Well, That's Santa! provides a professional Santa who spends every day of the year interacting with people as Santa. He has a premium, custom-tailored suit that costs well over $2,000 and $700 boots. Dry cleaning the suit alone costs more than the best chain-store Santa-in-a-box suit. So, though there may be cheaper ways to provide a Santa for your event, you’d be hard pressed to find a better one!
So, how much is a Santa visit? Well, it varies. That's Santa! charges by the half-hour, and the first half-hour is charged at double the rate of subsequent half-hours. This is to help offset the time spent in preparations and local travel... getting the beard right and suiting up can take 90 minutes! In addition to the base rate, a surcharge is applied to premium dates, with the first two weeks in December being the highest demand. Premiums will be attached to higher volume events, too, as Santa needs more time to recover from visiting with 300 children than he does from visiting 30.
So, again, how much is a Santa visit? Here are a couple of examples. A 30-minute home visit in November might only be $120, but on the second Saturday of December it might be $200. A 2-hour mid-week daycare visit might be $240 but a 2-hour Sunday photo session might be $500. All that to say, every gig is different, so please contact us for a quote. Rates may be discounted for extended bookings or based on charitable considerations. Travel within a 2o-minute drive-time zone (click to view map) is free, additional miles driven are $1 each way. Minimum booking is thirty minutes or time of travel one-way, whichever is greater. Travel expenses and a per-diem will be quoted for multi-day events requiring distant travel.
To book Santa for your visit, first check his calendar for availability. Once you have a date in mind, e-mail or phone with your event specifics: where the event will be held, what type of venue, how many guests are expected, and how long you need Santa. That's Santa! will respond with a quote, and pencil-in your event. If you agree to the quote we will write a contract. Once we agree to the contract terms Santa will convert the booking to tentative, and once we receive a 50% retainer it will convert to a firm-booking. The remainder will be due at the completion of your event. Retainers may be paid via Paypal or check (credit-card over the phone is also an option). Balances may be paid with cash, check, or credit-card swipe (with prior notice).
The retainer is not a deposit. A deposit is an advance, partial payment for services to be performed. A retainer is a hedge against the loss of income that we're exposed to by blocking out the date(s) for an event on our calendar. One might think that if a client cancels an event, say, three months out that That's Santa! would have plenty of time to re-book that date and, therefore, the client should be due a refund. But, the truth is, the best events are large, yearly events and the planners often book six months to a year in advance. Events booked closer to the season are, generally, lower-quality bookings (from an income and repeatability point-of-view). So, though it might be possible to re-book the cancelled date with a home-visit or a small party or other last-minute type event, there is still considerable potential for loss if that date could have been filled months earlier with a huge, annual corporate party.
There is one exception to the no-refund policy: if the appearance has to be cancelled by That's Santa! for reasons beyond our control. If our Santa is sick or injured we will make every attempt to provide a quality replacement, often at additional cost to That's Santa! beyond what the event pays (last minute replacements are generally not cheap!). However, the potential exists that no replacement can be found and in such case the retainer will be refunded. Severe weather that That's Santa! deems to be impassable is also a reason we may cancel the appearance, and a refund will be given. But, that determination will be at our discretion. If the client cancels the event due to weather, not only will the retainer not be refunded, but the appearance fee is also still due. All contracts are “pay or play”.
We agree, but we'd rather be all-business on the front-end and all-Santa on the day of your event! That's Santa! exists for one reason, and one reason only, and that is not to watch a clock, or collect a check, but to bring the unique joy of meeting Santa to boys and girls of all ages.