While all aspects of weddings including outfits, wedding cake, flowers and even wedding rings are totally optional, the wedding venue is something that simply cannot be skipped. After all, it is the place where you and your dearest friends and family members will celebrate the happiest day of your life, right?
Finding the right venue that will fit both your budget and your needs can be quite a difficult task. The range of options is so huge, that you probably won’t even know where to start. And that is how this guide was born – to help poor lost souls like you find their dream wedding venue. Take notes.
Ask your wedding planner
Before you even start checking potential venues out, consider talking to your wedding planner first – they pretty much seen it all and know it all. Your wedding planner will do all the necessary research for you, tell you all about the capacity and layout of the space and list all the things you are going to need in order to transform that place according to your personal preferences.
Know the guest list
Before going on a venue hunt, it is important to know how many guests your future venue will need to be able to accommodate. This way you will save yourself a lot of energy. Besides, a general advice is to make the guest list first and not to move to anything else until it is done.
Set your budget
This is the aspect that is going to take around 40% of your budget. Simply renting a certain place isn’t enough – you have to think about decorations, floral designs and many other elements that will require both your attention and money. Therefore, a good idea is to set an exact wedding venue budget. Set more funds aside for things with a higher priority, and for God’s sake do not stress yourself out. Why would you even think about a $20,000 venue if you can only afford a $5,000 one? It will just destroy your mood and waste your time.
Location is important
Would you be okay with providing transport for all guests? If, on the other hand, all of them are driving, is the venue’s parking space big enough? Is the parking free? Even transport expenses can leave a big dent in your budget, so make sure you don’t neglect them. Opt for an easily reachable venue. If you are an Aussie from Sydney, you will not have any problems, because 90 percent of wedding venues in Sydney are amazing in every single aspect.
Know what’s included
If you, for example, are aiming towards full-service venues and ones that allow couples to bring their own staff and décor, take your time to determine the prices of everything. Believe it or not, sometimes you will find a venue fully equipped with tables, chairs and linens for a less price than a venue where you are required to rent your own. This is why you should compare the prices of more than two rental companies and find what suits you best. However, have in mind that most included rentals are the most basic ones like standard flatware and white linens, so you will still end up paying more if you don’t pay a really close attention to what precisely is offered.
Does it fit your needs?
Here is a simple example: let’s say you would like to have a ceremony, a cocktail party and the reception all in one venue, but the venue you’ve picked doesn’t have three separate areas for that. If this is the case, check if they are offering the flip option. This basically means they will be able to turn the ceremony room into a reception area while you and your guests are attending a cocktail party in the other room. Of course, this also needs detail planning: you need to know how will they do it, where will they store reception tables and décor, will this require renting things like fabric wall in order to ‘hide’ all the items, is the space all-weather-appropriate etc. This is going to help you predict all the possible additional costs.
Keeping it authentic
Lately, social media like Instagram and Pinterest pretty much dictate all the trends and can easily have an impact on people’s choice ofž both wedding theme and wedding venue. And it usually happens because they fall in love with that amazing photos and decide to copy those sceneries for their special day. Have in mind that this is your wedding and that it should reflect YOUR tastes and YOUR memories, and that it is something YOU will remember forever. The space, the wedding dress as well as everything else should entirely be a representation of who YOU are.
Do you have some more tips? Feel free to comment.