The Venue Search
Booking your venue is one of the first wedding “To-Dos” you’ll want to mark off your list. Your venue determines your wedding date, location, and over-all wedding style/feel. Things really start to feel real when you have a date and a venue! And while choosing your venue is super exciting, it can also majorly eat into your budget.
The good news is choosing a budget-eating venue is completely preventable! In order to save money and pick the best venue option, you simply need to ask the right questions! In today’s post, we will go over 16 *Money-Saving* Questions to ask Wedding Venues before you decide which one to book. Having the answers to these questions for venue option comparison will relieve stress and help you save the big bucks!
Stick around ’til the end and you’ll get a Fillable “workbook” Version of the questions to take with you to each venue!
16 *Money-Saving* Venue Questions:
1.Does this venue offer additional services? The owner of our venue was actually a florist too, so our flowers were included in the venue price! This service may not be available everywhere, but a lot of venues offer bartending staff, wait staff, wedding cakes, or even full catering services. Additional venue services can save you SO much!
2. Does this venue include tables, chairs, and linens? This can save you hundreds, even thousands of dollars. Seriously, just renting enough chairs for your guests to sit in can add up big time. So if your venue can offer and include them in the venue price, take it!
3. Does this venue have existing (and nice) furniture? I know it is on trend to get married in a warehouse or barn or another type of abandoned structure (which is awesome in many ways) but many of these venues are completely empty. What is your food going to sit on? Your band? Your gifts? If your venue doesn’t provide furniture, guess who will have to? YOU! Which can be both inconvenient and pricey!
4. Does this venue have basic décor options? A lot of venues are able to provide options for basic pieces like easels, candles, candelabras, crates, barrels, and much more. This will save you so much! Not every venue will have a storage house full of fancy decor, but it will still help tremendously if your venue can provide a few basics. It’s seriously the little things that cause us to break those weddings budgets!
5. Will there be any other weddings scheduled during our wedding weekend? This is a huge one. You will potentially have to schedule your rehearsal or getting ready times around other events. It’s good to ask if they have/or plan to schedule any other events that weekend in advance so you can plan accordingly.
6. Will there be a place to store our décor, alcohol, food, etc. before the wedding? When can we drop it off? If you are doing a lot of DIY or brining a lot of your own décor, be sure there will be a safe place to put it and you can drop it off ahead of time. You don’t want to be hauling décor in your wedding dress the day of the wedding! A lot of venues will allow you to bring it to your rehearsal the night before if there is not another event.
7. What venue staff will be present on wedding day? What is their role? This is super important. You want to know who to turn to on wedding day and know exactly who can help. You also want to clarify their role in advance. You don’t want to rely on the venue staff to make your centerpieces look pretty when they want nothing to do with the pretty stuff. Some venues are logistics only!
8. When does the “clock” start on wedding day? Different venues do this differently, but be sure you clarify how long you can be at the venue and when your time starts on wedding day. Most venues start the clock when the first person/vendor that belongs to your wedding arrives.
9. What time do we have to be out? Clarify the end time. When the venues says “end at 11:00 PM” it usually means everybody (including vendors) has to be out by that time. Be sure though- some mean the reception will end at 11:00PM and everyone has to be out by 11:30PM or midnight.
10. What is the parking situation? Be sure there is enough parking for your guests. Ask if there is a parking fee and if there is a penalty for cars being left there overnight (someone may need to!).
11. Can a limo access the venue? If you are hiring a limo service, be sure the limo can fit in the driveway of the venue!
12. Does this venue allow sparklers? Some have strict fire policies against them! Also ask if they have the supplies to execute the sendoff : lighters, blow torch, buckets of sand, etc.
13. Security Deposit and Payment Plan: Be sure the payment plan is spelled out in writing in the contract! It is even better to discuss it in detail out loud with the venue representative to make sure everything is clear up front.
14. Double Booking Protocol: Be sure you read any fine print in the contract about double booking. It’s rare, but double bookings do happen. If there is nothing in the contract about it, ask them their protocol before you sign anything!
15. Venue Shut Down Protocol: I’ve heard a few horror stories about venues going out of business or shutting down before weddings. Be sure you read this fine print in the contract too. Again, it’s rare, but I have heard of it happening. If there is nothing in the contract about it, ask them their protocol before you sign anything!
16. Inclement Weather Procedure *for an outside wedding*: Does this venue have a procedure in place to move the wedding inside in case of rain? Some venues are ready to roll if it looks like rain, but others don’t have any sort of plan. Make sure your venue has a Plan B so you don’t have to worry about a thing if it rains!
Now Go Find the Venue of your Dreams
I hope these questions are helpful in your venue search! If you have any other questions are need my input on anything, please let me know! I’m here to help!
Don’t forget to download your Fillable Worksheet version of the questions to take with you to each venue! Click Here to Download!
Happy Wedding Planning!
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