Posts tagged with "planning"

Divorce and marriage illustration by Kaelen Felix for 360 MAGAZINE

Wedding Must-Haves

Happy wedding season! Let’s look into some marital must-haves to make your special day perfect.

  • DJ/Band

This is an absolute must-have, of course. Music plays such an important role in having a romantic, enjoyable, and memorable celebration. Finding a DJ isn’t super hard, and their services can vary in price. A band, on the other hand, can be a little more difficult. However, bands provide a different atmosphere to add to the day that the guests can look forward to.  Music keeps things lively and energetic, and is sure to get everyone dancing.

  • Barda

Whether guests pay for drinks or you provide an open tab, having a bar is very necessary. Having both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks for guests during the reception is a great party idea.

  • Photographer/Videographer

Photographers have always been a necessity for weddings. They capture beautiful moments to always look back on to remember the wonderful day. Something that this generation has made more popular for weddings is videographers. Personally, looking back at videos is one of the best ways to relive a memory. Videographers not only film, but also put together a romantic short films to re-watch the most precious moments.

  • All You Can Eat Appetizers

Who wants to celebrate when everyone is hangry? Having consistent appetizers is so important to keep guests happy. Sometimes, people don’t love sitting down for a huge meal–especially when drinking and dancing. Having small bites will keep everyone happy.

  • A Playlist

Make sure you have an idea of what songs you do and don’t want to play. Don’t stress about it on the day of!

  • Wedding Direction Signs

Not every wedding needs direction signs, and honestly, sometimes guests don’t even bother looking. However, providing directions to parking, restrooms, reception, food, ceremony and other wedding venue locations could be beneficial for guests.

  • Wedding Menu

If you choose to have a buffet or serve the same meal to every guest, the wedding menu is not needed. However, wedding menus can be beneficial and guests will appreciate having dish options.

  • Sparklers

Sparklers are usually used for the bride and groom’s grand exit. They add a beautiful and spectacular touch to moments, photos and videos.

  • Plan For Inclement Weather

If the wedding is planned for outdoors, it’s always important to think of a plan B, just in case the weather changes. Coming up with a backup plan will save you the stress.

  • Just Relax

Forgetting about materialistic things for a moment. Remember to enjoy every step of the wedding planning journey and your special day. Everything happens for a reason and will fall into place, no matter how stressful it seems at the time.

illustration by rita azar for use by 360 magazine

How To Save Big On Road Trips

It’s that time of year again – road trip season! Now that travel is slowly starting again, consumers are looking for ways to save money. Personal finance sites such as MyBankTracker suggests that planning ahead is likely the best way to keep your wallet happy. The personal finance site recommends these strategies to help consumers save in its newest edition of How to Save on the Costs of a Road Trip.

Planning Can Help Save the Most

  • Maintenance – Get a maintenance check if you’re driving a personal vehicle. The cost of a check is likely much lower than that of abreakdown and tow.
  • Food – Brown bag a few meals and snacks, this could be healthier and less expensive than fast food.
  • Attractions – Look for bundle discounts or coupons online; if the road trip is to visit national parks, consider the $80 “America the Beautiful” annual pass instead of paying individual entrance fees.
  • Lodging – Camping is typically the go-to for road trips; this strategy can be less expensive than a hotel — even with the cost of rental camping gear, but be sure to make a reservation in advance.

Utilize Travel Credit Card Perks

  • Redeem credit card points – Use the points, but wisely! Some of the best travel credit card rewards programs allow points to be redeemed for a bonus value — or may be worth more if transferred to hotel loyalty programs. Think more free nights!
  • Auto rental collision coverage – Check what’s covered by credit card insurance, many make you eligible for reimbursement to cover collision or theft damage so you can decline the waiver from the rental company.
  • Roadside assistance – Some pay for services like tows, flat tires, fuel delivery and more.
  • Trip cancellation/interruption –This perk can provide a refund for prepaid, non-refundable expenses paid on the card. On a road trip, this will likely extend to lodging and scheduled tours.

It’s fun to be spontaneous, but not as fun for your bank account,” notes Simon Zhen, senior research analyst for the financial comparison site. “Rental cars are getting harder to find, flight prices are increasing, and gas prices continue to be elevated. The best cost-saving strategy is to plan at least a part of your trip in advance.”

About MyBankTracker
MyBankTracker is owned and operated by QuinStreet, Inc., a leader in providing performance marketplace technologies and services to the financial services and home services industries. QuinStreet is a pioneer in delivering online marketplace solutions to match searchers with brands in digital media. The company is committed to providing consumers with the information and tools they need to research, find and select the products and brands that meet their needs. MyBankTracker is a member of QuinStreet’s expert research and publishing division.

