Picking out your venue can be one of the hardest things to do and the first stressful decision you and your fiance are going to make together after saying yes to his proposal. Opinions will vary on what is right for the two of you, but trust me you will find the perfect venue for you to say “I do” and to celebrate with your closest family and friends. Here are some tips to help you get through all those site tours you have lined up.
- How many hours are included in the rental?
Make sure to know what you are going to be paying for, does the “5 hour room rental” block include set up and tear down? If set up and tear down is not included in this time, how much time do you have to set up and does a planner at the venue do it for you or do you have to do it yourself? Does it include the ceremony? Can you add on extra time to the room block? Make sure to know all the details on the time because this can make or break your ceremony and reception.
- When can you bring in decor and rental items?
Some venues only let you bring in decor the day of and some let you bring it in the day before. Make sure you know when you can bring in these items, especially if you have a lot of decor/rental items. If you store your items there is there an extra cost and when do you have to pick them up? Also, finding out where to load in and out with these items is essential to making your day a little easier.
- What items do you have to rent in?
Does the venue provide tables, chairs, linens, table settings, glassware, etc.? What vendors do you have to bring in? Some venues provide catering and set up and some do not, make sure you know what you are getting into before you book. The price may look low, but once you start adding in vendors and rentals the price can go up drastically.
- What vendors can you can bring in and do you have to use theirs?
Ask if you can bring in your own vendors, some venues require you use their preferred vendors and some venues let you bring in anyone. This includes asking about DJ, bands, catering, staffing, photographer, officiant and dessert.
Make sure to know where all the restrooms are for your guest and if they are easily accessible. This may not seem like a big deal, but it might be to your guests.
- Do you have to provide your own alcohol or does it come from the venue?
This can be one of the biggest expenses of your wedding, be sure to plan it right. Does the venue provide the alcohol or does it come through you? This is important for both you and your venue, you don’t want to jeopardize a venues liquor license.
- Does the venue do more than one event per day?
This is a very important question to ask and I always find that it can be the selling point for most venues. Some venues will host multiple weddings per day and depending on the space you might see another bride on your big day. Ask about times that other events may be going on. You don’t want to share your big day.
- Ask about lighting and electricity that the venue can provide.
Some venues have really good or poor lighting, ask to see the different lighting and options while on your site tour. Also, make sure that they can provide electricity to your vendors and that there will be enough outlets so there are no problems.
- Make sure to know their payment options and cancellation policy.
You never know what might happen, make sure you know everything in case of an emergency. Also, make sure to know how they accept payments; whether it is all at once, before the event or in payments. You want to make your day as least stressful as possible.
Remember you can never ask enough questions at a site tour and make sure you know all the details before signing a contract.