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Questions For Previewing Wedding Venues

by Judith Rivers-Moore, The WeddingLinks Coach

Once you have the DATE (or approximate date), Three important things stand out when you are beginning to look at, and preview wedding venues.  You may want an all-inclusive location, a destination wedding site with guest rooms, a garden that deals well with rainfall, a beachside setting.  You will find halls, church reception rooms, and community centers are more affordable.  

Please understand if you are working with a professional wedding planner, she/he may introduce you to wedding sites where she can continue to work.  If the planner is not allowed to assist you at the wedding site you choose, it would be silly to introduce you to a place she cannot work.              

  • 1. Narrow down your searches to the style you want, historical, environmental, industrial, hotel, resort, barn, unique.
  • 2. Your number of guests.(after you have everyone's list in) Remember groomsmen and bridesmaids will each be offered to include a guest, as well as your officiant and the wedding planner.
  • 3. Review your personal style and your preferences & wedding dreams. You are about to spend a great deal of money and each of you should find "what makes a perfect wedding". 

Create your budget (find a great one in our "Wedding Manifesto" planning book FORMS)

  1. Understand you will need 1/3 of your funds for deposits up front to contract specific dates from a venue or vendor. 
  2. Try to put off purchasing your dress until your intended agree on the type of wedding location and style wedding you are planning to have. 
  3. Always ask for a written contract from any venue or wedding service you hire.   
  4. Consider researching our for wedding site possibilities. It is not unusual for the ceremony to be held 10 or 20 miles from the reception site. WeddingLinks has hundreds of wedding sites in each USA state for every budget.  We also offer links to favorite destination wedding locations worldwide.  Go To The Area of this website

A wedding site may look nice on the internet, there are six things you specifically will want to know prior to going to review the site.

  • Is the wedding venue available on the day you want to be married?
  • If not, what are the options on the calendar. Friday or a Sunday?
  • The number of guests the site will host. (If a smaller wedding, can you utilize the site?)
  • Are you required to use their list of wedding professionals or staff?
  • What are the setup times, and the in and out times for the venue?
  • Are they doing more than one wedding at this venue each day?
  • If this Is the location that your family member or best friend used. (you may end up replicating their wedding.)

Consider these questions and review items as you go to review the wedding site.

  • When you arrive - what is the entrance like, is the site clean, painted well, floors in good condition, review the bathrooms, check for ample parking?
  • Is the tour host or hostess on time for the appointment?
  • You need to ask about audio, lighting, tables, chairs, linens.  What comes with the cost of the rental
  • Some sites have extreme "add-ons".  What would the total cost be?
  • Some sites have agreements to hold the date for a limited length of time. Some ask for hold deposits.  
  • Once you decide to book the venue, you will sign an agreement (contract) review this carefully.  Look for time in and time out, their clean up rules, the charges, and fees for overtime (if any). 
  • Most venues deal with a local ordinance for a time the party/event must be over.
  • Venues are booked usually with a 33% or 50% deposit.  Most have payment systems.  
  • TIP:  If you book a hotel or a resort, Call the hotel or resort' event hostess or catering department occasionally to make certain your booking is still in effect.  They change their wedding hostess/planner often and sometimes the dates do not remain on the books. With a hotel contract, it is important to put the exact room name you are using - in the contract !!

Please Ask These Questions

1. Is the location available on the date you want?
2. Do you do more than one event a day and how many hours are available for us?
3. Is there a rule on using your selected vendor's list?
4. Is this an indoor/outdoor facility?
5. What is the fee and what other charges are there?
6. What is the deposit?
7. Do you have an on-site coordinator?
8. Is a day-of coordinator required to use the location?
9. Do you have a lower fee for Sunday through Friday?
10. Does the site have tables, chairs, linens, etc?
11. Is there a cleaning service and a day-of staff person available?
12. Is parking available?
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