events.

  • What does VenueBook do?

    VenueBook is revolutionizing the way people think about event booking. Our platform lets bookers search for and find the perfect venue for any type of event. We let venues and bookers plan together online, creating a smarter and efficient experience for all. No more phone tag or misplaced emails; you can keep all your communications with venue managers in one place. Plus, real time availability lets you know whether a venue can accommodate your event right away. We simplify planning, so you can have more fun!

  • Why should you use VenueBook?

    Booking events can be both stressful and tedious. You don't know which venues offer event space and you don’t want to research, call and email 100 venues for more information. VenueBook quickly connects you to our network of venues. Save time and focus on what really matters -- throwing a successful event.

  • What should I expect when using VenueBook?

    When you use VenueBook you can expect to send a request and hear back from a venue manager within 1-3 business days. After you receive a response, you’ll be prompted to accept the proposal, sign the contract and place a 25% deposit.

  • Why should I book my event online?

    Why not? You can pretty much get or do anything online now. Why should booking events be any different? If you want to speed up your event booking process, online is the way to go. Of course if you’d prefer to research 10 venues independently, send 10 separate e-mails and wait for 10 different venue responses we understand that too.

  • Is VenueBook available in my city?

    VenueBook is currently available in New York City, San Francisco, Washington D.C. and Chicago. We are always looking to expand so look for us in your city soon!

  • What is ExpressBook?

    We’ve relaunched ExpressBook and changed a few things. With this new process, YOU build the proposal. Instead of going back and forth with a venue manager to discuss food and beverage options, you can pick them yourself. Customize and price an event right away before initiating a conversation with the venue manager. Minimize the back and forth so you can focus on the specifics of the event!

  • If your service is free to use, how does VenueBook make money?

    Our venue partners pay a marketing fee and in return we send them bookers. That way we can keep the lights on, but you don’t have to pay to use our site.

  • What type of events can I book?

    You can book any type of event! We have so many different types of venues and are always adding new spaces to our site that we’re confident you can find a great spot for any event! Our most common booked events are happy hours, company parties, corporate events, and private dinner parties.

  • How do I get started?

    Fill out a few basic details regarding your event on our homepage and click “search”. You’ll be shown a list of venues and you can narrow down your search results based on the type of event you are looking to hold, type of venue, venue location and other amenities.

  • What if I can’t find what I’m looking for?

    If you don’t find a venue that fits your needs, we encourage you to use our Concierge Service. They are well-versed in all of our venues and are happy to assist you with your venue needs. Contact them here.

  • What type of spaces can I find on VenueBook?

    We offer galleries, museums, restaurants, bars, raw spaces, lounges, and, yes, even yachts.

  • What should I budget for an event?

    Budget really depends on the type and location of your event, but ultimately it's up to you to decide how much money you're willing to spend. Most venues think in terms of per person costs (cost per head) and some even require a food and beverage minimum or space minimum, so keep that in mind when budgeting for an event. Do try to factor in tax and gratuity to your budget, as these costs can add up.

  • What is a “proposal”?

    A proposal is a document that the venue manager prepares for you containing the details and costs of your event. A venue manager can change a proposal until you’re happy with it. A proposal can be referred to as a contract or an event order as well.

  • There will be some people at my event who are under 21, can I still use VenueBook?

    It is up to the rules of the specific venue; generally if alcohol is being served, you should expect the guests of the event to be asked for identification to prove their age. However, if you are booking an event for a group of people that includes people under the age of 21, you might want to consider venues where you don’t have to be 21 to enter (that is, of course, unless you are looking to buy out the entire venue). State laws more than often prohibit underage people from entering certain “of age” venues because of licensing restrictions. Galleries and raw spaces are terrific alternative venues when booking an event that includes people under 21.

  • What is semi-private vs. private?

    Private means that your event will take place in a private area, think a back room, upstairs loft or a separate dining room for just your attendees. Semi-private indicates that you will have a section of the venue reserved for your group but others may share the space or walk through it to use other facilities in the venue (think: restrooms, coat check, etc...). This includes roped off areas or the bar section of a restaurant.

