Choosing your venue is one of the most difficult parts of planning your wedding. There’s so much to consider, and so many of your decisions are contingent upon the type of venue you choose. For example, if you splurge on a dream venue, you may have to cut back on the number of guests you can invite. Or if you select a budget-friendly venue, you may have to rent everything you’ll need, making your costs accidentally skyrocket.
Because Wildflower is dedicated to helping you out — we’re sharing everything you need to ask your venue prior to booking! And, of course, we aren’t leaving a single thing out. We quite literally recommend pulling this blog post out on your phone as you’re meeting with your venue, because these 30 questions will have ya covered!
Pricing + Availability
Starting with the obvious and most important: how much the venue costs, and whether they have space available for your desired date. This is why choosing your venue should always be one of the first things you do in planning your wedding. Beginning the planning process assuming you’ll be able to get married at a certain space on a certain date is a bold freaking move that we do not recommend.
Here’s what to ask in regards to pricing and availability:
- Is my date available?
- What are the rates for different days of the week and different seasons (Friday vs. Saturday vs. Sunday or Spring vs. Fall)
- What is the rental fee for the venue?
- What is included in the total (i.e. service charges, gratuity, and cleaning fees)
- How much is the deposit?
- What’s your date change, cancellation or covid policy?
- Do you have an installment plan available?
Next up: the need-to-know. These questions are some serious wedding planner tea. It can be easy to get caught up in the beauty of a venue, especially after you hear that they’re within your budget and available on your desired date, but don’t let it all go to your head — these logistical questions are necessary to ask before you say “I Do” to that dream venue.
Here’s what to ask when it comes to logistics:
- How many guests can the space accommodate?
- How many hours are included in the rental of the space?
- How early can we arrive, and how late can we stay (vendors, bridal party, guests)?
- Is there adequate on-site parking? Is it free? Valet?
- Are there noise restrictions?
- Do you have a rain backup plan?
- How many receptions or other events will be booked for the same day?
- What is the typical schedule for the entire event, from ceremony to the end?
This is where things could get tricky. If you fall in love with a venue, but they tell you that you can’t use any vendors who aren’t on their Approved list, you’ll find yourself in between a rock and a hard place. Asking these important questions about the vendor team will help you solidify your venue decision.
Here’s what to ask about vendors:
- Do we have to use your approved vendors?
- If not, are there limitations or guidelines we need to meet when bringing others in?
- Who will be our point person as we plan our wedding?
- Who will be our point person on our wedding day?
- Do we need to provide our own day of coordinator?
Ah, food. The low-key cash freaking cow of wedding planning. Food and beverage can be pricy! And sometimes venues have funky rules when it comes to liquor pricing and serving.
Here’s what to ask about food and booze:
- Do you have an in-house caterer? If so, are food and beverages included in the venue rental fee?
- If there is not an in-house caterer, do we have to choose from a list of approved options, or can we hire our own caterer?
- Do you have a food and beverage minimum? What are the consequences if we don’t meet it?
- Do we have to purchase liquor through you, or can we source liquor elsewhere?
- If we can bring our own liquor onto the property, is there a corkage or service fee?
Knowing the specifics of your event is KEY to planning the successful wedding you’ve always dreamed of. Making sure you ask the nitty-gritty details will ensure that you don’t run into any unwanted surprise restrictions after you’ve signed on the venue’s dotted line.
Here are the event-specific Qs you need to ask:
- How many hours does the rental fee include, and is there an overtime fee if I stay longer?
- Are there any décor restrictions (i.e. can I use candles?)
- Will your staff be involved in setting up and breaking down the décor? In what capacity?
- Are tables, chairs, linens etc included?
- Do you have a bridal suite or getting ready area available?
With this list, you will be good as golden — and you’ll be ready to find the perfect venue for your big day! But, of course, if you’d like a little help with the planning, you know where to find us! Send Wildflower a message about working together here or click here to browse our services!