Top 14 Questions to Ask Your Wedding Venue

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You’re engaged, you just set your date, and you have a rough idea of your style and guest list. What comes next? The venue. Where it’s all going down. One of the most impor­tant ele­ments you have to think about a year or so in advance of the big day.

You may have had the per­fect venue planned since child­hood, but whether you’re des­tined for one loca­tion or still shop­ping around, it’s impor­tant to get all your facts before you com­mit. Here’s a list of the top 14 ques­tions to ask your poten­tial wed­ding venue:

1. Do you have my date available?

Num­ber one ques­tion, can we get mar­ried on our cho­sen day? If your date is set, this could be a deal break­er. If you’re open to oth­er options, though, make sure you ask if they have any close dates avail­able. Anoth­er thing to con­sid­er regard­ing your date, will there be any oth­er events on the same day and how will the venue han­dle them if there are.

2. What is the capacity of the facility?

There will be dif­fer­ent num­bers for dif­fer­ent types of events. Dif­fer­ent num­bers of peo­ple can fit in a room for a seat­ed cer­e­mo­ny, a stand­ing cock­tail recep­tion or a table din­ner recep­tion. Plus, your venue may have a vari­ety of spaces to choose from. Make sure you get a thor­ough list of capac­i­ty. You don’t want to be sur­prised when your 50 guests are dwarfed by a room that holds 200 or your 200 guests don’t fit in a room that only holds 150.

3. What are your fees and how much is the deposit?

Anoth­er very impor­tant ques­tion. Is this venue in your bud­get? Venues are of course impor­tant, espe­cial­ly for the cer­e­mo­ny, but you want to get mar­ried in a beau­ti­ful set­ting with­out break­ing the bank. If it is a lit­tle on the prici­er side, how­ev­er, ask if you can set up a pay­ment plan.

bar at wedding reception

4. What do your fees include?

Many times venues will have time restric­tions, so make sure to ask how many hours you’re allowed to be there and if you need more time, how much extra will that cost. Some venues will also offer staff, AV equip­ment, tables, chairs, linens, or maybe some dec­o­ra­tions. See what your venue will pro­vide and if they charge extra for their use. It may also be a good idea to ask to see the items before­hand to make sure they are up to par.

5. Is there parking available for my guests?

And if not, or not enough spaces, where can we find park­ing? Acces­si­bil­i­ty is impor­tant, too. No mat­ter how much they love you, your 80-year-old grand­par­ents won’t be hap­py about walk­ing five blocks and climb­ing a set of stairs to get to your wed­ding.

6. Can we use any vendor or do you have preferred vendors?

Make sure you get a list of their pre­ferred ven­dors if applic­a­ble well in advance. If your venue caters them­selves, ask if you can set up a time to do a tast­ing. They may also have spe­cif­ic rules regard­ing alco­hol.

7. How long will we have to set up and take down?

Or alter­na­tive­ly, will the venue set up and take down what they pro­vide them­selves? And when can ven­dors behind their set up? Does the four-hour rental time include clean­ing up? Tim­ing is every­thing.

8. If there is an outdoor element, is there a back-up plan?

Rain on your wed­ding day might be a good omen, but you won’t feel that way if you and your guests are get­ting soaked through­out your cer­e­mo­ny. Are there rooms indoors that can be set up just in case? Or per­haps a nice tent?

bride and groom in gray suit at lakefront wedding

9. Are there bridal and groom’s suites?

Mean­ing, where can we get ready? Many venues offer beau­ti­ful rooms specif­i­cal­ly for get­ting dressed on the day of your wed­ding, but you’ll want to dou­ble check. If they don’t have suites, is there any­where else you can use for that pur­pose.

10. What are your decoration rules?

Some venues may not let you have open flame can­dles or hang items from the ceil­ing. Make sure you get a com­plete list of their require­ments before you start plan­ning the decor.

11. Are there any other restrictions?

Like for pho­tog­ra­phy and videog­ra­phy. You want to make sure you’ll be able to get all the shots you want. Or noise restric­tions, a time that the music has to be turned down.

12. Are our food truck, horse-drawn carriage, fireworks, and Ferris wheel allowed?

If you plan on hav­ing any spe­cial require­ments at your wed­ding, what­ev­er they may be, make sure you clear it with the venue first.

13. Is wedding insurance required?

Many venues don’t need insur­ance, but some do, so it’s a good thing to know ahead of time.

14. What is your cancellation policy?

Worst case sce­nario, you want to be pre­pared.

winery wedding styled shoot

The theme of this list is to be thor­ough. You have enough to wor­ry about when plan­ning your wed­ding and even more the day of; you do not want to be caught unawares.

Keep in mind that this is an incom­plete list and the top ques­tions to ask any venue. You’ll want to tai­lor your ques­tion list to your spe­cif­ic venue. For exam­ple, if you’re get­ting mar­ried at a hotel you’ll want to ask about accom­mo­da­tions and book­ing rooms for guests.

Come pre­pared to any meet­ing with a com­plete list of ques­tions and ask to see any and every­thing. You want to make sure you and your guests have the best pos­si­ble expe­ri­ence.

There are so many small details that go into cre­at­ing your dream wed­ding, but that does­n’t mean you should have to stress. Gen­er­a­tion Tux lets you sam­ple your cloth­ing before the big day, in the com­fort of your liv­ing room. See what we have to offer to make your union extra­or­di­nary.

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