  • What is a raw space? What should I know about raw spaces?

    You can think of a raw space as a blank canvas. Raw spaces can range from warehouses to lofts and they are great for the Pinterest enthusiast. When booking a raw space you will have to arrange all aspects of the event yourself. You’ll have to decorate the space, bring in your own caterer, rent furniture and arrange any other aspects of the event that you’d like covered. Generally, a raw space just charges the fee to rent the space and every other part of the event is your responsibility.

  • What is a full venue buyout?

    This means you purchase and reserve the whole venue. Only your event will be taking place during the time you’ve booked. Full venue buyouts are great for corporate holiday parties and large networking events.

  • How do I book an event?

    First step is finding the venue that fits your needs. Once you have finalized the event details with your venue, you will need to officially sign your contract and pay your deposit through VenueBook to secure your reservation. Without your deposit, the space isn't truly held for your party.

  • Who is my contract with, the venue or VenueBook?

    Your contract is with the venue, so you are subject to their legal terms and conditions.

  • Can I submit more than one request?

    You can absolutely submit more than one request!

  • How far in advance do I have to book an event?

    We recommend booking your event at least three weeks ahead of time. However, the further out you book the better chance you’ll have of getting the venue you want.

  • What happens after I submit my request?

    The venue manager will review your request and determine if they can host your event. If they accept your request, they will put together a proposal based on the event details you provided. If you’re using ExpressBook, your customized proposal will be sent to the venue manager to accept, decline, or edit. If they accept and/or edit the proposal, it will be sent back to you for final confirmation. If they decline your request, you will be notified right away with a reason why.

  • When can I expect to hear from a venue manager

    We encourage all venue managers to respond to requests in 24 hours. If you send a general inquiry, the venue has three (3) business days to send a proposal. Through ExpressBook, the venues have one (1) business day to accept, decline or edit the proposal you send. You will always be notified right away if a venue declines an event request.

  • What are my options once I’ve received a proposal?

    If a proposal is sent back to you from a venue manager, you have the option to accept or decline. If you decline because the proposal isn’t quite right, you should follow up with the changes you’d like. This will help a venue manager send you a more accurate one. If you decline because you’re no longer interested in this venue, contact our Concierge Team. They can help you find another venue!

  • Why haven’t I received a proposal from a venue?

    If it’s been more than the allotted time (3 business days for general inquiries and 1 business day for ExpressBook requests), you’ll receive an email notification that the venue did not respond to your request. We encourage you to revisit our site to find another great venue!

  • Can I modify the proposal after I sign it?

    If you need to make any changes to the proposal once the contract has been signed, you will need to reach out to the venue manager to discuss.

  • How do I know if a venue is available for my event?

    There are several ways to check availability. If you’re at the beginning of your search, you can select a date and start time, and enter your guest count and budget to filter through our list of venues. Or, if you have gotten to a venue page through another way, you can see the availability of each space by filling out the missing information.

  • How do I know when my event is booked?

    Your event is booked once you’ve signed your proposal and you’ve paid your deposit (both of which are done via our platform). You’ll also see your event’s status change to “event booked.”

  • I booked an event, now what?

    Your job is done. Make sure you invite your guests and finalize any last minute details with the venue.

  • What if I need to make changes to my event after it’s been booked? Need to change headcount? Forgot you had a vegan attending?

    If you need to make any changes to the event once the contract has been signed you will need to reach out to the venue manager to discuss any changes.

  • Can I order food/beverage at my event that is not included in the package?

    Yes, if you’d like to add additional food or beverages during your event you may but just know that there will be an extra charge in addition to the contracted amount of the event. Typically, these charges are included in your final bill.

  • What should I do if I never hear from a venue manager?

    If you don’t hear back from a venue manager after 24 hours, you can reach out to [email protected]

  • What if I need help booking my event?

    If you don’t find a venue that fits your needs, or you have questions regarding where/how to book, please reach out to our Concierge team. They are well-versed in all of our venues and are happy to assist with your venue needs. Contact them here.

  • What if there is a venue I would like to book via your platform but it is not listed?

