Choosing your wedding venue is one of the first and most important choices you will probably make your planning journey. There are so many factors to consider when you are deciding that it can be a little daunting, so here are our top tips to help out.
- CHURCH WEDDING OR CIVIL SERVICE?
This is the very first thing you will probably want to decide. It’s a very personal choice, and needs to be discussed with your partner as well as your families. It is important to remember that if you have a civil ceremony then you cannot have religious music or readings. If tradition is very important to you, but you are not religious, remember you can have a very classic feel without a church venue being completely necessary. This choice will help you decide whether to have separate ceremony and reception venues, although you can of course have two venues with a civil ceremony as well. Civil ceremony venues have to have a license, but many couples are choosing to do the paperwork before the wedding, and have an outdoor blessing which does not need a licence.
- WHAT DO YOU WANT
It’s really helpful to make a list of your must haves (or not haves!) in the venue. It’s really easy to get wowed by venues once you start researching and falling in love with somewhere only to find later it is too far from Granny Margaret can be hard. Think about capacity, distance, disabled facilities if needed, and importantly price.
Always a tricky one, but setting your budget early helps you stick within your means. Noone wants to be starting married life in lots of debt, so sit down and decide this before looking. You can always change the budget later. When working out the cost quoted by a venue, ensure you are clear on what that does and does not include, and the cost of any extras.
Some venues like you to use their caterers, and some are more flexible. If you have your heart set on a specific style or caterer then it is worth finding a venue that will let you use whomever you choose. If you decide on a package where caterers are included, make sure you get to speak to them directly, get references from previous weddings, and arrange a tasting.
Again, some venues have a bar or drinks suppliers and like you to use them. If you choose not to, they may slap on a corkage charge (around £5-£15 a bottle). Make sure you know what their policy is before you book.
For most brides, the photos are a seriously important part of their wedding day. If you have gone to a lot of effort to get a great photographer, you want to make sure that they look great. So, when you are looking at venues, remember that unfortunately, it might be raining on your wedding day, so check out their indoor spaces for photos as well as outside.
If you have family and friends who will be travelling a long way for your wedding, consider where they are going to stay. Check out nearby hotels and B&Bs and ask about any deals they might do for your wedding party. Another fantastic solution is to hire a whole house for your wedding reception, where you and your guests can stay.
Featured image from Bridal Guide via Pinterest