How To Pick The Perfect Venue For Your Wedding
Where have you always dreamed of getting married? An intimate setting with just family and friends? A rustic wedding high a top a mountain? Or maybe you have a flair for sophistication, and an elegant ballroom is calling your name. Whether you want a cozy setting or a full-blown affair, the location of your wedding is a big deal, and will determine the flavor of your special day. Both a costly decision and an emotional one choosing a wedding venue should be one of the first decisions you make as every other choice will center around it. Here are some tips on how to pick the perfect venue for your wedding.
Consider These Factors When Choosing a Venue
1. How many guests will be invited?
2. What can you reasonably afford?
3. Does the venue fit your style?
4. What is included in the price?
5. Is the vicinity of your venue conveniently located?
Will The Size Accommodate My Guests?
Obviously this is the most important factor to consider. If your guest list includes1,000 people, find a space that comfortably accommodates at least 800. It’s hard to gauge how many of those invited will actually attend, err on the side of caution, and select a space large enough for the majority of your guests. The last thing you want is a bunch of claustrophobic guests because they can’t move.
On the flip side, don’t book a venue that is too spacious for the number of people anticipated. You don’t want the feeling of too much empty space, and a poorly attended event.
Don’t Break The Bank
While you certainly want to love the place you’ll be getting married, it’s not worth breaking the bank over. You don’t want unnecessary debt to worry about after the honeymoon is over, and your parents don’t want to be paying off a second mortgage because of your decision. Choose based on what you can reasonably afford. No doubt it’s a very special day, but it is only one day that will come and go so maintain a healthy perspective.
Does The Look And Feel Of The Venue Fit Your Style?
If your wedding style has a modern flair, select locations based on this style. Try your best to keep all the elements cohesive. Also make sure the space and lighting feel right? Does it have a good vibe? What’s your gut feeling about this place?
Whether it’s a fairytale wedding at a five-star hotel, a rustic barn nestled in the hills, or a moonlit ceremony on a windswept beach, make sure your venue aligns with your vision for the day you’ve always dreamed of. The ambiance sets the tone for your celebration so make sure it’s one you adore before forking over a down payment.
While it’s great to take others’ opinions into account, in the end it’s you that needs to make the final decision – as long as it’s within your budget, of course. Don’t let others talk you into something you’re not comfortable with, or you’re not sold on!
Look at a variety of venues to best determine which one fits your needs. Don’t hastily book the first one you look at because you want to cross it off your list. Make a list of pros and cons of each location to decide which one suits your style, needs, and budget.
Determine What Is Included With The Venue
Some venues offer package deals when booking. Here are factors to consider:
- Is food included in the package or will you need to hire a caterer? If it is, what is the price per plate?
- Are there different options for food, for example, dessert-only options, hor d’oeuvres, or a sit-down meal?
- Is the parking space big enough to accommodate your guests or will you need a shuttle?
- Is there a dance floor or adequate space for dancing?
- Is a cake included in the package. Are cake decorators recommended?
- Are DJs allowed?
- What time will you need to end the reception?
- What about flowers? Are florists recommended? Are centerpieces included or will you need to furnish your own?
- If it’s an outdoor venue, what options are available in case of inclement weather?
- Is the building adequately decorated or will you need to supply decorations?
- Are tables, chairs, and linens included in your cost?
- What about lighting? Can you augment what’s available with your own?
- And lastly, and most importantly, is the venue available the date of my wedding?
Keep in mind you’ll be responsible for everything not included in the venue package, and remember you do pay for convenience, and many times it’s so worth it! Consider if it’s worth paying for the venue’s caterer or if it’s cheaper to cater it yourself – or pay an outside vendor. Be realistic – what can you reasonably do the day of the wedding? Consider all your options.
Make It Convenient For Those Attending
If your venue is an hour away from the majority of your guests, the chances of them attending may not be as good as if you picked someplace closer. Have you invited family and friends who will be traveling from another state? What hotel will they be staying at? Keep these factors in mind, and keep the location of your venue centrally located with the needs of those invited in mind.
There’s a lot that goes into choosing the perfect wedding venue? It’s a good idea to design a spreadsheet to help you with the various aspects of your research. This will keep you organized and help you remember the details of each individual venue. Preserve your sanity by keeping detailed notes so you’ll be equipped to make an informed decision when the time comes. If your mind is blown by all these decisions, and your budget allows, consider hiring a wedding planner!
Are you planning a wedding? Have you decided on a venue yet? Let me know in the comments:)