Wedding Planning Advice: What to Consider Before Touring Prospective Venues | Atlanta, GA
Touring prospective venues is one of the fun tasks of planning a wedding and naturally, it is usually one of the first things you want to do after saying, "yes". After all, how can you plan a wedding when you don't know where it is going to take place? Selecting the right venue to host your wedding or event is a crucial part of the planning process. It can set the tone for your wedding day and be a contributing factor to many decisions that lie ahead.
Today we are talking about a few things that should be done before even reaching out to prospective venues. Putting a little work in beforehand can not only make the venue selection process more efficient but can also help to avoid the disappointment of touring a venue that you love but is not a good fit for your event or budget.
Step One: Before reaching out to prospective venues I highly suggest working out the details of your budget. We know how easy it is to get swept away in the beauty of a space that you love. You don't want to make the mistake of touring a venue that is too far outside the reach of your budget. If the location is the most important thing to you, you can always prioritize how the remainder of your budget is allocated, but you do want to weigh out your options and ask yourself in the end if it would be a wise financial decision. This is also true when selecting any of your vendors!
Step Two: It is a good idea to draft a guest list early on in the planning process. Of course, the number will not be a final count but this important step can help you eliminate a venue that is not able to accommodate the number of guests you anticipate having on your special day. Determining your guest list early on only helps you in the long run since you will need to know that information when interviewing prospective vendors.
Pro Tip: Don't forget to include your fiancé when drafting the guest list and consider guests that either of your parents may want to invite. Especially if parents are contributing to your wedding financially. If the number of people that you intend to invite is higher than you planned for, don't stress! Typically an average of 15 - 20% of invitees will not attend.
Step Three: Consider what are the must-haves at your event and write them down. It is nice to have that list of must-haves to refer to when asking questions to a prospective venue that way you don't forget to ask an important question even if you get swept up in the excitement! For example, if you know you want to have a full-bar selection for your guests, you will want to ask a prospective venue what their policy is on alcohol. We have worked with venues in the past that only allowed beer and wine to be served and even dry venues. Either option would be out if you planned to serve a full bar.
Step Four: Location, location, location! The location of the venue itself plays a key role in your wedding. If there is significance to a city or certain location to you and your fiancé (i.e. where you first met) you may want to confine your search to certain parameters. On the other hand, if you have many out of town guests, you may want to consider a venue that is close to an airport and has adequate accommodations such as hotels and transportation options for those out of town guests.
Next week we will post part two of our Planning Advice series on venue selection where we will give you some questions that can be asked upfront to help guide you through the process of selecting the right venue for you!