Frequently Asked Questions

You Have Questions, We Have Answers

No matter how prepared you are for your event, the weather or guest needs could require some last minute shuffling. Because we know that better than anyone, here’s a list of things that might help.
*If you need to speak with someone right away, please call (608) 846-5004.
Getting Started
Q: How do I make a reservation?
A: To make a reservation a 25% non-refundable down payment is required at the time of booking. An additional non-refundable 25% is due 90 days prior to the Out Date and the remaining payment is due 2 weeks prior to the Out Date when the order is finalized. Payments can be made with credit card or check. Checks must be received at least 14 business days prior to the Out Date. A driver’s license is typically used for identification.
Q: Do I need an appointment?
A: Yes. To make sure qualified and knowledgeable staff is available appointments are important. We have an award-winning showroom with displays and a creative design studio to experiment with ideas for your event. Please consult the hours and location of our store to plan your next visit.
Q: Where is your showroom?
A: Our showroom is located at 6485 Blanchar’s Crossing in Windsor, WI. (It’s about four miles from East Towne Mall, north of Madison.)
Q: How far in advance should I begin planning and reserving rentals for my event?
A: There is no specific requirement, however, once you have chosen the date for your event and know what you need, call us to place a deposit and make your reservation to assure availability.

Event Planning
Q: What size tent do I need?
A: Tent size will be impacted by table seating, food and bar service area, dance floor, head table space, stage and performance area, social distancing, etc. We can do a computerized drawing to help you create the best event possible. Please call to get the appropriate size tent for your event needs.
Q: How much of an item should I reserve if I only have an estimated number of guests?
A: You should reserve at the higher end of your estimated number of guests. You can change the number as your responses come back and as your event date approaches. Final counts are needed 14 days prior to the Out Date.

Delivery & Return
Q: How long is the rental period?
A: Generally, rates are quoted for a one-day, single-use event. Arrangements for customers utilizing Event Essentials’ delivery, pick up and labor services will be made on a case-by-case basis depending on customer needs, staff availability, delivery assets, venue requirements, etc. Typically, arrangements allow for the equipment to be obtained at least the day before the event and returned the next business day after the event. If you require a different rental period or accommodation, please contact us for rate information. All charges are for time out whether used or not. Prices and policies are subject to change.
Q: How do I know what time my order be delivered?
A: Delivery and pickup services are generally between 8:00AM and 5:00PM Monday through Saturday (not including holidays). You may call the afternoon-before or morning-of your stop to get an arrival estimate from our delivery department. They can give you an idea of where you are on the routing schedule for that day.

If there are specific timing parameters we need to work around, please discuss those needs with an Account Manager ahead of time because delivery and labor resources need to be planned and scheduled. Due to the additional costs for special routing and trips there is an additional charge.

We strive to honor timed requests, but sometimes there are circumstances beyond our control such as unplanned delays at other stops, traffic, and weather.
Q: Can I pick up the rentals myself?
A: In limited circumstances. Arrangements for pick up and return to our warehouse should be made in advance to assure qualified staff is available. Additionally, not all rental equipment can be picked up by customers.
Q: Do you deliver and set up?
A: Yes, we offer delivery, set up, take down and pickup services. Standard labor and delivery rates are Monday through Saturday (not including holidays) from 8:00AM to 5:00PM. It includes service to first-floor docks, garages or within 25 feet of the tailgate of the truck. Delivery, pickup, setup and take down to areas or floors beyond this require additional charges due to increased labor involvement.

We can also set up and take down rented equipment. Hourly labor rates apply and are based on many factors (day and time, truck proximity to set up, terrain, obstacles, time constraints, etc.). Please contact us in advance to discuss your event logistics.

Cleaning & Damages
Q: Do I need to launder the linens before returning?
A: Linens and cloth items do not have to be laundered but care should be taken to avoid mildew. (Mildew and using linens as wiping cloths is considered misuse and not covered by Damage Waiver.) Linens should be returned dry and free of food matter in the linen bags provided. Please return all totes, bags and boxes you receive with your rental. Charges will apply for missing containers and items needing extra cleaning.
Q: What if there is damage to the rental items?
A: We offer an optional Damage Waiver which covers accidental damage. This optional waiver does not cover missing items, negligence, misuse, or theft. The cost of the Damage Waiver is 10% of the rental fee. If you decide not to take the Damage Waiver, you are responsible for damage to the rented items.