    We would love to hear your suggestions! Please contact [email protected] and request that we list your favorite venues. We will forward that request to our Venue Acquisition team.

  • Where do I view the details for my event?

    If you log into VenueBook and select “My Events” in the dropdown menu (click your name in the right hand corner), all of the events for which you have requested a quote will be displayed in reverse chronological order. You can click on each event or look to the right of each event and see the status of the event.

  • How do I find my contract?

    After logging into VenueBook, go to “My Events” and select the specific event from your list and then click “View Proposal”. This will take you to the proposal/contract page, where you can sign the proposal or view your contract with the venue. Alternatively, you can access the proposal or contract by clicking on the original proposal link within the email sent to you from the venue.

  • What if I need to modify the contract?

    If you need to modify your contract then you will need to reach out to the venue manager directly. They will make the requested changes and send you an updated copy to sign. The latest contract signed will be the contract of record for the event.

  • How do I make menu selections for my event?

    Within your event, select the Menu tab. On the Menu tab you can make selections from items already offered by the venue, or you can select items from the full menu and add them to your proposal. If you’re using ExpressBook, you can choose initial menu selections before you even send the request to the venue!

  • How do I get in touch with the venue?

    There are two ways to get in touch with a venue. If you are inquiring about an event, you can submit a request from the venue’s profile page on VenueBook.com. If you’ve already requested a venue, you can message the venue directly through VenueBook from the “Messages” tab in your event. If you’d like to leave comments on your proposal, you can click the chat bubbles next to a line item that needs to be modified and the venue manager will see your comments.

  • What if I need to send something to the venue?

    In your event, select the “File” tab. From here you can upload documents or images under 2MB in size. You can send and receive files between you and the venue manager. This can be used for things such as corporate logos that need to be added to menus.

  • Can I cancel my event?

    If you’re using ExpressBook, you can cancel any time before you accept the final proposal. If you have already signed and contracted the event, you will need to abide by the Legal Terms you agreed to in the contract. You can find the terms from the “Proposal” tab in the Event. Some venues may add a cancellation fee for early termination, or may hold you accountable for a portion of the value of the contract. If you are still unsure of the conditions or cancelation policy, contact the venue directly to discuss how to move forward.

  • If I cancel my event, will I get my deposit back?

    Please refer to the terms of the contract that you signed with the venue. The cancellation and refund policies differ depending on the venue. Some venues may assess a cancellation fee for early termination, or may hold you accountable for a portion of the value of the contract. If you are still unsure of the conditions or cancelation policy, contact the venue directly to discuss how to move forward.

  • What is a digital signature?

    A digital or electronic signature is a legally binding method of signing documents electronically over the internet. When a venue sends you a proposal you will be asked to Accept or Decline the proposal, at which point you will digitally sign your name on the proposal transforming it into a legal event contract. Digital or electronic signatures are recognized in Federal Law under the “Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act”. “ESIGN” stipulates that no contract or agreement can be denied or unenforced for having an electronic signature.

  • What type of payment can I use?

    The initial deposit for your event can be paid for online via any major credit card. If you need to change your payment method after booking, simply contact the venue and they can update their records accordingly. Or you can work out a different payment method with the venue.

  • What will you do with my credit card and billing information?

    We use Stripe as our payment processor. Stripe is the payment processor trusted by companies such as OpenTable, AirBnB and Uber to give their businesses the potential to collect payments anywhere, anytime. Stripe is Level 1 PCI-compliant and ensures your credit card info is secure when you are paying venues online.

  • What if I want to split payments for the event?

    The initial deposit for your event can be paid for via any major credit card. If you’d like to split the payment for the event you can work with the venue to do that once the contract is finalized.

  • Is tax and gratuity included or do I need to tip onsite?

    This will be determined between you and the venue. If tax and gratuity is included in the contract then no need to tip onsite (unless you want to add extra for exceptional service). However, if you don’t see either included in the contract then you will need to do that onsite.

  • What is your refund policy?

