Frequently Asked Questions

How much do you charge to host an event?
Charlotte's hosting fee will vary according to the type, size and location of the event.  To assist with accurate quoting, please provide information such as potential date(s), themes that may interest you, location of the party and approximate number of guests expected.  You can request a quote here.

What does the hosting fee include?
The quoted fee covers Charlotte's services in costume and character for the duration of your event, travel expenses (if applicable), and consultation via email or phone in the lead-up to your party.  A site visit or planning meeting may be possible as required.  Charlotte will also provide themed background music, and has a battery-operated PA with microphones available for use.

How can I pay?
Charlotte will provide an invoice for her hosting services.  You can pay via cash or cheque at the event, or via electronic funds transfer.  A deposit may be required for larger events, when travel is involved or if Charlotte is ordering the kit on your behalf.

Where do I purchase a kit, and which theme should I choose?
There are many, many murder mysteries available online and through entertainment companies.  Charlotte has four exclusive, in-house mysteries available - A Fairytale Fiasco, Pandemonium at the Prom (1980's), Murder on the Dance Floor (1970's) and Death at the Diner (1950's) - which are all great fun if you love music and interactive activities.  These can be particularly appropriate if you and your guests grew up in and remember a particular era with fondness!  As a freelance host, Charlotte is very familiar with and recommends Murder in a Box products, but is also happy to refer you to entertainment companies who provide other products, or discuss a mystery you have located elsewhere.
Choose a theme that appeals to you and your guests, and feel free to consider the following suggestions:
Hollywood Scandal is great for younger groups (e.g. 16-30 years) and for people who love to get 'glammed up'
1920s Tracy Gang is very appropriate for corporate groups, and parties where the guests are within a similar age range
Wild West is a very popular theme for Hens Nights
Caribbean Cruise works well for family gatherings across more than one generation
Christmas Capers is most suitable for (you guessed it!) Christmas parties
Haunted Horrors can also be seasonal, but works just as well outside of Halloween!
In the end, if the theme appeals to your sense of fun, it will most likely work very well for your event.

Can themes be adapted to suit my event?
Yes, most likely!  The murder mystery stories are pre-written, of course, but f you are having a particular type of event (e.g. hens' night, baby shower) and would like the murder mystery activities to reflect the theme or occasion, Charlotte is always more than happy to discuss the options.  Generally, this can be done within the usual hosting fee, however if the adaptation involves a large amount of research and design or extra materials to be purchased, Charlotte may quote a small additional fee.

How many hosts will I need?
If you are expecting fewer than 40 guests, one host is generally sufficient.  For 40-60 guests, Charlotte recommends you consider a second host.  If you have more than 60 guests, please discuss your specific requirements with Charlotte.  For larger parties, Charlotte often co-hosts with her husband, Douglas Bair.

How much space will I need?
As a general rule, a venue is appropriate if there is enough space for all guests to stand comfortably in a circle as well as gather into smaller groups (seated in a cluster or around tables); if the activity levels will not disturb other patrons (e.g. in a restaurant); and if the murder mystery activities will not be affected by other venue noise such as a band in the next room.  If you are using a Murder in a Box game, detailed venue advice is included in your kit.

How long will the murder mystery go for?
The game will usually run for between 2 to 3 hours.  Bear in mind that it's better to wait until all guests have arrived before starting the activities, and the game is designed to be the feature of the evening, so late arrivals or the inclusion of a sit-down meal may make the evening run longer than planned.

Should we dress up?
Yes!!  Whilst this is not essential, having guests in costume will really add to the ambience of the event.  Some basic decorating of the venue is also a great addition, and you'd be surprised how a few cheap and easy-to-source items can turn your venue into a 1950's diner, a speakeasy or a red-carpet affair!.

Can I serve food and drinks?
Of course!  Finger food or table platters are a great addition to Death at the Diner, Murder on the Dance Floor, Pandemonium at the Prom, A Fairytale Fiasco or a Murder in a Box murder mystery, as the activities include breaks where guests can have a bite to eat, grab a drink, visit the loo or pop outside.  A sit-down meal is less appropriate, however if you are keen to hold the event over dinner, Charlotte is happy to offer suggestions on some alternative murder mysteries or arrangements. Please bear in mind that a couple of drinks will relax your guests and get them in the mood for a fun event, but an intoxicated group will detract from rather than enhance the activities.  

What about music?
Background music is a nice addition to the activities. Charlotte can provide some themed music on CD or I-Pod, or you may like to use a selection of your own favourite music. Charlotte also has a battery-operated PA system in case the venue's sound system is inaccessible or inappropriate.

What do I need to do on the night?
Charlotte will generally arrive at your venue around 30 minutes before your guests arrive or the event is due to start.  If you have purchased the murder mystery kit, please ensure the materials are all available and ready at the venue for Charlotte to set up.  After that, you are free to relax and make the most of your event - you can join in as a character, or coordinate the food and drinks and enjoy the show!

Will there be prizes?
Most murder mystery products come with themed certificates for 'winners' and notable players, however some clients like to augment these with small prizes such as chocolates/wine/gift vouchers or tacky themed prizes such as plastic Oscar statuettes or mini mirror balls from a $2 shop.  These can be great fun, but are in no way essential to the evening, as the emphasis is generally on the sleuthing process rather than being the first to solve the mystery!

Do you have more questions about how your murder mystery will run?  Please do not hesitate to contact Charlotte for further information.