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All the event industry lingo that you need to know

Sometimes, when you’re booking or organising an event, you’ll hear words and phrases that you might not have come across before. The world of events does have its own lingo, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get involved.

In fact, it should be completely the opposite. Instead of nodding your head and pretending you understand everything that venue managers, event organisers and party planners are saying, find out what all the key event industry lingo means:

event industry lingo

Event industry lingo and their meanings:

Across the board:

This means that price you’ve been quoted is all-inclusive, including service fees, gratuities and taxes.


Referring to the features and facilities that a venue, event space or location has.

Back of house (BOH):

The support and service behind the event or behind the scenes that the guests tend not to see.

Banquet style layout:

The most common set-up for events, the banquet style is circular tables with up to 10 chairs around each table.

Bottomless or free-flowing:

Bottomless or free-flowing drinks is a relatively new trend, following on from the idea of bottomless brunch with free-flowing fizz.

Boardroom style layout:

This is best suited to meetings and small conferences, mostly seen as tables set in the shape of the letter U.

Breakout rooms:

Breakout rooms and breakout spaces are a good addition for when you want to split up larger groups into smaller ones during meetings or training sessions.

Cabaret style layout:

Similar to Banquet style, Cabaret style sees round tables but with the audience sat in an arc facing forwards. This makes it a popular choice for training sessions, as well as awards nights and gala dinners.

Corkage fee:

If you are doing BYOB, then you may be charged a corkage fee for opening and serving a bottle of wine that isn’t from the venue.

Dry hire:

Dry hire is where rooms and venues are provided without any other features, meaning you would just be booking the venue and not things like catering, furniture, installation, and so on.

Hearing loop:

Otherwise known as an audio induction loop, a hearing loop is a sound system used for people wearing hearing aids.

Hire fee:

A hire fee is a set fee for the venue, room or event space you are considering. This may be per day, half day or per hour.

Minimum spend:

Some venues have a minimum spend, which means you don’t need to pay a separate hire fee but you must spend a specific amount on food or drink during the event. However, this can vary – some venues or event spaces will have both a hire fee and minimum spend on top.


A recce is simply a site visit, where you can become more familiar with a venue of your choice.

Set-up and de-rig:

This would be referring to the time and actions towards setting up the event, and then removing it all once the event has happened.

Wet hire:

This allows you to use both the venue space, as well as its catering, drinks and other in-house services.