Special note regarding installed tents: Damage Waiver is not charged on installed tents and accessories (liners, lights, etc.). However, since Damage Waiver is not charged, damage done to these items is the responsibility of the customer. For example, damage done by the customer, guests, suppliers, or vandals is chargeable. However, damage to tents due to weather events is the responsibility of Event Essentials.
Q: Do I need to clean items before returning?
A: Equipment should be returned rinsed and free of food matter and in the containers provided. We sanitize and re-package the equipment so it is ready for the next customer. If your situation prevents cleaning, we do have cleaning services available for a fee.
Q: Do I need to wash tableware and food service items before use?
A: No, these items will be ready to use when you receive them.
Q: What if my order is missing an item or something is broken?
A: Your order is double checked before it is sent out to you. Please check over your entire order when you receive it. If there is a problem, let us know right away so we can correct the situation to minimize the impact on your event.
Q: What if I have a problem with the equipment?
A: If you run into problems (even after hours) give us a call right away. The sooner we know about the problem the sooner we can correct it. If we are closed you will be able to leave a message and someone will return your call if you choose the urgent option. If you report a problem after the event you will be charged for the rental.

Payment & Refund
Q: When do I get my refund?
A: As soon after the return of the equipment and final accounting as possible! Here’s what happens: Depending on the day of return, order size, and time of year your order will be processed within 1-5 business days. If there are damaged or missing items you will be contacted. If you are aware of damaged or missing items or other issues please notify us. This expedites final accounting and closing of the transaction since we don’t have to contact you if you already know about it.

The speed of the refund will also depend on what form of payment you use. Check refunds will take up to three weeks to process and are sent after the final closing (not the return date). Credit card transactions don’t take as long because they are processed electronically the same day the order is closed.
Q: What forms of payment are accepted?
A: We accept MasterCard, VISA, American Express and Discover. We accept checks when they are received more than 14 business days prior to the Out Date (delivery or customer pick up).
Q: What is the deposit?
A: The deposit is a flat amount (determined by order size) collected two weeks prior to the Out Date (at the same time as the remaining payment). It is a contingency to cover loss, damage, late returns, and unexpected conditions requiring additional services. The deposit is returned (less any adjustments due to the aforementioned occurrences) after the order is checked in and closed.
Q: Is there a minimum order?
A: We have year-round rental minimums in place on all of our orders.

Order minimums are as follows:
  • Will Call Orders are a $100 minimum
  • Non-Tent Delivery Orders are a $250 minimum
  • Tent Delivery Orders are a $1,000 minimum
Please consult your account executive regarding minimums as it applies to your contract agreement.

Q: What if I need to cancel my reservation? (See separate policy for tents, below.)
  • Cancellations made more than 90 days from the Out Date will be charged 25% of the rental.
  • Cancellations made within 90 days of the Out Date will be charged 50% of the rental.
  • Cancellations made within 14 days of the Out Date will be charged 75% of the rental.
  • Cancellations within 48 hours of the Out Date will be charged the full rental. Additional charges may apply if the order has been loaded and/or in route.
  • Cancellation on special order items is not refundable.
Q: What if I need to cancel my tent reservation?
  • Tent reservations cancelled 90 days or more prior to the Out Date will receive a full refund.
  • Tent reservations cancelled less than 90 days prior to the Out Date will be charged half of the tent rental.
  • Tent reservations cancelled within 14 days of the Out Date will be charged the full rental.

Q: What if I need to make changes?
  • Final changes to item counts need to be placed at least 14 days prior to delivery or customer pick up.
  • One week prior to the Out Date orders are packed, staged and loaded and cannot be reduced.
  • Equipment added to your order within one week of the Out Date will be subject to Last Minute Order or Delivery Fees.
  • Once the order is assembled, full charges apply.


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