How to Choose an Event Planning School
When it comes to finding the right event planning school, there are a lot of things to consider. For instance, what should the school criteria include? How can you tell if an event planning academy is reputable or not? In this article, we’ll show you how to choose an event planning school that’s right for YOU and your career goals!
So, let’s get started, shall we?
PRO TIP: What qualities should event planners have? Here are the 10 must-have skills you’ll need in order to succeed!
How To Choose an Event Planning School: In-Person Vs. Online
When it comes to choosing an event planning school, you have 2 options: in-person or online. So, let’s start by breaking down the pros and cons of each type of event planning certificate program…
In-Person Event Planning School
- You have the opportunity to build a strong rapport with your classmates and instructors.
- You’re able to get immediate feedback on your performance and progress.
- It may be easier to find dogs to work on during your classes.
- In-person event planning courses often offer more comprehensive and hands-on training than online options.
- It can be expensive to travel to/from the school (especially these days, with the current price of gas).
- In general, in-person programs are usually a lot more expensive.
- The class schedule may not be flexible enough to properly accommodate your work/life schedule.
- Moreover, you may not be able to find a program close to home.
Online Event Planning School
- Online programs are a lot more affordable (e.g., lower tuition, payment plan options, etc.).
- You can study on your own schedule and at your preferred pace.
- There are a lot of online programs to choose from, from foundation courses to advanced/specialty courses.
- With the wrong kind of online school, it can be more difficult to get feedback on your progress.
- You may have less interaction with classmates and instructors.
- If you’re not self-disciplined, it can be easy to get distracted while studying at home.
So, which type of learning environment is right for you?
If you feel like you’d benefit from the structure of an in-person course, and want to be able to build relationships with classmates and instructors, then this is probably the route for you. On the other hand, if you’re looking for an affordable option that allows you to study at your own pace, then an online event planning school would be the better choice.
For the purpose of this article, let’s assume that moving forward, you want to learn more about picking the right online event planning school…
How To Find an Online Event Planning School: Must-Have Criteria
When you’re looking for an online event planning school, there are certain criteria that the school itself should meet. Here are just some of the things to look for:
✅ The Institution Is Properly Accredited
In this day and age, there are a LOT of scammers out there. Thus, when you’re looking at online event planning schools, be sure to check and see if the institution is properly accredited. Meaning, it has been evaluated by an outside agency and determined to meet certain standards.
QC Event School, for example, holds an A+ ranking from the Better Business Bureau and is approved by the International Live Events Association (ILEA). Furthermore, it’s a faculty of QC Career School – and this company has been a trustworthy pioneer of distance learning since 1984!
✅ The School Has a Legitimate Website
When you’re looking at an online event planning school, take a look at its website. Does it look legit? Is it user-friendly? Are the school’s policies, procedures, and course information easy to find?
As a rule of thumb, a company’s website can tell you a LOT about that company as a whole. If it’s poorly designed and/or lacks essential information, that should be considered a red flag!
QC Event School’s website is designed with the student in mind. Not only is it incredibly easy to navigate – it has all the information you need, right at your fingertips!
✅ The Instructors Are Qualified
When you’re looking at an online event planning school, make sure to also check out the qualifications of the instructors. For instance, do they have the experience and expertise needed to be teaching this course? Moreover, are they properly certified?
The event and wedding planning tutors at QC Event School are exceptionally qualified! Not only do they have years of experience in the professional industry – they’re all reputably certified, too!
✅ The School Is On Social Media
When you’re looking at online event planning schools, the next thing to do is see if they’re active on social media. This is a great way to get an idea of the school’s overall culture, what kind of community it has, etc. Not to mention that these days, if a business isn’t on social media, that’s super sus.
QC Event School is very active on social media! We love connecting with our students/alumni, as well as sharing tips, tricks, blog posts, and useful resources. Plus, we frequently post pictures and videos of our happy students/grads and the beautiful celebrations they’ve put together for clients!
Interested in checking out our social media?
Connect with us here:
✅ Their Support Team Is Actually Reachable
Another thing to look for in online event planning schools is the accessibility of their Customer Support Team. Are they easy to get a hold of? Do they respond to questions in a timely manner? Are they friendly – and even more importantly, are they actually helpful?
The Student Support Team at QC Event School is amazing! They’re available 7 days a week by phone, email, and live chat, depending on your preference. Not to mention, they’re always quick to respond to any inquiries or issues you might have.
