Congratulations on your engagement! One of the first things you will do to begin your wedding planning is decide on a location. Each venue varies in important information including pricing, rules and requirements making it difficult to keep it all straight. Although this can seem overwhelming, there is no need to worry! With a few tips you can easily find the perfect venue!
1. Refine Your Search- I have found that most brides begin their search online. If you start in a search engine, like Google, be specific in your key words. For example, use the words “Outdoor Wedding Venue in Atlanta Georgia”.
- Make sure to look at the location, nearby hotels, proximity to airport, etc to help in deciding on location.
- Sometimes the best places to start are wedding sites that allow you to look at all wedding venues in a particular area. We recommend wedding sites like Wedding Wire or Atlanta Bridal that allow you to compare venues and their locations all in one site.
2.Do Your Homework- Before calling a venue try to do as much homework and research on the venue as possible so you know which questions to ask. Many times everything you need to know is on the website. For example, Glendalough Manor includes all the pricing, menus and even a tool for estimating a total cost of your wedding right on the website!
- Print pricing as you research each site and make a budget for each venue you are interested in.
- Note items included in the rental fee. Do they provide tables, chairs, linens, centerpieces, or dance floor? If they are not included in the rental fee make sure to add them to your budget.
- Don’t forget to look for hidden fees. These can add up and be the deciding factor in which venue is right for you. For example, is there cake cutting fee, chair setup fee, or wine corking fee?
- Also look at social media for the venue including their Facebook page, Twitter Account or blog to see extra pictures and testimonials you may not see on the website!
3. Call Venue For Details- Once you have done your research and have compiled a list of questions and prepared an estimated budget for each venue, call them to discuss any questions or concerns.
- Make sure to ask if your preferred date and time is available.
- It is difficult for many venues to state how much a “typical” wedding is at a venue so try not to ask this question. Each wedding is unique and the price range can vary based on your choices. If the venue answers this question it can mislead you in the cost of your event.
4. Schedule a Tour- Consider your budget and determine which venues are right for you.
- I suggest narrowing down the venues to your top three choices and call these venues to schedule a guided tour.
- Make sure to bring a notepad with you to take notes. There will be lots of information you receive at the tour and it can be hard to remember if you don’t write it down.
5. Review the Contract- At the end of the tour, even if you are still unsure, ask for a copy of the contract. That way you can take it home and review all the fine print at home. This may bring up questions or concerns you may not have previously thought of at your appointment.
Good luck in your search to find the perfect wedding venue and happy planning!