    If you need to cancel your event for any reason after signing your contract, you will have to refer to the legal terms of your signed proposal. If you’re using ExpressBook, you can cancel for free any time before you sign a contract. You can find the terms in the “Contract/Proposal” tab of your event. Some venues may add a cancellation fee for early termination, or may hold you accountable for a portion of the value of the contract. If you are still unsure of the conditions or cancelation policy, contact the venue directly to discuss how to move forward.

  • When do I pay for my event?

    When you sign the contract with the venue, your credit card will be charged in the amount of your deposit. Future payment due dates will be set by the venue, which you can access in the “Payments” section of your event.

  • How much do I pay for my event?

    You pay the amount that is specified in your event proposal/contract. For ExpressBook proposals, you will be required to pay the initial deposit of 25% in order to sign the contract and secure your requested space. However, if you incur incidental charges during your event, your final bill will be updated to reflect these extra services.

  • When will I be charged?

    When you sign the contract with the venue, your credit card will be charged in the amount of your deposit. Future payment due dates will be set by the venue, which you can access in the Payments section of your event.

  • Will I be charged if my Booking Request isn’t accepted?

    No, if your event is not accepted you will not be charged.

  • Where can I access the payment screen?

    When logged into VenueBook, you can make a payment by going to the “Payments” tab or the “Final Bill” tab in your event. This will guide you to submit payment using a Credit Card or other method preferred by the venue. You can also access your receipts and proposal from your event if you ever need proof of payment and an itemized breakdown of your event.

  • Why won't my credit card go through?

    The most common issues around paying for your event involve entering the wrong credit card or CVV number. Simply, double check all of your credit card information and confirm you’ve entered it correctly. Some internet browsers also auto-complete incorrect information in Credit Card fields. Try manually re-entering your CC information and see if that resolves the problem.

    • "General Error: Gateway Rejected: AVS" - Means that the billing zip code is incorrect.
    • "General Error: Gateway Rejected: CVV": Means that the CVV number is incorrect. The CVV number for Mastercard, Visa and Discover will be the last three digits on the back of the card. The CVV for American Express is the four numbers on the front of the card.
    • If you receive a 4-digit decline code, that is referring to authorization declines which come from your bank. Below are typical error codes and reasons why the card may have been declined.
      • If you receive a code that is a Hard decline it is strongly suggested that you use another form of payment as that card will not make it through our secure gateway.
      • If you receive a code that is a Soft decline we recommend waiting 24 hours before attempting the transaction again, this will allow your bank time to rectify any issues.

    Please note: If you receive a decline that requires you to call your bank to have the transaction approved make sure to have them approve the specific transaction for which you received the decline.

  • Where can I view my final bill?

    After the event has happened and the venue manager has finalized your balance in VenueBook, you can login and view your balance in the “Final Bill” tab. This shows you any remaining payments and allows you to make a final payment on your event.

  • What payment processing system do you use and is it safe?

    We use Stripe. Stripe is the payment processor trusted by companies such as OpenTable, AirBnB and Uber to give their businesses the potential to collect payments anywhere, anytime. Stripe is PCI-compliant and ensures your credit card info is secure when you are paying venues online.

  • What is ExpressBook?

    ExpressBook flips everything back to you, the client. When you choose to book through ExpressBook, you craft your own proposal to send to a venue manager. In doing so, you can eliminate much of the back and forth communication between you and a venue manager. You can pick and choose menu options and event details. If you don’t see something you need, you can shoot additional details over with the proposal. Book events faster than ever with ExpressBook.

  • How long does the venue have to respond?

    The venue has one (1) business day (Monday - Friday) to respond to your ExpressBook request. For example, if you sent your ExpressBook request on Monday, you should hear back the next day. If your sent your ExpressBook request on Friday or on the weekend, you should hear back by Monday.

  • The venue did not respond back to my ExpressBook - now what?

    If you have not heard back from the venue within one (1) business day (Monday - Friday) of your request submission, a member of our Concierge Team will reach out to help you find another perfect venue. While we’d prefer our venues answer every lead, our Concierge Team is here to help you in case some venue managers fall short of our expectations.

  • My ExpressBook request was declined by the Venue - why?