It also helps that they’re super friendly and more than happy to help you out, no matter what the concern might be!
Event Planning Course Criteria
Now that we’ve gone over some things to look for in an online event planning school, let’s talk about the actual criteria the program itself should meet. Look for the following when conducting your research:
✅ The Event Planning Course Offers a Solid Curriculum
When you’re looking at online event planning courses, make sure to check out the curriculum of the course itself.
For instance, does it cover everything you’re hoping to learn? Has the program been designed by experienced professionals? Does it cater to beginner event planners, experienced planners, or both?
QC Event School offers a comprehensive list of event planning certification programs that cover all of the following areas of the industry:
- Event and wedding planning
- Private event planning
- Wedding planning
- Destination wedding planning
- Luxury event and wedding planning
- Corporate event planning
- Event decor
- Floral design
- Virtual events training
- Accelerate your business workshop
- Travel and tourism
- Promotional event planning
- Festivals and live events
Check out the full curricula for QC’s self-paced, online certification courses here!
✅ The Course Is Affordable
Of course, you want to make sure you’re getting your money’s worth when you sign up for an online event planning course. But this does NOT mean you have to break the bank! The truth is, there are plenty of affordable online options out there.
QC Event School’s online programs are some of the most affordable you’ll find! Plus, we offer a low monthly payment plan option. As a result, you can spread out the cost of the course over time! Plus, the moment you enroll in one QC course, every other course is then available to you at a whopping 50% off!
To learn more about the cost (and payment options) of QC Event School’s courses, click here!
✅ Your Training Offers Case-Scenario Experience
When considering the different event planning courses offered online, make sure to find one that actually offers some sort of training that reflects what you’ll be dealing with out in the real world. After all, what’s the point of taking a course if it won’t prepare you for the professional industry?
All of QC Event School’s courses offer students countless opportunities to put their skills to the test via case scenario assignments. For example, some assignments will get you to research real, local vendors and suppliers in your area. Others will present you with realistic client problems (many of which, you’ll likely face throughout your career) and challenge you to come up with effective, timely solutions.
✅ You’ll Get Business Training As Well
If your goal is to start your own event planning business, then it’s important to find a course that also offers business training as part of its curriculum. After all, there’s a lot more to starting a successful event/wedding planning business than just knowing how to organize a celebration!
All of QC’s courses offer students the opportunity to learn everything they need to know about starting and running their own business. From building a clientele to marketing your services, our programs cover it all!
✅ You’ll Get a Legitimate Certification Upon Graduating
When you complete an online event planning course, you should be proud of your accomplishment! What better way to show off your new skills – and certification – than by displaying it for the whole world to see?
As we mentioned earlier, QC Event School is a well-respected and accredited institution. As such, when you graduate from any of our courses, you’ll receive either a certificate of completion or a globally-recognized certification + designation! The following QC courses will provide an internationally-recognized certification:
- Event & Wedding Planning Course – International Event and Wedding Planning Professional™ (IEWP®) certification/designation
- Private Event Planning Course – International Event Planning Professional™ (IEPP™) certification/designation
- Wedding Planning Course – International Wedding Planning Professional™ (IWPP®) certification/designation
- Corporate Event Planning Course – International Corporate Event Planning Professional™ (ICPP®) certification/designation
- Event Decor Course – International Event Decorating Professional™ (IEDP™) certification/designation
- Travel & Tourism Course – International Travel and Tourism Certification (ITTC™) certification/designation
- Festival and Live Events Workshop – International Festivals and Live Events Planning Professional™ (IFLP®) certification/designation
Deciding On an Online Event Planning Academy: Red Flags To Avoid
Now it’s time to move onto the red flags you’ll want to watch out for. After all, choosing the wrong school can be a very costly mistake – both in terms of your time and money.
When it comes to the shady schools out there, keep an eye out for the following warning signs…
🚩 The Institution Is Unaccredited
As we mentioned earlier, one of the benefits of QC Event School is our accreditation. But there are many online event planning schools out there that are not accredited. While this doesn’t necessarily mean they’re a bad school, it’s still something to be aware of.
After all, if a learning institution isn’t properly recognized, it could mean that:
- The school doesn’t adhere to certain quality standards
- They are not properly licensed
- The institution might not have been around for very long
- It’s not a legitimate school
Obviously, all of these are totally valid concerns! So, if you come across an online event planning school that’s unaccredited, make sure to do your due diligence before enrolling.
