5 Things To Consider Before Choosing Your Wedding Venue

September 9th, 2022 Wedding Ideas, Tips and Inspiration


You are engaged and as you're making the rounds announcing your engagement, you are getting bombarded with questions. When are you getting married? Where are you getting married? How many guests will be at the wedding?

Wedding planning can seem stressful, but don't panic! Many of these questions can be easily answered once you pick your venue. The venue's availability and capacity will help determine the season you get married in as well as how many guests you can invite. So before putting down that deposit, here are five things to consider before choosing your dream wedding venue.

1) Availability - If you want to get married at a certain time of the year, then be sure to ask about availability on your target wedding date before falling too much in love with the location. You don't want to be heartbroken after finding that perfect venue isn't a viable option. Have a few dates you would like to check on so you can see if any are available. 

2) Budget - The reason why you have a budget is so that you can have a plan for the money you will be spending. You might get swept up in the moment and start spending a little more on the venue, a little more on the cake, and a little more on the food and liquor, but in the end, they all add up. Make sure when determining the budget for the venue you factor in the details, such as outside catering, transportation, decorations, and rental costs. These small details will add up, and what may start out looking like an affordable venue option can turn into an out-of-this-world price.

3) Logistics - Your wedding day will be hectic. You want to make sure that everything is easy for you and your guests. An important factor to consider is the details. Is this venue big enough to hold your guest count? Usually, you won't have to turn in the final guest count until two weeks before the big day, but you should already have a rough idea of how many people you will be inviting. Whether you are planning on having 50, 100, or 150+ guests, make sure your venue can accommodate your guests. Nobody wants to be seated all the way in the corner or separate from the other guests. 

Consider day-of-wedding factors such as traffic to your wedding location and parking availability. If you are getting married in an area that has heavy traffic during your ceremony time, be sure to provide guests with preferred directions and parking so they will be able to navigate to your location. And if you’re planning a destination wedding, consider hotel locations and accommodations.

Also, be sure to ask to see if the venue has pictures of the time of season you plan on getting married in. Yes, the pictures the venue posted on their website are gorgeous, but were they taken during the Spring and Summer? If you are planning on getting married in the Fall or Winter, what will the space look like? Will it still have the beautiful landscape and flowers you loved in the pictures you saw online? This might change the way you plan on decorating your space and factor into the budget for decorations. 

4) Service - Find out if your venue offers full service or partial service. A full-service wedding venue has you covered from tables, chairs, and linen rentals, to catering and sometimes even a wedding planner, while on the flip side, a non-full service place is usually a blank space, and you get to select the rest. 

If your venue is not full service, be sure to ask if you are required to work with certain vendors or if you can use your own vendors. Ask them if you can get a list of preferred vendors that have worked in that space, too. You want to also be able to find vendors that can work within your budget and who are also familiar with the space. 

5) Wedding Style - A sleek rooftop city ceremony, an upscale country club, a romantic garden wedding, or a rustic barn venue all sound great, but which one fits your personal style? 

Finding a venue that fits your style may help to cut down costs on decorations and also make the space feel like your own. 

Before handing over that deposit, don't be afraid to ask questions, and ask a lot of them. You want to make sure that you feel comfortable and know what to expect on your big day. Be sure that before you book your venue location, you read and re-read your contract to understand the cancellation policy, see if there are any "hidden" fees, and the timeline of when you need to make decisions on catering and final head count. If you have chosen your wedding coordinator, have them also look over your venue contract to see if there is anything you need to add or take out. They can also let you know if they have experience working at your preferred venue, which will help you the day-of because they are familiar with the layout and location.

Frequently Asked Questions About Wedding Venues

  • What is the average cost of a wedding?

    • This is important to know when determining the venue part of your budget. According to research, the average cost of a wedding in the United States ranges from $12,000 to $30,000. However, the price can vary greatly depending on several factors, such as the location of the ceremony, the number of guests, the type of food and drink served, and the type of entertainment provided. 

  • How much should your wedding venue budget be?

    • Your venue budget is based on a few key factors, including the size of your guest list, decorations, and catering costs. Generally speaking, you should expect to spend about 40-50% of your total wedding budget on your venue.

  • What are the cheapest types of wedding venues?

    • There are many ways to save money on wedding venues. One option is to have the ceremony and reception at the same location, which is often cheaper than renting two separate event spaces. Another option is to choose a more affordable space, such as a park, beach, or community center. Art galleries and coffee houses also offer less expensive options. Additionally, some couples opt to get married in a friend or family member's home or even an Airbnb rental. A local courthouse will also hold a civil ceremony for less than $100, or sometimes even free.

  • How do I find the best venue for my needs?

    • There are a few essential things to consider in your search. First, think about the overall style and feel of your wedding. Do you want it to be formal or informal? Do you want an indoor or outdoor wedding? Second, consider your budget. How much can you afford to spend on the venue? Third, think about the size of your guest list. How many people will be in attendance?

  • What is most important when selecting a venue?

    • The most important thing to consider when selecting a space is finding one that you love. You'll want to choose a venue style that matches the overall theme and vibe of your special day. Additionally, you'll want to ensure that the event space is large enough to accommodate all of your guests comfortably.

Now that you know what to look for when choosing your dream location, it’s time to find the perfect wedding gown for your venue. Start your search for beautiful wedding dresses here!

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