Are you still hunting for your wedding venue? Today I am going to share with you some questions you should ask before you sign the contract for your wedding venue.
1. Wedding Date
Do you have a certain season or a particular date you want to get married? Ask if the date you want is available--if it’s not available, see if there is another date open during that month. Remember, popular wedding venues book up very fast. Call venues you are interested in as soon as you get engaged! Also, it is important to find out if there will be other events at your venue on your wedding day. If there will be other events, find out how your guests will know where to go and what kind of event will be at your venue.
2. Payments and Fees
Find out how much of a deposit is required, and when the final payment is due. Some venues require the payment to be paid in full several months before the wedding. Find out what exactly is included with your payment to book your venue. Some places include tables, chairs, linens, set-up and tear-down with the cost of the venue. However, other venues may have “hidden fees” where you pay extra for things such as renting tables and chairs and clean up services. Find out about any hidden fees in advance. Most venues book for a certain amount of hours--usually 6 or 8 hours. Find out how much overtime hours cost per hour in case you decide to dance the night away for a few more hours.
3. Head Count
Think about your guest list, and how many people you are planning to invite. Find out how many people can fit comfortably inside of the venue. You want to find a venue that can fit all of the guests you are planning to invite. Keep in mind that not everyone responds to RSVPs; and that people that live out of town may not be able to come.
Find out where your guests will park, and if there will be a charge to park their cars or for valet service. Take into consideration the cost for valet services, and who it will be paying for the valet services. If it is you, remember to add that into your budget.
Some venues have certain vendors that you are required to use. Find out the venue's guidelines for using outside catering, photographers, and DJ services. Find out when the vendors will be able to start setting up, and where they will park. When a wedding venue gives you business cards of other vendors make sure to give those vendors a call! That means your venue has done TONS of business with the vendors, and the venue really liked their services. It is always good to use a vendor with experience at your wedding venue!
6. Discounts & Off Days
It is cheaper to get married on a Friday or a Sunday at some places. Your venue will be a big chunk of your wedding budget. If you’re looking to save a little bit of money, try and book your wedding on a Friday or a Sunday. Find out if off-day discounts apply at the venue you are thinking about, and if any weekends are excluded (such as Memorial Day Weekend). Some venues (among other vendors) may have a Military Discount. My husband is in the Army, so several of our vendors gave us a Military Discount.
7. Bridal Suite
Find out if there is a Bridal Suite to get dressed in, and where the groom and his groomsmen will be able to get ready. Find out if it is possible to take a look at the room where you will get ready.
Do your homework, and know a little bit about the venue before you go to your appointment. Remember, if you fall in love with a venue book as soon as possible to reserve your wedding date. Happy venue hunting!