The time to plan your wedding has come and it’s a dream come true, but when you get started, you panic. There are so many decisions to make, and one of the first, and biggest, is choosing the perfect venue. The wedding venue sets the tone for your special day and plays a crucial role in creating the atmosphere you’re looking for. But finding the perfect venue that also fits within your budget can be a challenge.
That’s where we come in! We’ll provide you with ideas and questions to ask when considering different wedding venues. Hopefully, when we’re done, we’ll have given you everything you need to choose the perfect venue for your perfect wedding!
Determine Your Budget
Before you start touring wedding venues, make sure you know your budget and how much you’re willing to spend on the venue. Be sure to ask the following questions:
- Where will I be getting ready?
- Where will my fiancé be getting ready?
- Where will we have the ceremony?
- Where will we have the reception?
It’s important to know the answers to these questions before setting your budget because if you need to factor in hotels or Airbnb’s to get ready at, you’ll want to plan for it. And when you’re touring venues, those questions may help eliminate locations. For example, if you want to get ready, have the ceremony, and reception at one place, knowing that in advance will help narrow down your search!
Create a Guest List
Having an estimated guest count will be key in figuring out the size of venue you need. Some wedding venues might be too small for you, and some even have a maximum capacity. By creating a guest list early on, you can narrow down your options making your search a bit easier.
Consider Your Wedding Style
Every couple has a unique vision for their wedding day. Think about the vibe and style you want to create. Are you going for a more traditional/formal wedding? Or maybe you’re wanting a more rustic or bohemian, free-spirited wedding. Either way, your wedding venue will play a huge part in helping you create that style.
Wedding Venue Research and Shortlist
With your budget, guest count, and wedding style in mind, it’s time to start researching! The first way we recommend is asking your friends and family. Make a quick post on Facebook asking for people’s recommendations. The more you tell them what you’re looking for the more helpful their answers will be!
Once you’ve done that, we recommend using a site like Wedding Wire or The Knot. These wedding directories make it easy to narrow down your search. You can also use these platforms to reach out directly to wedding venues if you want! When you’re searching, don’t forget to read reviews!
Okay, now that you’ve got your shortlist of venues, it’s time to set up touring appointments!
Ask the Right Questions
During your venue visits or consultations, you want to make sure you’re asking the right questions! This will help you gain a full understanding of what each venue offers. Some of these questions might seem obvious, but they can be easily forgotten when you’re in the moment. But don’t worry, that’s why you have us 🙂
- Are you available on my date?
- What are the rental fees, and what does the cost include?
- Does the venue provide in-house catering and bar services, or can you bring in your own vendors?
- Is there a minimum spend requirement for catering or other services?
- Are there any additional charges or hidden costs?
- Can I photograph my engagement session or bridal session here for free?
- What is the venue’s cancellation policy?
- Are there any restrictions on decor, music, or photography?
- This is important to know specifically for churches.
- Will we be able to get ready here?
- What time will we have to be out after the wedding?
- Do you require us to clean up after the wedding?
- Are there any noise restrictions or curfews that you should be aware of?
- What is the backup plan for inclement weather?
Like we said, we know finding the right wedding venue can seem overwhelming but our hope is that we’ve made it just a bit easier for you. If you’re looking for more wedding tips, be sure to check out our blog and season 1 of our podcast Behind The Studio, where we go over planning your wedding day from start to finish!