Choosing a venue for the wedding and reception is a big part of the wedding planning. The most popular locations fill up quickly. The couple may feel rushed to choose a wedding venue quickly. Before you make a decision, consider some of the possible problems that can occur with wedding venues. If you rush booking a venue before investigating their rules, you may find that their rules prohibit you from doing some of the things you definitely want at your wedding.
Are the rates different for different days and times? When are deposits and payments due? The couple needs to make sure that the wedding venue fits well within their budget. If the wedding date needs to be changed or cancelled, is there a cancellation policy? Make sure you have a clear understanding of any associated costs and fees that may be added such as cleaning and parking fees.
Must your vendors be used? Venues may have a list of vendors that are their “approved vendors.” You may be required to use their florist, caterer, or photographer. Since these professionals know they are the only approved vendors for that venue, they might charge higher prices.
What happens if it rains? If you are looking at outdoor venues, you will want to know what the plans are for rainy days. A venue may have tents that they set up for the ceremony and reception. They might only set up one tent to be used for both the ceremony and reception.
Is alcohol consumption permitted? Some venues will not allow any alcohol on the premises. That champagne toast that you had your heart set on will not be permitted at a venue prohibiting alcohol. Make sure that the rules of the venue don’t contradict with the plans that you had for the reception. Other venues may provide alcohol. If that is the case, you may want to ask about the prices of alcohol.
Are candles allowed? Are there restrictions on decorations? Who is responsible for removing the decorations and cleaning up after the wedding and reception? The couple will need to know who has the responsibility for restoring the room to its pre-reception condition.
What times would my wedding guests be allowed to arrive and when must they leave? Some venues book more than one wedding in a single day. An AM wedding may leave the guests feeling rushed to leave. The PM wedding may mean that your florist or others helping with decorations may feel rushed to get everything ready before the wedding.
The couple may want to ask about the availability of parking, restrooms, and whether or not the venue is handicap accessible. Couples who plan to have dancing and music at the reception may want to ask about the space and any noise restrictions.
Couples should feel comfortable asking the questions and not feel rushed or scrutinized for inquiring. It’s important that you know exactly what is expected before agreeing to the wedding venue. For more tips about wedding planning, browse the Best for Bride blog for helpful advice.