Planning your wedding - The Wedding Venue
Choosing your perfect wedding venue is one of the biggest part of wedding planning. It will set the scene for the whole day, and of your memory, so you need to make sure you pick a venue that is perfect for you, your partner and the style of wedding you're dreaming of, without forgetting that you also have guests to take care of. If you are not hiring a Wedding Planner, make sure you have as many information as possible from the venue. So before you sign the contract, make sure you ask your venue these few key questions that will make you sleep sweetly till the end of the Wedding.
Is there a corkage charge? Talking of alcohol, it's worth finding out if your venue charge for you to bring in your own drinks. Whether you're thinking of alcoholic wedding favours make sure you won't get hit with a hefty bill if you want to provide your own alcohol. Some property may not allow this at all due to health and safe regulation
Do you have a noise limiter? Some wedding venues have noise limiters fitted that will make your entertainment cut out if it goes above a certain volume. If you're planning on a loud band you might want to check this won't be an issue.
Can we have candles? Candles
can really add a romantic ambience to your wedding but not all venues will
allow them due to fire risks. If you have your heart set on a candlelit soiree,
it's best to clear this up in advance.
Wedding fireworks: Are fireworks allowed? Do I need to pay for a licence - Wedding fireworks can really finish your night off with a bang, but not every wedding venue will allow them due to various restrictions. If fireworks are non-negotiable, make sure you check this out.
How soon can we access the venue? If you're planning a day full of DIY decorative details, you might need to get there the day before to set it up. Find out how soon you're allowed access to your venue so you can plan accordingly. Asking also how late you can go to take all decor out will also help you to plan according
Do you have baby-changing facilities? If you have children and babies attending your wedding, make sure there are the appropriate facilities in place. If you have a lot of children on the guest list it might be worth asking about a room that can be used as a crèche or children's entertainment area, and checking for any potential hazards such as ponds within the grounds.
Can our photographer/videographer visit the venue in advance? Some photographers and videographers like to visit the venue in advance to get a lay of the land and to scope out potential photography opportunities and picture perfect settings. It can make things run more smoothly on the day, so check this is ok with your venue.
What happens to any unopened alcohol? If you've paid for a set amount of alcohol and not all of it is used, will you get to keep it, get your money back or just lose it? Find out what your venue's policy on this is.
Are their quieter areas away from the entertainment? Older guests don't always want to be right by the DJ - find out if your venue has a separate bar area or snug where your guests can escape for a quiet chat if they need to.
Do you have public liability insurance? It might not be the first question that springs to mind, but it's important! This means the cost of any legal action is covered if anyone is injured or damaged is caused to the building. If the answer is no, walk away.
Will we have exclusive use of the venue? or Do you do more than one wedding a day? Some venues offer exclusive use as standard, others don't. The idea of sharing your wedding day with another couple might not fancy some people, but if you want your day to be all about you, make sure you check this with your venue. Knowing if the venue use to host 2 weddings a day (lunch and dinner) will make you aware on how to plan your day perfectly.
Do you have disabled access? Some historic wedding venues may not have access for disabled guests - if you know some of your guests may have difficulty with stairs etc., be sure to check with your venue to make sure they have disabled access.
How late will the bar be open until? This will depend on the venue's licensing laws - some could be licensed until 10pm, others until 2am and by the country. Find out before you book so you don't have bored guests if the bar closes early.
Can we have a late extension? There is a way around an early night - you might be able to apply for a late extension at some venues, but they do need to be approved by local authorities first and it may end up costing you. But if you like to party, it could be worth it!
Is a menu tasting included? Some wedding venues will include a menu tasting as part of the package, others charge for it and some don't do them at all. If the food is a big part of the day for you, it's best to check this one out.
What are the minimum and maximum guest numbers? Make sure you know the minimum and maximum amount of guests that can attend before you book.
How long in advance do we need to tell exact number of guests. What's the minimum guaranteed? This is quite important to ask when you expect a big number of guests and wait for RPSVP. As you may know, price of the menu may vary by the size of the wedding, therefor giving a big number to expect a better price may result dangerous (for your pocket) when then giving the final count. Better to give a smaller number of potential guests and ask the date limit for give the real number. It's also important to ask what's the minimum number of guests to guarantee and what happens if few guests don't show up.
Do we get complimentary use of the bridal suite? Sometimes venues will offer couples complimentary use of the bridal suite as part of their packages. If it's not included, it's always worth asking about...especially if you're looking for ways to save money on your wedding.
What happens if it rains on the day? This is particularly important if you're planning an outdoor wedding ceremony or want lots of photographs outdoors. If it rains, what is the venue's contingency plan and are you happy with it?
What is the payment schedule? In fact, is there a payment schedule? And does it work with your wedding budget? There's nothing more soul destroying than falling for a place that won't work with your budget so be upfront about this.
Is our deposit refundable? All venues will require a deposit when you book, but some will refund it if you have to cancel for certain reasons. Check out what their terms are before you sign on the dotted line.