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  • admission fees to fairs

    Hi I've got a quick query - if you do a fair and pay a stall fee would you expect to have been told before hand by the organiser that they were also charging an admission fee?

  • #2
    Hi there, I think it usually tells you on the forms that you get sent or you download about admission prices and other goings on. I think it depends on the fair organizer and I think these things probably vary from fair to fair. The fair I did Saturday the stall holders had to pay for their teas and coffees, this is the first time that's happened for me.
    My blog http://setters-delight.blogspot.com

    Folksy http://www.justgifts.folksy.com

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    • #3
      I've just done two fairs where we did the send me a cheque thing then I heard nothing. One I rang to make sure it was still on. Other one I had the where it was details from last time.
      It makes me appreciate the forms and follow up emails the more organised organisers send.
      AnnieAnna

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      • #4
        hello

        Hello i done a craft fair on sunday it was £20 for the table and £1.25 for a cup tea,glad i took my own flask,and hubbie bought me a replacement flask later on,They did try and charge him admission, to which he replied im with a stall holder ,

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        • #5
          I have never charged entrance fees and the stallholders have always had free drinks all day.

          jenn

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          • #6
            I have done great fairs where an entrance fee is charged and some 'free' admission fairs which haven't been as good so I don't think the entrance fee caused a problem.

            Usually a free drink voucher is given to us but this is normally for only one drink each - we always take our own flask so this isn't an issue. I guess it also depends upon the size of the show - the cost of free drinks for 100 stallholders would be factored into the stall price eventually, I am sure!

            Perhaps it is also a North/South thing - I haven't done a show down here where all the drinks for stallholders is free!

            Every little bit helps and the cost of drinks/food can very quickly add up so your profits can soon disappear if you are spending on these too.
            Ali x

            Etsy Shop: aliscraftstudio.etsy.com
            Facebook: AlisCraftStudio
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            @AlisCraftStudio

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            • #7
              I would have expected to see details of entrance fee on the paperwork when you booked to do the fair.

              I always take my own food and drink just in case!

              Don't think I have ever attended a craft fair as a stall holder and got a free cup of tea actually! That would be nice!

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              • #8
                I have only done a very few fairs that have charged an admission fee, these have never been anything great, and i always think to myself i wish i had not done them!

                I never charge a fee on the door for people to look round, after all the less they pay the more they have to spend!

                I also have never done a fair or arranged a fair where the stall holders get free teas and coffees all day. The ones i arrange always get 1 free tea and coffee on arrival but the rest are chargeable, i only ever charge 50p though, which all goes to charity.

                This is a thing i find with each fair i attend they all seem to do the same really. But i would expect it to be on the form somewhere if people had to pay to get in, as now i would think twice about doing it when customers have to pay to even get through the door, unless they had a incentive, such as a free drink or something!
                Sparkles Events
                www.sparklesevents.co.uk

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                • #9
                  Katie,

                  It's a question of budget. Everything has to be paid for, including venue hire costs, table hire possibly, insurance, staffing, free refreshments if applicable, and not least the advertising and promotion. There may also be "fixed assets" such as extension cables, other electrical distribution equipment, signs, banners, etc.

                  Even your own hours should be paid for!

                  Now, if you have a venue with let's say space for 50 tables, and your hire cost for the venue are £400 including VAT, they have sufficient tables and your PLI for the year and say up to 12 events is £500 so about £42 per fair, before you spend a penny on advertising or promotion your costs for the event are £442, or about £9 per table. Assuming you manage to sell them all

                  Now, you won't see much change out of £500 if you do the advertising properly - local papers, a web presence of some sort, leaflets, posters, a decent sized banner (OK you should be able to recycle banners to a greater or lesser extent) and legal road signage ( AA-style used to be £22 each and a minimum order of 10 last time I used them).

                  That takes your costs to £19 a table.

                  Let's assume that you charge £25 for a table, you stand to make £6 per table, or £300. If you sell them all, and don't have one or two yourself, or allocate some to the catering operation...

                  How many hours work have you put in overall? Plus additional costs such as petrol, postage, stationery, wear and tear on your car and shoes, additional telephone bills, etc.

                  Bearing in mind the minimum hourly rate is in region of £6 an hour, I believe, that is pushing it at only 50 hours. Take just 15 for the day itself - crack of dawn until collapsed heap of an evening, leaves 35 hours to do all of the rest, from talking to newspaper advertising sales peeps to booking the venue to designing your adverts and leaflets, traipsing round delivering leaflets and even the dreaded letterbox runs, going to Tourist Information Offices and other places that might take your stuff, begging the local shop keepers to put it in their windows for only £1 a week, all of that plus the hassle and ear-ache on the day because you won't please everybody no matter what you do - and all for the minimum wage?

                  Personally I wouldn't.

                  And charging an entrance fee is an odd anomaly in many ways, but it now has a long tradition, and I don't think it puts many people off. All of the bigger fairs charge admission, not just craft fairs. I don't thing there are any public-facing shows at the NEC or Olympia which are free entry, although I could be wrong on the odd strange item.

                  And oddly enough, it also helps to keep out the nutter who just wants to come in to get warm or have a cheap cup of tea.

                  But I do agree, it should not come as a shock to anyone, stall holder or visitor.

                  Best wishes
                  David

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                  • #10
                    You can sweeten the pill. One fair gave you a 'free' cup of tea and a mincepie in exchange for your entrance ticket - which you paid for.
                    Another gave you a 'free' raffle ticket - as you paid to go in.

                    You go away with a nice warm glow. "Oh look. I've been given something."

                    As you do if the entrance fee is going towards holding up the village hall
                    or a hospice or a charity.

                    One up my street is have £1 off if you are dressed up. You think you are getting one over on the organiser as you float in as a fairy and don't care that the entrance is probably a pound higher than it would have been as you have a giggle with a reindeer, or elf, or Father Xmas.

                    There comes a point where enough's enough though. There is a craft fair I'd love to pop into out of curiosity but I'm blowed if I'm going to part with £7 to get in.

                    AnnieAnna

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                    • #11
                      well thanks to everyone for the replies - it's interesting to hear how fairs vary so much!

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                      • #12
                        I think some people are forgetting what craft fairs are really about these days! They are not ment to be for people to make hundreds at they are a hobby for most people!

                        David

                        I manage to arrange 16 true craft fairs a year each venue costing about 600 and holding 80 stands! And I still manage to only charge £15 per space! True crafters do not wish to spend more than this! I know I won't unless it's a huge 3 day event like the RAF bases! Yet I still manage to pay for the hall, propper advertising on websites. In papers, road signs, professional banners ect! no charge on the door to customers, free coffee or tea on arrival, and everyone is happy! Customers as they don't have to pay to go in and crafters as more people attend to look round and spend money!

                        But then I arrange mine as a crafter and for a hobby and to raise money for a very special charity so no I don't beleive you shod take a wage from it if this is the reason you are organising events! My job satisfaction is seeing a full hall of shoppers and happy crafters! But then I tend not to do the fairs that are arranged by people who arrange them to just pocket the money! I attend fairs from January to December every weekend most of the time Saturday and Sunday and I still have time to arrange fairs, work full time and run my partime nail tech business! And all the fairs I exhibit at are free admission and are all for charities of some sort!

                        I think everyone is entitled to their own opinion on this one and that opinion should be respected and not stamped down!

                        And like I said their should not be suprises on the day about people having to pay to look round!
                        Sparkles Events
                        www.sparklesevents.co.uk

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