MyBankTracker is an independent comparison website helping consumers make smart banking and financial decisions. The mission is to match consumers to their perfect bank by providing and tracking in-depth information on more than 5,000 banks, credit unions and financial products. Using a combination of technology and money management expertise, MyBankTracker provides personal finance comparison tools and educates consumers to optimize their relationships with banks and lenders.

Apartment hacks illustration inside 360 MAGAZINE

Picking the Best Printer for Your Business

Starting a graphics and design business is easy as long as you do your market research properly beforehand. Besides knowing the legal requirements and other expected requirements, gathering the right tools for your business to run successfully is crucial. One of the most important items you need is a good printer. How do you settle for one when many of these items are being advertised in the market? Check out a few pointers to ensure that you choose the right printer to support your growing business.

Consider What Materials You Will Be Printing

You are likely going to be printing specific things on your printer. For instance, a black-only laser printer is excellent for when you need high quality black and white monochrome output for text proofing. On the other hand, when working with colors, you need something with color output offers. You can opt for an inkjet device or laser printer, and in other cases, a solid ink printer may work. If you print a lot of media and images, ink jet will still be the best option.

Gauge Output Resolutions

Whenever you print the final output, you will most likely need the results to be clean and crisp. A high-resolution device is what most professional graphics design businesses will need, especially if the goal is to end up with a proofing device that shows the design’s overall look. Always exercise caution when checking the resolution stats and specifications. Laser and inkjet printers may appear similar but have differ in their diverse technological functions.

Consider Your Output Usage

Have a list of all the things you intend to use the printer for when purchasing it. For instance, any heat-based lamination processes will require printers that are not inkjet. If you insist on using inkjets, then you should prepare for poor quality printouts. Any printer with a low melting point means that they are vulnerable to high temperatures. The last thing you want is a printout that is not moisture resistant.

Consider Page Sizes

Your printer choice should factor in the size of your output. For a letter or tabloid-sized pages, you should consider choosing broad-range devices. Always have the page size in mind when you are selecting a printer. Consider the specifications of the printer to know how much space it will print on paper.

Speeds Matter

Printer output speeds are crucial, especially if you choose a printer that will serve you in the workspace. Select a printer whose speeds match the work schedule you intend to handle once you are operating at optimum level. You should be prepared to pay more for extra fast speeds too. Choose a faster processor that can power heavy use proofer with the ability to print multiple page layouts with complex graphics. You can compare a catalog of office printers from Konica Minolta to choose the one that works best for you.

Many factors need to be considered when you are choosing a commercial printer. Make a point to go through this list, note the details, and check its boxes before making your decision. This way, you will be sure to find one that matches all of your needs.

Sustainable Vacation Planning: Tips and Tricks

Americans aren’t great at planning vacations. So much so that a large tourism industry group, the U.S. Travel Association, is encouraging workers to begin planning their getaways on Jan. 28, dubbed National Plan for Vacation Day

But planning a sustainable vacation – one with a small environmental footprint that is respectful of a destination’s people and culture – is an even taller task, said Jonathon Day, an associate professor in The School of Hospitality and Tourism Management in the College of Health and Human Sciences at Purdue University.

Jonathon Day, chair of the Travel Care Code initiative and author of the book, “An Introduction to Sustainable Tourism and Responsible Travel,” provided these tips for making vacations more socially and environmentally friendly:

Shop local: “Visit local businesses and enjoy authentic experiences from your destination. Visiting farm-to-table restaurants, local arts-and-crafts stores and farmers markets all make a bigger contribution to the communities you visit.”

Be waste wise: “Bring your best habits from home. Plan to recycle and minimize waste, particularly plastic waste when you travel.”

Limit your carbon footprint: “Be a fuel-efficient traveler or purchase carbon offsets for those flights you are taking.”

The challenges of building your own swimming pool

There are a few reasons why swimming pools have become so incredibly popular among homeowners. The first is, very obviously, the enjoyment factor. There’s nothing quite like having your own pool in the warmest months. The other is that having your own pool is great for relaxation and exercise, and a fantastic way of taking greater control over your fitness and health. However, there are some challenges involved with building your own swimming pool, and you should never start building your pool without assessing these factors first. Plan the right way and your pool could be the addition to your property that you always dreamed of.

Talk to experts
Property experts should always be your first port of call. Talk to local realtors about property prices in your area. They will know how much value a pool will add to your property. It could be that there is a little call for it in your area, but the majority of homes will be able to ask a slightly higher price with the addition of a pool.

