You will have picked your date, and begun to visualise your perfect day. All those dreams you had as a little girl are coming to the forefront of your mind, and there is every possibility you will find it overwhelming. Take one decision at a time, and ensure you are able to make informed choices. The perfect venue for your ceremony and reception is crucial to many aspects of your big day, so think long and hard about what your must haves, would likes and bonus extras are. Do lots of research and make a shortlist of possible venues. If your shortlist is still fairly long, it makes sense to phone the venues to have a chat rather than trying to visit them all. If they don’t meet certain criteria, you can cross them off the list until you have a reasonable number of places to look at in person.

Preparing several pre-planned questions is a good way to make sure you find the perfect location for your perfect wedding. Here’s our list to get you started:

  1. What dates are available for the month we’re considering?
  2. How many people can this location accommodate?
  3. What is the rental fee, and what is included in that price? Is there a discount for booking an off-season date or Sunday through Friday?
  4. How much is the deposit, when is it due, and is it refundable? What is the payment plan for the entire cost?
  5. Can we hold our ceremony here too? Is there an additional charge to do this? Is there a bride’s changing area?
  6. What is the cancellation policy?
  7. What’s your weather contingency plan for outdoor spaces?
  8. How long will we have use of the event space(s) we reserve? Is there a minimum or maximum rental time?
  9. Can I decorate to suit my theme, or do I have to leave everything as it is? Are they any decoration guidelines/restrictions?
  10. What time can we/our vendors begin setting up on the day of the wedding? Is it possible to start the setup the day before?
  11. Is there an outdoor space where our guests can mingle, and can it be heated and/or protected from the elements if necessary?
  12. Do you have an in-house caterer or a list of reputable caterers, or do we need to provide our own?
  13. Are tables, linens, chairs, plates, silverware and glassware provided, or will we have to rent them privately?
  14. What is the food and beverage cost on a per-person basis?
  15. Can we carry out a food tasting before finalising our menu selection?
  16. Can we bring in a cake from an outside cake maker, or must we use the cake made on premises?
  17. Can we bring our own wine, beer or champagne, and is there a corkage fee if we do?
  18. Are there restrictions on the type of music we play, or a time by which the music must end?
  19. Is there parking on site? If so, is it complimentary?
  20. What overnight accommodations do you provide? Do you offer a discount for multiple bookings?

These are just a few of the questions that you may need to ask the wedding venues that you are considering for your big day. Making sure you find the perfect location is one of the most important aspects of your day, so take your time over it and consider your options.