We chatted with the team from Edinburgh Zoo to find out more about the Giant Lanterns of China festival and why Eventbrite was their ticketing provider of choice.

Tell us about your event. How did it get started?
The Lantern Festival is a centuries-old Chinese tradition featuring spectacular illuminated sculptures from history and mythology. Edinburgh is a city filled with festivals but there was no large-scale festival celebrating Chinese New Year. With our panda connection and beautiful landscape, we felt Edinburgh Zoo was the perfect location for Scotland’s first Chinese Lantern Festival.

Who is it aimed at?
 Our event is aimed at families and couples who want to experience a festival of light during Scotland’s dark winter months.

Why did you move your ticketing over to Eventbrite?
Before moving our ticketing to Eventbrite we’d used alternative booking systems and we were disappointed in their lack of flexibility. After trialing Eventbrite for some of our free talks and events we were delighted to discover how easy it was to use and decided to book all our events using Eventbrite. They also offered a better value for customers.

What challenge has it helped you solve?
In the past, we’d had difficulty managing refunds and changing ticket dates but with Eventbrite, it is easy to reschedule tickets and issue partial refunds. The system is user-friendly and if you ever have any difficulties or questions there’s always a friendly customer assistant just a phone call away.

What are your future plans?
We have a busy events calendar which constantly evolves, so there are many challenges ahead for our ticketing.

What’s one piece of advice you’d give to new event organisers starting an event?
My one piece of advice for new event organisers is to make sure that your event has clear objectives before you get started so you can stay focused. Event planning is really fun but it can be a nightmare if you haven’t properly thought about what you want your event to be in advance.

How much has it grown since inception? Any growth numbers you can share?
We are thrilled with the interest we’ve received since announcing the festival and sold thousands of tickets through Eventbrite.

How much time has Eventbrite saved you?
Eventbrite has saved us a huge amount of time. It means that customers are able to book their own tickets online with minimal fuss and manage their own bookings through their Eventbrite accounts. We love chatting with customers on the phone but it’s always easier when more bookings are made online.

Why did you start events at Edinburgh Zoo?
We started running events at Edinburgh Zoo to reach out to new audiences and raise awareness and funds for the Royal Zoological Society’s conservation work.