So we all have seen the Vonage commercial knocking the bundling of services as the premier way of saving money. While this may or may not be true in the communications world…I can tell you that bundling as many items as you can from a rental company is absolutely an incredible way to ensure you get the best price, with least amount of effort.
We all are “bargain shoppers” inherently. We want to ensure the best price on everything, all the time. Especially in the economic climate we are in now, every dollar saved/maximized truly counts! However, most will spend an enormous amount of time trying to shop different rental companies to save that $.05 per fork or $.50 per table by line item shopping and beating up every vendor over their individual pricing. The largest problem with this type of approach is you lose the pleasure of actually planning the event to be all that you want it to be, in an effort to save a dollar…and yes, planning a major event can be enjoyable and stress free. I will discuss the keys to a enjoying the planning of a large event in a future post. Here are the other problems with “LISS” (Line Item Shopping Syndrome).
- You spend enormous amount of time shopping around trying to find out everyone’s “best price” for each item. The largest stress creator in organizing an event is the time that most people spend on doing so. Spend less time planning and spend more time enjoying.
- You will often find the price difference negligible on most things and considerable on others when based on individual items. This tends to give the incorrect perception that one company’s pricing is out of whack with the others. Truth is that depending on a number of factors, not every rental company can offer every item at the same price. It isn’t a matter of intent, so much as it is capability. Overall this can lead to misguided perceptions of different companies and their overall way of doing business.
- You find that companies that gave super strong pricing on certain items are not local and any savings will be lost in travel or delivery of getting the items in your possession. Delivery charges are a hard cost companies incur and often can’t be discounted (p.s. I highly encourage paying for delivery for the sake of simplifying the delivery, setup and pickup process).
- Overall, if you truly assess your time, effort and the actual cost of all rentals…the savings (if any) won’t be worth the investment you made personally.
While you can save money in some cases by shopping this way, I encourage you to research a few companies and sit down with one that has impressed you and plan your event end to end. Let them then give you a “package” or “bundled’ price. Then shop that complete package with another company. The more you bring to the table, the greater the ability of any company to see the overall value of your deal and work harder for it. Think about it…would you fight hard for a customer that only wants to rent your forks because they are $.o5 less than the other guy…or would you rather get super aggressive to win the entire wedding package? Exactly!
Lastly, since rental companies have tremendous experience in planning events, some will have pre-configured packages that make your planning super easy by giving you a list of most of what you will need and you merely polish and tweak from there. PLUS, you never know what additional stuff they may throw in for FREE!