First, you had to find someone to marry, and now the next big thing is choosing your wedding venue. We all know planning a wedding is no walk in the park but once you figure out your venue, it should be comforting to know that you have solved a huge chunk of this puzzle.
Whether you want to trade an altar for a lush, green garden, the serenity of a beach, or just a good ol’ hall, your wedding venue is one thing you can’t skip or be carefree about. No matter how small the budget, you’ve got to have a place of convergence for family and friends to celebrate with you and your spouse.
The comfort of your guests depends on your wedding space but most importantly, the overall aura of your special day also depends on it. So, whether you’re using a wedding planner or not, you need to ask the right questions before choosing a venue to create the wedding day of your dreams. It has to be somewhere you actually like and a place you can comfortably afford to avoid extra crankiness on your big day.
Here are 7 important things to consider when choosing a wedding venue…
#1. Your style
Close your eyes and visualize how you want your wedding to feel. Where are you –are you standing on a beach or in a grand ballroom? Are you outdoors with flowers as your backdrop or simply in a classy restaurant?
Also, what sort of vibe are you drawn to? This can be anything from formal to rustic and even casual. Look for a venue that matches your preferred style. For instance, if a rustic vibe is your wedding style of choice, there’s probably no better wedding venue than a farm.
#2. Availability and capacity
You might want to start making those calls as soon as you know your guest count because it’s possible your dream venue may be fully booked for the year. As soon as possible, find out if the venue is available on your preferred wedding date and if it has enough capacity to accommodate your estimated guest list.
Also, when choosing a wedding venue, strike out any place that doesn’t accommodate your headcount as you want there to be enough room for your guests when it’s time to boogie on the dance floor.
#3. Location, location, location
If your wedding ceremony and reception are to be held at two different sites, make sure they are close to each other to avoid putting your guests off. You don’t want your guests to be late or get lost trying to locate your reception venue. If possible, while choosing a wedding venue, pick a space that is located centrally.
#4. Nearby accommodation
Although your wedding lands on a specific day, we all know the “mode” begins way before the day. This means that guests often have to travel to enjoy the entire celebration, and this opens the discussion of accommodation. When choosing your wedding venue, it’s important to select a place that boasts proximity to an ample number of accommodations, including hotels, guest houses, and Airbnb.
#5. Does the venue offer in-house catering?
Food is a huge part of wedding planning and tends to be something guests (like your foodie aunty) look forward to. Speak with the managers of your intended location if in-house catering is a service they offer. Regardless of whether you prefer a traditional multi-course seated dinner or a more relaxed sharing-style feast, you should know what your venue offers and leverage the service.
If in-house catering is on the menu, find out whether they can provide you with menu options to suit your budget, guest numbers, and any dietary requirements. And if not, ask if they have a list of recommended local catering suppliers.
#6. Wedding budget
What’s the point of falling in love with a place only for it to be financially inaccessible? It would be easier to snag your first choice and get the most bang for your buck if you have a wedding venue budget and stick to it. Get to this early as finding out later that your dream venue doesn’t match your budget can pose serious hurdles. Also, before you sign that contract, make sure there aren’t any hidden costs.
HINT: Your dream of a perfect wedding venue is valid so, if you’re on a tight budget, you may want to look into reducing the number of guests.
It is advisable to do your homework before you pay for the space. Check out the restrooms, staff behavior, facilities, and general maintenance of the venue. In addition, also look up reviews online and if possible, make inquiries from previous customers. It is expedient to have your space spick and span at all times with hands-on staff who ensure it remains that way till the end of your event.
Exhaust all your questions before committing; Is there proper air conditioning? Is there a ‘backup’ space for your outdoor wedding if it suddenly starts to rain? Do you have good lighting so that your guests can see as the evening goes on?
Choosing a venue might seem cumbersome, nevertheless, doing it with your partner will further your bonding and that’s definitely welcomed. But keep in mind that it could also lead to your first major argument due to differences in preferences. How you two work together on choosing the perfect wedding venue will lay a foundation for how you’ll work together on many other projects throughout your marriage.
Don’t be afraid to ask a million questions, it is the only way you will know if the venue is right for you.
Congratulations on your big day!
Featured image: Ichad Windhiagiri/Pexels
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