Picking your venue is going to be the biggest decision in your wedding planning and the most expensive part of your budget. For the average wedding your venue will be approximately 30% of your total wedding budget, increasing to nearly 50% if they provide food and drink as well. Picking your venue is one of the first decisions you will make because it will then lock in your wedding date, let you see how much of your budget you have left to spend and to a certain degree inspire the look, feel and design of your wedding day.⠀⠀
Your wedding venue must-haves
Start by thinking about your ideal wedding day and drawing up a ‘must haves’ list that your venue has to offer and ‘nice to haves’ that you would like it to include but that aren’t deal breakers. This could be things like location, budget, catering, is it licensed, what comes included in the fee, facilities, style for example. It is super important to put some serious consideration into this part before you head into the research phase. It will allow you to ensure your day is truly you and that any compromises you have to make are made with as much information as you can.
I can’t tell you the number of brides and grooms I have worked with who have either gone over budget at this point, making the rest of their planning way more stressful than it has to be, or, picked a venue which didn’t tick all their main criteria so they end up compromising at every point of their planning. This again makes for a less than enjoyable planning journey. If you are using the Wedding Blueprint to help with your planning there are lots of pages included in the planner to help you fine tune your ideas to help you pick your perfect wedding venue.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Then use your criteria to shortlist based on a very simple internet and social media search. If it’s proving difficult, try each scoring out of 5 against your criteria to get an average score to rate them.
Here are some great directory sites to help with your venue search:
Your venue shortlist
Once you have a shortlist contact them with your ideal date, or selection of dates, get hold of their brochure and ask for clarity on any questions you may have. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Use this information to refine your shortlist again making sure you are staying true to your wish list. Read testimonials and get really in-depth with your research. Hopefully by now you should have a handful of venues which fit your criteria and you want to see in the flesh! Venue visits are a whole other topic of conversation….. maybe that should be my next blog!?⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ If you need more tips and tricks for picking your venue pick up your own copy of The Wedding Blueprint planner!