How to Select Your Wedding Venue
Some people grow up dreaming of the exact location where they want to get married. For most of us, that’s not the case. For most of us, we have maybe selected the time of year, and that’s about it.
Before you begin scheduling tours, here are some topics for you two to prioritize over a bottle of wine:
Budget. Hopefully, you’ve already had this discussion and have a good idea of how much you want to allocate at your venue. If you’re working with a tighter budget, perhaps you want to focus on venues that have in-house food/beverage so that you don’t need to consider additional rental costs. Maybe your budget is a bit healthier, and you want to focus on venues that have a breathtaking view and opportunity for custom menus. Either way, make sure you’re walking into the conversation with a good understanding of what you can afford so that you aren’t falling in love with venues that will break your heart.
Guest Count. One of the first questions the venue manager is going to ask you for is your preliminary guest count. This allows them to talk you through the floor plan options; can they offer both ceremony and reception on site with your guest count? Will they get creative with room dividers because you have a very small guest count? Will they recommend king tables to save room because you have a large guest count? Also, they will likely walk you through their food and beverage packages at the end of the tour, so having a number of heads in mind will help them to easily draw up an estimate for you.
Guest experience. Is it important to you to have accommodations nearby, or even on site? If not, did you leave room in your budget for transportation? Do you have a lot of out of town guests? Consider making room in your budget for welcome bags with some local treats and itinerary for the weekend. If accommodations are on site, ask if the staff will help to distribute these at check-in. Guest experience tends to be something that is inherently important to most couples, so make sure you’re thinking through what will make out of town guests feel more at ease and worry free.
Aesthetic/Style. It may seem a bit early in the planning process to be concerned with your Pinterest board. However, having an idea of what style brings you joy is absolutely part of venue selection. If you love farm tables, you probably want to avoid traditional ballrooms. If you have traveled the world and are envisioning a Tuscan theme, you should narrow your focus towards industrial buildings or even a tent wedding.
Finding a venue is a delicate balance between remaining budget-conscious and choosing the place that makes you feel giddy. Not sure where to start, or how to allocate your budget to avoid heartache? That is one of the first steps in the planning process with Honey Dew Events. We’ll talk through the topics above, and make a strong plan to find you the perfect venue.