9 Questions to Ask Your Wedding Venue
Where to host your ceremony and reception is one of the most important – and most difficult – decisions in the wedding planning process. The ideal wedding venue must meet a specific set of criteria – price, location, size, appearance, etc. – to be the right choice for your celebration. Have you narrowed down your options to a short list of venues? Here are the essential questions you need to ask before making a decision and signing a contract.
1. Do you have experience hosting weddings or other large events (such as birthday parties, corporate events, rehearsal dinners)?
You will want to make sure they have the capacity to handle an event with many guests, vendors and other moving pieces.
2. Is it possible to host both the ceremony and the reception here?
You can often save money and make logistics easier if you choose a single venue in which to exchange matching wedding bands and dance the night away. Ask if this is feasible, and follow up with specific questions about the space available and the work required to convert it from dining room to reception area.
3. What are the rates for different days of the week, months of the year or times of day? Do you offer different packages, or are prices customizable? Are there any additional service fees or charges?
Be very straightforward when you start talking about payment. Ask for all the options so you can compare prices and make the best decision for your wedding planning budget and timeline. Get a written list of all the rates if possible.
4. Are there any restrictions on which vendors we can use (for example, only using the in-house caterer or choosing from a list of approved vendors)?
This is an important question to ask if you have your heart set on a certain catering company, florist or DJ. Make sure you know how much choice and flexibility you have around vendors.
5. Do you have a facility director or event coordinator who will be here on the wedding day?
It’s extremely helpful to have go-to person to manage everything at the venue on your wedding day. Ask if this person will be present and what his or her responsibilities will be.
6. What is the deposit to reserve the venue for our date? What is the cancellation policy?
Verify the total amount you will need to pay for the reception, as well as the deadlines for each stage of payment.
7. Are children allowed? Is there an age cutoff?
This is especially important if you have your heart set on your friends’ children coming to the reception or your little nephew carrying the matching wedding bands down the aisle as the ring bearer.
8. Is there a time limit or are there any noise restrictions we should know about?
Be clear about the kind of wedding reception you plan on throwing – if you want a late-night dance party with a full bar but the venue prefers a subdued string quartet and wine and beer only, now is the time to find out.
9. Are there any recent clients I can speak to?
If a venue makes referrals available, take advantage of them! Ask previous clients about their personal experiences and recommendations.
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