Why you should use consignment travel packages in your fundraiser auction

Successful charity galas rely on strong auctions. At most auction events there are the usual suspects – gift baskets, hair removal services (..ew), and dinner at a fine restaurant in town. Unique travel experiences, on the other hand, continue to be one of the most-anticipated and best-selling auction items in the industry.

However, while offering unique excursions is important to an event’s overall profitability, charities are sometimes hesitant to partner with a consignment travel company. Explore these four common concerns about using consignment travel to better understand how this service can benefit your charity:

1. The trips seem too expensive for our donors.  

Underestimating your donors’ spending capabilities is one of the quickest ways to dampen your auction results. Big donors are sophisticated buyers who come to your event with a spending budget in mind.

We hear this repeatedly from the thousands of winning bidders who redeem Winspire Experiences every year. In fact, we survey each of them when they return from their trip – primarily to gather feedback about their experience – but also to learn more about event fundraising dynamics from their perspective.


Our surveys show that 76% of donors attend at least four charity events annually, and 42% of the winning bidders budget at least $10,000 each year for vacation travel. These are savvy auction veterans!

Your organization can easily tap into these travel budgets by matching unique trips with donor interests and vacation plans. Through a no-risk travel service provider like Winspire, you can condition your supporters to plan their travel around what you can offer at your events. This creates a fun and profitable experience for everyone.

Read Next: 3-Step Guide for Setting Minimum Starting Bids on Charity Auction ItemsSetting an appropriate starting bid for charity auction items can greatly affect how lucrative that item becomes for your cause.Read More →

2. Will the minimum bid be too much, and what happens if the minimum bid isn’t met during the auction?

For a charity that has never used consignment travel packages before, this is a common concern. A good consignment travel company will help you with strategies to ensure this is not an issue during your auction.

First and foremost, choosing appropriate travel packages helps ensure multiple bids. Our Winspire Event Consultants know which travel destinations and experiences are popular with most bidding audiences. They will help you select a good match for your donor demographics and geographic location.

A strong consignment travel company also understands the auction process and will help you develop a strategy and process to get the bidding started and keep it active.

3. Our charity will make more money if we procure the travel ourselves.

Occasionally a board member or generous benefactor donates a really great vacation home for the auction. Too often, though, the beach house has been donated many times before, or the vacation condo is in a location that is a common travel destination. This can be boring and a potential turn off to gala attendees, who come to the event expecting a more exciting auction.

There is a common misconception that local travel does well because of familiarity: “We are all here and we all travel to these two destinations, therefore let me build a package for that.” It really doesn’t work that way, because familiarity doesn’t make it special. Traveling from one side of the country to the other feels much more valuable than a weekend trip to a local hot spot.

By utilizing a strong consignment travel company, you provide your event attendees with attractive, unique travel experiences that generate more competitive bidding during the auction. Promoting the consignment travel packages ahead of the event fuels the auction excitement even more.

limited-time-resources4. I don’t have time to deal with a consignment travel company.

By insisting there is more profitability in getting trips donated themselves, charity event coordinators increase their work loads substantially. The burden of coordinating the timing of air travel, lodging, and the experience is a stressful endeavor. And, if there is more than one travel auction item, that burden is increased exponentially.

One donated trip or experience is realistic to be able to secure on your own. Beyond that, in order to generate substantially more from your auction, you need a broader selection of trips so you can capture as many different vacation budgets in the room. Even if you only offer 2-3 consignment trips, they can be sold multiple times so you can double, triple or quadruple your return on a single package.

Save valuable time and energy by outsourcing experiential packages to a solid no-risk travel provider. Let the experts take on the risk of developing unique trips and making the travel arrangements so you can focus on the rest of the gala. Then sit back and enjoy the show as your donors compete for incredible trips at your successful and profitable charity auction.