Handy infographic covering event industry best practices and basics of laying out floor plans, incl. seating arrangements, for banquets, u-shape, & auditorium/theatre.

As an event planner, how important are floor plans and assigned seating arrangements? Shouldn’t guests choose where they sit? After all we are all adults!

In fact a YouGov survey conducted in February 2006 shows that an overwhelming 84% of wedding guests prefer assigned seating:

  • 51% preferred being assigned to a specific seat
  • 33% preferred being assigned to a table (can choose any seat)
  • 13% free for all – no seats or tables assigned
  • 3% does not apply, do not/would not attend a wedding reception

Unassigned seating sounds great in theory and it is certainly one less chore for any event planner but unfortunately it rarely works out so well in practice:

  • There may be an unseemly rush for the ‘good’ seats
  • It will take a lot longer to get guests seated. They may still be milling around while the food is being served
  • Your beautiful decor will be spoilt by people leaving their coats on chairs to reserve them
  • The last few guests end up walking around looking for seats, a bit like the unpopular kid at school lunch
  • Couples can get split up. It is not unknown for guests to end up eating outside the venue because they couldn’t get a seat together at a table
  • If people turn up uninvited (common in some cultures) they may take seats intended for your invited guests

It can also be a pretty miserable experience for guests, so regardless of the type of event you are planning, here is a handy infographic to make seating arrangements and event floor plans simple.

Event floorpans and seating arrangements infographic