    Sometimes a venue cannot accommodate your event for a variety of reasons: the venue was not a great fit for your event needs, or their space has already been contracted for another event (spaces book up quickly during peak seasons!). If you need help finding a venue that would be a better fit for your event, feel free to reach out to our Concierge Team.

  • What forms of payment do you accept for ExpressBook?

    When submitting your ExpressBook request, we accept any major credit card. If you need to change your payment method after booking, simply contact the venue and they can update their records accordingly.

  • When do I get charged for the event?

    You will not be charged for an event until you sign the finalized proposal. Once you contract the event, your card will be charged 25% of the event total. Future payments, such as the remaining balance of your event or any additional add-ons you select for your event, will be set by the venue. You can access this in the "Payments" section of your event.

  • When I enter my credit card, is the space held for my time and date?

    We use your credit card information as a way to show the venue that you’re serious about booking quickly. The space is temporarily held in our system and other users cannot book through ExpressBook on your date and time during the 24 hour window. However, because some venues use other methods to solidify dates, we cannot guarantee that the spot will be completely held. Once the event is contracted, the space is held and cannot be booked through any other booking method.

  • How can I cancel my pending ExpressBook request with a venue?

    You can cancel your pending ExpressBook request prior to officially contracting the event. You can do this by simply going to that event file in your account and clicking “Cancel”. This will send an alert to the venue that you’ve changed your mind and would like to cancel your request. Please refer to our Cancellation & Refund policy for ExpressBook for additional details.

  • What if I need to cancel my ExpressBook event after the Venue has approved/confirmed it? What is the refund policy?

    If you need to cancel your pending ExpressBook request, you can do so from the My Events page or by contacting [email protected]. If you need to modify your booked event, please reach out directly to the Venue via Messages for your Event. Any modifications may be subject to price adjustments.

    You can cancel your ExpressBook request for free any time before you sign the finalized contract. Once you sign the contract, your card will be charged the 25% deposit. If you decide to cancel after you sign, you will have to abide by the Terms and Conditions mentioned in the venue’s contract.

    Cancellation of ExpressBook event 14 days or fewer before event start time

    Any ExpressBook cancelled by a Client fourteen (14) calendar days, or fewer, prior to the start time of the event is non-refundable and the Client will forfeit the initial deposit paid and any subsequent payments made for the Event.

    Cancellation of ExpressBook event 15 days or more before event start time

    Any ExpressBook cancelled by a Client fifteen (15) calendar days, or more, prior to the start time of the event is fully refundable and the Client will receive a 100% refund of the initial deposit and any subsequent payments made for the Event.

    Note: All payments, including the initial deposit, must have been made using the VenueBook platform. VenueBook is not liable for any payments made outside of the platform.

    VenueBook reserves the right to make adjustments to its cancellation and refund policy from time to time in accordance with the notice provisions for changes set out in the Terms of Service.

  • What should I do if my card is declined when I try to submit payment?

    If your card is declined, we will surface the specific reason for the card decline. Most of the time, the card was declined due to an input error (e.g. incorrect card number, wrong CVV, expired card, etc.) For your protection, banks may decline large transactions. If this occurs, please call your card issuer’s customer service number on the back of your credit card to pre-authorize this transaction. Reference "InstEvent Inc, DBA VenueBook" and the specific charge amount.

  • Why would I want to be featured on your site?

    VenueBook connects venues with corporate and social clients in one targeted place; cutting through the noise of the internet and providing your venue with direct exposure to prospective, qualified clients to help fill up your events calendar.

  • What types of venues are on VenueBook?

    We offer everything from cozy intimate dining nooks to larger customizable raw spaces.

  • Is there a fee to be listed on your site?

    There is no fee to be listed on the site and no fee for leads submitted. You only pay a commission when you book a lead that comes via VenueBook.

  • How do I list my venue on your site?

    Reach out to [email protected] and one of our Account Executives will help you get started.

  • How long will my venue be on the site?

    Your venue will be on the site until you decide you’d like it taken down. Venues that don’t adhere to our service level requirements will be reviewed by account management to determine their marketplace status.

More Questions?

Contact our support center anytime by reaching out to [email protected].