A wedding venue will mean different things for different couples. For you it might just be a reception space, for others it will be where you hold your ceremony too, and for some, it will be a base for several days of festivities, with accommodation thrown in too. The spaces themselves will differ and the options are endless!
So to help you make your choice here’s a list of questions to ask your venue when you visit. Now of course not all of these will apply to you or venue but there are some you might never have thought of, that could crop up later in your planning.
Availability, Cost & Capacity
- What is the venue capacity for a seated meal?
- Is there a minimum spend?
- Do you have you different rooms/spaces to choose from?
- Is there a marquee option?
- Are you licensed to host civil wedding ceremonies?
- Do you have public liability insurance?
- What is the cancellation policy?
- How many weddings do you have a day/week?
- Do you offer catering?
- If not, are there kitchen facilities, serveware and tableware?
- Can you cater for those with special requirements and allergies?
- Do you offer tastings?
- Can we see your drinks/bar menu and pricing?
- Can we bring our own alcohol?
- If so, what is the charge for corkage?
- Where will the cocktail hour be held?
- Is there a fee for bringing our own cake or desserts?
- What time does the bar close?
- Do you offer bar/venue extensions?
- Is there a bridal suite included?
- If not, have you a large room for pre-ceremony prep/hair & make-up?
- Do you include rooms in the wedding package?
- Can we stay the night before?
- Can we block book rooms for our guests?
- Is it accessible for disabled guests?
- Are there baby changing facilities?
- Are children welcome, is there a time they need to leave by?
- Can we see the bathrooms?
- Do you have on-site parking?
- If not, Do you offer a shuttle service?
- Is there a smoking area?
Staffing & Technicalities
- Do you provide staff?
- Is there a service charge or what is the tipping policy?
- Is there a wedding co-ordinator?
- Who will be running things on the day?
- What are the turnaround times (if we’re using the same space twice for ceremony/dinner/dancing?)
- What AV equipment do you offer? (Speakers, a PA, mics, iPod docs, sockets etc).
- Can we get in the day before/early in the morning for set-up?
- Are we responsible for the take-down and when does it need to be done?
- How late can we stay at the venue?
- What time can we play music until?
- Are their any music/noise restrictions?
- Are we allowed confetti?
- What if it’s an especially hot/cold/windy/wet day?
- Is there a secure space for gifts?
Decor & Details
- Do you offer tables and chairs (and can we see them)?
- Can we bring our own chairs and tables?
- When can rental companies deliver them ahead of the wedding?
- Do you have an inventory of the rest of your decor (vases, candleholders etc)?
- Do you have a fixed list of approved vendors or can we bring our own?
- Are we allowed to hang lights or decor from the walls or ceilings?
- Can we do this ourselves or do we need contractors?
- What does the venue look like at night?
- What, if any lighting do you supply?
- Can we have candles/fireworks/sparklers/food trucks/horse and carriage/lawn games/kids activities etc? (Basically any special requirements or dealbreakers.)