Luxury picnics have become a lot more in vogue in recent years, particularly since the pandemic with this pop up picnic trend taking it one step further by adding fun design elements and decor to your breezy, laid-back lounging.
If you’re looking to understand everything about starting a luxury picnic business and industry, you’ll find all you to know below.
Thanks to social distancing measures, the idea of a luxury picnic has surged in popularity and with it luxury picnic businesses have been sprouting up due to this market demand and high returns.
What is a luxury picnic business?
A luxury picnic is when you and your friends or work colleagues congregate to enjoy some of the finest food and cocktails that money can buy in a relaxed, casual picnic space of your choosing.
The possibilities are endless and you can hire a team to set up a luxury picnic for your wedding proposal, bridal shower, bachelorette or rehearsal dinner. It could be as simple as a movie night in your backyard or even your micro wedding reception.
Some will start a business as a side hustle and others take a more professional approach and partner with vendors to provide the food and beverages.
Many luxury picnic companies offer packages from bubbly and snacks to full-scale spreads with some businesses offering cheese boards specifically or other items including caviar, Iberian ham, wagyu beef, truffle delicacies and more, washed down with a glass of Champagne, Aperol Spritz or your drink of choice.
In return for this lavish display of the finest nosh and drinks, the client will pay the luxury picnic business owner anything from $250 -$10,000, depending on your preferred style, taste and the number of people you are planning for.
This niche is quite profitable too with medium-priced luxury picnics earning between $12,000 to $15,000 per month whilst smaller startup owners offering more basic packages can earn between $5,000 to $6,000 a month.
Who can start a luxury picnic business?
Anyone can start a luxury picnic business. The key requirements include event planning skills and an understanding of luxury audiences and their particular needs, tastes and expectations.
Being able to plan and think ahead are valuable qualities and it’s always worth checking the dietary requirements of each of the attendees so you can plan accordingly. Luxury picnic businesses don’t even need to be able to cook or cocktail, this can all be outsourced.
If you have the skills to combine all of these elements from providing superior food dishes and cocktails in a casual and classy setting whilst delighting your customers’ high expectations, this could be for you.
Where are luxury picnics held?
Luxury picnics are typically held in a location where your client and audience will enjoy gathering in. This can be in their own backyard, at their favorite park or on top of a scenic mountain.
Guests could also go to a winery, a botanical garden, or on the grounds of historic buildings. If you’re planning to host a picnic on a beach, firstly check if there are any restrictions as some beaches do not permit picnics or will require a permit.
Permit regulations can differ according to the region you are in, as well as the location of your picnic. Each picnic location including parks and campsites have their own rules and regulations regarding private picnics.
In some areas, you’ll have to submit a “Certificate of Liability Insurance” for a set cost. It’s an essential expenditure, but also an investment that will help things smooth sail in all your future picnic projects.
9 tips for opening an luxury picnic business
1). Create your business
During your business creation process, you will have to choose a business type that works for you (LLC or Sole Proprietor or similar).
An LLC will ensure your personal assets are protected from any business liabilities. For further information on this, check out our comparison of different company formation firms.
When choosing your company’s legal structure you will have to take into account all the parameters, requirements and needs of your business.
Legal platforms such as Northwest Registered Agent or ZenBusiness have been specially designed for professionals who wish to carry out their company creation process online. You can also choose to set up your business on your own.
As noted above, you will have to submit a “Certificate of Liability Insurance” to some picnic host locations to be allowed to host a picnic in their vicinity. In general, liability and similar insurance products are a good idea in the unfortunate event of a client or guest getting food poisoned or injured on the premises.
2). Get financing
Unless you have your own personal funds to invest, you’ll need a small business loan. Starting up a luxury picnic business will have certain expenses including crockery, tables, luxury dining sets, food, champagne and more, depending on the type of picnic venture you’re looking to launch.
You may need a business starter loan from your local bank, Credit Union or avail or start your business with loans guaranteed by the Small Business Administration. Any lender will want to see a detailed business plan for how and when they can expect to receive a return on their investment.
3). Write your luxury picnic business plan
There are 4 key elements to include in any luxury picnic business plan:
Determine the level of interest and demand for luxury picnics in your area and/or target locations. This gives insight into how many potential luxury picnic customers you can attract.
Identify the current rates for luxury picnic classes to determine how much you will charge. Luxury picnic fees vary based on the area of operation and the level of quality and quantity your client expects.
This deals with the advertising aspect of your online business. This may range from word-of-mouth marketing to online ads based on behavioral targeting, to attract prospective clients to sign up to your luxury picnics.
Financial plan and projections
Calculate how much capital you will need to run the luxury picnic business for the first 6 months of its inception, bearing in mind that investment into plates, crockery and equipment can be expensive.
Ideally, your luxury picnic business plan covers the first three to five years of your business, giving you something to work toward.
4). Define your target market
Do your research and find out all you can about typical luxury picnic customers. Who are they? Where do they hang out? What do they like? What food and drinks do they eat? What music do they listen to?