🚩 The Event Planning School Has a Poor Reputation Online
Another red flag is to watch out for is if the school has a bad reputation (both online or otherwise). For example, if it has more negative reviews than positive ones, countless complaints, etc., then the school likely has poor notoriety.
Of course, every institution – whether online or in-person – is going to have at least a few unhappy students. That’s just the way it is. But if the majority of what you see online is negative, then that’s definitely something to be wary of.
The best way to get an accurate idea of a school’s reputation is by reading reviews from multiple sources. This way, you can get an accurate, well-rounded picture of what people are saying about them.
Curious about what people are saying about QC Event School? Check out our Facebook reviews here!
🚩 You’re Promised “Quick and Easy” Results
When it comes to choosing an event planning school, you’ll want to be careful of any promises that seem too good to be true. For instance, if a school claims you’ll learn everything you need to know about the industry in less than a month, then that’s probably not realistic.
Now, we’re not saying that it’s impossible to become a certified planner quickly. After all, some people pick things up faster than others and will be able to finish their program in less time. But in general, it’s going to take more than just a month to acquire all the skills needed for long-term success.
Thus, if a school is making any grandiose promises, be sure to do your research before enrolling. The last thing you want to do is waste your time and money on something that’s not actually going to work.
🚩 The Course Tuition Is Dirt Cheap
If a school’s tuition fees are ridiculously low, that’s usually a sign to run for the hills! Typically, decent quality event planning courses are going to cost a few hundred dollars at the VERY least. And the reality is, most high-quality programs will cost anywhere from $500 to $1200.
Now obviously, there are always exceptions to the rule. But if a school is claiming that they can train you for less than $100, that’s a MAJOR red flag! In most cases, if the price seems too good to be true, that’s because it probably is.
So, just make sure to do your research before enrolling in any course.
🚩 You Have To Pay Extra For Your Actual Event Planning Certification
Next, you should also be wary of online schools that make you pay extra for your certification. The fee for your certification should be included within the cost of tuition.
If a school is trying to make you pay extra for it, then it’s more than likely a scam. You should never have to buy your certification after you’ve earned it. That just doesn’t many any sense!
So, as we keep suggesting, do your research first. This way, you can make sure the certification provided is included in the cost of tuition before enrolling in any course!
🚩 The Course Only Offers Textbook Learning
When you’re looking for an event planning school, you’ll want to make sure they offer more than just textbook learning. While it’s important to have a foundation in the theoretical knowledge, you’ll also want to make sure you’re getting some practical experience through case scenario, real-world assignments.
Ideally, the school should offer both classroom-based learning AND case-scenario exercises. Because as a result, you’ll then be able to graduate with the confidence needed to actually organize events – and not just the theory behind it.
Basically, if an institution is only offering textbook learning, it’s not going to be the best fit for you. This is why we highly recommend doing your research and finding a program that offers a combination of both classroom-based learning and some sort of real-world approach.
How To Become an Event Planner
Now that you know how to choose the right event planning school, it’s time to start your journey to becoming a certified professional! Just remember to do your research, ask around for recommendations, and ensure that the program you choose is properly accredited.
We also STRONGLY encourage you to check out our Ultimate Step-By-Step Guide to Becoming an Event Planner! This article will break down all of the following information:
- The job description of a professional event planner
- Industry demand
- Necessary qualifications
- Salary expectations
- The rise of virtual and hybrid events
- The 5 C’s of event management
- How to become an event planner in 6 easy steps (even if you don’t have any experience)
Other Useful Resources You Should Definitely Bookmark
If you’re serious about becoming an event planner (and we know you are), then we also recommend bookmarking the following resources as well:
- 7 Important Skills Every Event Planner Should Have
- The Pros and Cons of Working As an Event Planner
- Should YOU Start an Event Planning Business?
- How Much Does It Cost To Start an Event Planning Business?
- 11 Niche Ideas For an Event Planning Business
- How To Start an Event Planning Business From Scratch
- The 10 Most Profitable Careers in Event Planning
- How To Get Clients As an Event Planner
So, there you have it – everything you need to know about choosing the right online event planning school for your needs! We hope this article was helpful in guiding you through this exciting process.
Do you have any questions or thoughts? Let us know in the comments down below. And as always, thank you so much for reading!
Happy planning! 💕