When considering your wedding venue, the devil is in the detail. Make sure you know exactly what you will be getting and how much it will cost before committing to anything, especially a deposit.
Weddings are complex social events which require much organisation no matter how modest.
The biggest expense relating to your venue is food and drink. Often venues have an in-house catering team which can sometimes limit your options.
Don’t give up on your dream venue. Just remember where there is a will there is a way!
Be flexible. If you love a venue but it doesn’t conform to exactly what you had in mind. Consider limiting the number of guests you invite to help stay within budget. If scaling down your guest list isn’t an option, you could always have a cocktail reception. Whilst this is all good and well I would be cautious not to throw the rule book out the window just yet. Cocktail receptions can sometimes be deceiving and end up costing more than a sit-down dinner if you are not careful. You will always need some seating space for grandparents etc. and don’t forget about those who don’t cope with heels very well. One way around this is to invite everyone to bring a change of shoes.
Consider booking venues during quieter times or out of season. There is always more room for negotiation. Weekdays or Winter weddings can still be showstoppers.
One thing we’ve noticed with venues is that sometimes they will squeeze as many people into a space as possible, be clear about seating arrangements and whether a room can seat say 180 people comfortably, or whether it’s a squash. Often seats are back to back with little room for guests, catering staff or photographers to get around. Roomy is good but can come at a cost.
Always make sure you meet the person who will be in charge of your wedding day. Sometimes you meet event co-ordinators who won’t be in charge on the day. This is bad. You need someone competent who will inspire you with confidence. You don’t want to be running around organising everything yourself when you should be having a party.
If hiring a venue which is open to the public, make sure you know if there are spaces which will be exclusive and it’s also important to establish whether yours will be the only wedding on the day. Of course, weddings are social events but there is a line. The other wedding party could be nuts!
We have photographed many a wedding at wonderful venues so feel free to get in touch if you want any recommendations. We are always happy to help.