How To Choose Your Wedding Venue
So he's popped the question, you've set up a Pinterest board, now you need to find a venue, but where to start? Never fear, And so to Wed is here! We have 5 easy steps to follow when choosing your wedding venue, key questions to ask and a handy free download to help you on your way. So first things first...
1. Get Organised
This is key to most elements of wedding planning, but it is particularly important when choosing your wedding venue. There are so many different places out there you have to be organised. Start by making a list of what you must have, what you'd like and what you definitely don't want. It's important that you're both on the same page and know exactly what you're prepared to compromise on when choosing your wedding venue. You then need to work out your budget. This will obviously have a big impact on which venue you choose (although they may be flexible on price and we'll share tips on how to negotiate price with later on).
2. Do lots of research
Get online and search for wedding venues in your area. You'll quickly get a feel for what's available, pricing etc. Pinterest is great for gathering all your ideas together and to help you see which venues come out top on of your wish list. Make sure you compare what each venue offers including how much extras cost. This will help you to narrow down your search and put together a final list of venues to visit.
3. See as many as you can
Make a plan of action, book a load of appointments and get visiting. Why not make it part of your wedding experience, treat yourself to afternoon tea, champagne, cocktails or even stay overnight to make your venue shopping truly memorable.
4. Fall in love (again!)
Choosing a venue is like buying a house, often you walk in and just know, 'this is the one'. Allow yourself to do this, envisage yourself walking down the aisle, your friends and family enjoying themselves, think about waking up there on your wedding morning etc. If you can see yourself saying 'I do', then say 'We do' and book it! If however, it isn't like that for you, don't panic! Be flexible, work out which venues fit your wish list the closest then think about how you may be able to alter certain factors to ensure the venue is giving you everything you want. You may be able to tweak the styling, add a marquee or use an outdoor space.
Last but not least, the money part. Some people shy away from negotiating but there is no reason to, wedding venues are used to discussing price and working to a budget. So share with them what your priorities are, discuss food options, decor ideas, music and help them to help you create your perfect wedding day at a price you are comfortable with.
To send you on your way with your venue search we have put together 35 questions to ask your wedding venue below. You can also download our handy Free Printable Guide
35 Questions To Ask Your Wedding Venue
1. Does the venue suit your theme or would it impact upon any theme?
2. Is it big enough to accommodate all your guests?
3. Do they have an in-house wedding co-coordinator?
4. Do they have equipment you can use or will you have to hire tables, chairs, linens, plates, glassware, etc?
5. Do they have catering in-house or must you hire your own?
6. Do they have recommended suppliers they can give you a list of?
7. Is there a corkage fee for supplying your own alcohol?
8. Will you have a free bar or paid bar – can they accommodate both?
9. How late will the bar be open?
10. How will the staff be dressed? How many will be available for your wedding?
11. Is entertainment permitted? (surprisingly some venues will not allow live bands)
12. Do they allow fireworks or lanterns?
13. Is the lighting at the venue suitable for your photos? (particularly if the weather is bad and you have to have photos inside)
14. Are the tables/chairs/linens available in the colours/styles that you want?
15. Are there any restrictions on where the flowers and decorations will be placed?
16. Are there any restrictions on types of decorations (for example, some venues will not allow candles)
17. What kind of confetti does the venue allow, and will they charge you for the cleanup of it afterwards?
18. Is there a safe place for guests to store coats and personal belongings?
19. Is there a safe place for gifts?
20. Will the venue decorate to your theme or allow you to decorate?
21. Does the venue have disabled access?
22. Are there adequate parking facilities and will it be clearly sign posted on the day?
23. Can guests leave their cars overnight and collect them the next day?
24. Is there on-site accommodation for the guests? If so, is there a discount available for your guests?
25. What is the cancellation/postponement policy? (get this in writing so there are no grey areas)
26. How much is the deposit to secure the date and when is it due?
27. How soon after the event is the balance due?
28. Is VAT included in the final price?
29. Do they have a bridal/honeymoon suite for the wedding night?
30. Will there be any other weddings or events at the venue on the same day?
31. Can you have exclusive use and what are the extra costs?
32. Can they meet your budget?
33. Does the package include menu tasting?
34. Does the venue provide catering for children?
35. Can they supply everything in writing? (this is a great way of ensuring you have all the details and don’t get stung by any hidden costs or small print)
Written by Louise
35 Questions To Ask Your Wedding Venue by Lianne at LoveLi