Navigating the Wedding Venue Search
So, you’ve set your budget, you have a general idea of how many guests you’re planning to invite...now you’re tackling your wedding venue search. When considering potential venues to host your wedding, there are many things to consider: capacity, location, cost , fit to vision and style of your wedding. Before you begin visiting venues, you’ll want to do some research. WeddingWire and The Knot are great sites to gather information about potential venues that you like and reading reviews from former couples. There are many venues to choose from, so narrow down your search to the types of venue that fit your wedding vision, capacity it will hold and the dates that are available.
Left Photo Location: Ballroom at the Belvedere Left Photo Venue: Arts Group Photograpy Lead Planner: Ashlee Hill, Elle Nicole Events Right Photo Location: Unique Venue, St. Francis Hall Photo credit: Cynthia Shipp Photography Lead Planner: Kristin McCormick, Elle Nicole Events)
Listed below are some questions that you can ask at your venue site visits to ensure you book the perfect wedding venue and you don’t have any surprises later.
What packages or time slots are available?
What are your rental fees?
What is the maximum capacity of the venue?
What deposit is required and what is the schedule of payments?
Will you put a hold on my wedding date and if so, how long?
Will there be sufficient time for setup and breakdown of the event?
Do we need to obtain any permits?
Do you provide catering or can we choose our own caterer?
Do you have a preferred vendor list? Are we required to work with vendors on the list?
What is the alcohol policy or rules?
Is the venue handicap accessible?
Are they are obstructions in the room that can block the view of our guests?
How many events do you book on the same day?
Are there any limitations or rules on music?
For outdoor weddings and events - Is there an inclement weather backup on site?
Is there an on-site coordinator that will manage the venue and its staff?
Is security required?
What parking is available for our guests? Is it free?
What decorating rules are there?
What equipment do you provide (tables, chairs, linens, glassware, flatware, etc.)?
Once you decide on the wedding venue, you will be required to pay a deposit and sign a rental agreement to secure your wedding date. Many of our clients love to visit their wedding venue as often as possible, so as long as the venue permits, schedule vendor meetings at the venue, so they can also become acquainted. If your venue doesn’t have an in-house caterer, you’ll also need to interview (and taste yummy food) potential caterers for your reception. Since you have the choice of caterers to work with, you have the option to only work with a caterer that works in your budget.
Navigate the venue search by conducting your research, asking great questions and deciding on the venue that suits your wedding vision.
Good luck with your search!