The answers might be very different depending on the different types of customers but you’ll get a clearer picture of who you’re going after and how you can cater to them.
When you’re establishing a luxury picnic business, you need to establish a clear niche for your business – or, an area of expertise that will differentiate you from your competitors.
So what is it that makes your luxury picnic practice different?
- Do you have a unique approach to where you source your food and drinks?
- Do you focus on pre or post meal entertainment?
- Do you cater to business people?
- Do you target particular groups of people, like working moms or expats interested in Italian food
Take some time to reflect on this and what works best for you and your clients. Think about who your audience are and how you can best serve them.
Once you’ve found your target audience, run your ideas by some friends and family. What would they think if they were a business person with high expectations being served a prosecco mimosa?
5). Purchase your luxury picnic essentials
You’ll need to go out and buy the necessary furniture, equipment and crockery you and your clients will need to ensure their high expectations. If you’re looking to have a perfectly prepared picnic without any disasters like soggy food and spoiled potato salad, a little preparation won’t hurt.
Items you’ll need to purchase include:
- Equipment: Picnic blankets & cushions, picnic hamper, china crockery, table cloth, napkins, cutlery, champagne cooler, glasses, bottle openers, cheese boards and silver cheese knife, cooler box, backpacks, picnic blankets, chopping knives, plates
- Other: Napkins, candles, paper towels, wet wipes, ice packs or thermos, sun cream, insect repellent, water, trash bags
- Audio/lighting: Outdoor lighting and sound system
If you’re organized and have a checklist, your picnic will go like clockwork and your guests will be delighted.
6). Create a website and leverage social media
When starting your luxury picnic business, the goal of the website is simple:
- Let prospective luxury picnic clients know your business exists
- Allow clients to see your weekly luxury picnic schedule and book/pay online
- Showcase your luxury picnic expertise
Your luxury picnic website is essentially your shop’s storefront, allowing potential customers to come and learn more about your incredible luxury picnics and of course photos, videos and testimonials from previous guests enjoying themselves.
It’s important that you create a professional-looking website and attract customers who will be spending a lot of money for an afternoon of luxury. Ensure the website allows for an easy checkout payment facility and easy to find contact details for custom requests.
To start a website, you can build one yourself or commission a web designer, be it a friend or web design professional on a services marketplace like Fiverr. Make sure you have an Bio section describing who you are, your passions and what you offer.
Your website should also have a slick company logo and branding, something which professionals on Fiverr can also assist with.
Leverage social media
Choose a couple of platforms and learn them in and out. For luxury picnics, Instagram, TikTok, Facebook business groups and Pinterest are excellent. If you spend time on social media, be sure to post content, ideally videos, for when your followers are most active to maximize the engagement.
Ensure your images that you post on Instagram are eye-catching, photos that will make your audience stop scrolling and click onto your profile to see more.
8). Market your business
After identifying your target audience, you’ll need to promote your business to attract these customers. This can be achieved through organic promotions on social media or business directories or paid means using Facebook or Google Adwords.
A successful luxury picnic business, like any, should include advertising costs in the budget, especially for a startup — this will help get the word out, at least until you generate repeat business.
You can even consider more conventional mediums like newspapers, business cards and business flyers in areas, coffee shops or gyms where your target audience typically frequent.
9). Launch your luxury picnic business
You’ve done your research, found a suitable luxury picnic space, purchased your picnic equipment and are ready to go! Time to launch and don’t be shy in promoting your business opening.
You can even launch a trial event in your own backyard and invite your friends, colleagues, neighbors and more to post about your new luxury picnic business and indeed attend your opening for free.
Create a hashtag such as #luxurypicnicOregon and encourage your attendees to post it on their social media accounts, highlighting this wonderful new luxury picnic business. Your job now is to drive new and repeat customers.
Other requirements for opening a luxury picnic business?
Equip yourself with the right tools
If you choose to open your own luxury picnic business, you will have to think about investing in your own equipment. Among the essentials, we recommend a credit card reader to accept debit and credit cards from clients.
Consider also accounting software from our reviews to allow you to keep an accurate view of the financial health of your business.
Open a business bank account
Among the essential steps for the successful opening of your clothing store, you will need to choose a business bank.
Thus, you will be able to estimate your professional expenses and manage them without taking the risk of losing yourself between your professional and personal expenses.
Is a luxury picnic business profitable?
Luxury picnic businesses are highly profitable with earnings of between $5,000 to $6,000 a month for newer startups and as high as $12,000 to $15,000 per month and beyond for more established businesses.
How do I market my luxury picnic business?
Luxury picnics can market their business including social media platform postings of luxury picnic videos and images on Instagram, TikTok, Facebook and Pinterest as well as online advertising via Google Adwords and Facebook ads directing customers to your website.
How do I set up a picnic business?
Setting up a luxury picnic business involves incorporating your business as an LLC or similar, establishing financing, writing your luxury picnic business plan, defining your target audience and marketing your picnic business to this audience on social media and offline channels.
Tom is the founder of Gottagrow.io. He reads the offers, deciphers the details including features, pricing, included services and more to find you the best products and services.