  • For most people, a pool addition won’t add a significant amount to the overall property value, although it may well increase your property taxes.
  • You should be aiming at spending no more than 15% of your property’s total value, or you run the risk of overspending.

Setting up in advance
You will need to prepare if you decide to go ahead with your pool. Unless you have an army of helpers with shovels, it’s a good idea to make use of a mechanical digger. Pools can take a long time to dig by hand, and you’ll reduce your overall time with some industrial help. The other factor you’ll need to consider is what to do with the excess soil. You’re going to need to rid yourself of that soil, and this could be a big job. It’s often worth contacting a local dumpster company, with Dumpster Maxx offering a variety of Roll Off Dumpster Denver options to choose from. Make sure that you have the right equipment in place to prevent wasted time on your pool.

Design considerations
There are a number of different pool types available, so don’t just dive into a decision. Look at infinity pools and lap pools for the current trends, but you can even design your own style. Look at the space that you have available and think about local materials that are available for lower costs. Those materials can contribute a lot to your overall pool pricing, so if you can reduce the amount you pay due to local availability, all the better. The average pool can cost anywhere from $10k to $60k, so it’s important that you know your budget and work to the limitations that you set yourself.

Planning permission
In the majority of cases, a swimming pool is classified as a permitted development. You will need to remain within the boundaries of your property and behind the building line of your front-facing property. If you’re going for the addition of a designated building to cover your pool, you will usually have to stick to one-story only, although some states differ in their guidelines. Check with experts in local housing laws to make sure that you aren’t stopped halfway through your project.
Worst case scenario, you can always go with an popular pool alternative.

Working as a Party Planner

If you’re reading this, you’re probably thinking about getting into party planning. Odds are, you’ve always been a great host or a “get this party started” kind of person and you’re wondering if you should turn it into a career. You might be pondering: what’s working as party planner actually like? Is it all fun and parties all of the time?

The truth is, every day is different. On the busiest of days, you’re in the office from the crack of dawn and out at parties and launches until late hours of the night. It can be exhausting at times, but the thrill of seeing your event come off just as you’d planned it is totally worth it. Then there’s more low-key days, of course. Like any job, there are good days and there are bad days, and a lot of it is hard work.

So, what’s it all like?

Non-event Days
As mentioned before, not every day as a party planner will be an event day. Weird to think about, but more often than not you’ll have a non-event day than a party day. Fortunately, not every day is as jam packed as the ones where you’re up early and out late. Still, a regular day has you busy with tasks.

Clients and Planning
On these days you’re probably touching base with a lot of your clients as well as going over details for events. There’s researching and sourcing, holding meetings with the clients, and scoping out venue requirements as well as caterers.

Creating themes, schedules, and count-down to-do lists are standard in the event-planning world. The planning of events basically comes down to minute details, so you have to be on top of all aspects of the event. It’s also incredibly useful look into coverages for your events. You never know when elements of an event or client will go downhill. Business insurance for party planners is an absolute must. That includes invitations, arrivals, catering, decoration, staffing, and so much more.

Correspondence
Then there’s other normal work stuff like e-mailing, figuring out contracts, and coordinating teams. Because you’ll probably be working on a few projects at once, upkeep of communication with clients is crucial. You’ll have to set aside some time every day or so to update clients.

Additionally, there’s the part of the job where you have to seek out new clients. You’ll need to prepare proposals for your potential clients and probably do some promotion and marketing as well.

Event Day
Once event day comes around, you’ll be working flat out from the crack of dawn to the end of night (or, depending on when the event ends). Event day includes:

• Arriving early.
• Setting up and ensuring vendors and contractors are set up.
• Confirming staff knows what to do to make sure the event runs smoothly.
• Helping attendees in arrival.
• Overseeing the schedule and troubleshooting problems that arise with a backup plan (Always be sure to have a back-up plan!)
• Evaluating the event based on attendees, those who’ve commissioned the party, and yourself. Learn from each event to do better at the next.
• Be professional and excited. It’s imperative to wear a smile on event day! Even if you’re not feeling it, fake it ‘til you make it.

Overall, being a party planner can be different depending on the day. What you can definitely expect in the short term is a lot of planning and correspondence. Non-event day hours can look much like standard 9-5 days, but there’ll be longer days leading up to an event day. You’ll have a relatively flexible schedule, with some weekend days.

If you’ve made it this far, it might be time to seriously consider this as a career. Not everyone is gifted with hosting capabilities. With being a party planner, you’ll have flexibility in your schedule and freedom to pull off amazing events. Just know that you have to be meticulous in your planning, stay up to date with correspondence, and don’t skimp on business insurance.

With any luck, you’ll parties will be the talk of the town!