The amount we usually suggest you budget for a THATCamp is about $4000 for 100 people ($40 per person), but, as you can see from the past THATCamp budgets below, you can hold a THATCamp for even less than that.
Budgeting for your THATCamp
THATCamps are cheap and informal by design, so we recommend that you set as low a budget as possible. The biggest cost is usually the food, so if you really need to keep costs low, consider letting people buy their own lunch or even (gasp!) their own coffee. The other large cost of holding an unconference is the space: hotels and conference centers are very expensive, and therefore many THATCamps are held at a university. Remember, too, that while it’s become a bit of a tradition to offer free t-shirts to THATCampers, you’re under no obligation to do so. T-shirts usually cost at least $8 per person, so eliminating them can save $1000 or more from your budget.
If you ask for donations from participants, you can usually expect about 50% of the participants to donate $20 apiece (for 100 attendees, expect to make $20 apiece from 50 participants, i.e., about $1000 — usually enough to cover the t-shirts). Don’t forget to plan for a 15% cancellation rate.
Past THATCamp Budgets
When you’re done with your THATCamp, we’d love to add your budget to this spreadsheet. Click here to arrive at a form where you can input your own numbers. To see the budget in its original Google Doc, click this link.