FINDING THE PERFECT MATCH…(After your fiancé of course!)

Finding a venue is usually the first thing that many brides do.  But how can you find a venue that you can afford, fits into your vision, and is available?  Here are some tips to help you find your perfect match.

  • First things first: Create a budget

Before you start looking at venues, sit down and prepare your budget.  You need to make sure that you know exactly how much you can spend on your venue, so you’re not pinching pennies later in your planning.  In doing this initially, you will still have funds to buy your dress, pay your DJ and feed your guests.  This will also narrow down your venue search to those that actually fit into your budget.

  • “The biggest thing I’ve learned is location.” – Roy Halladay

Consider the location of the venue.  If your friends and family are local, consider a venue close to your guests’ homes, or with ample transportation options available. You want to ensure that everyone in attendance is leaving your event safely.  If most of your guests are not local, consider what accommodations are nearby, and if they offer shuttle services to get guests to and from the venue and hotel

  • Numbers, numbers, numbers!

What is the venue’s capacity?  You must consider the number of people you are expecting and how that number will fit into the space you are booking.  If you are expecting 300 guests, make sure that number will comply with the venue’s occupancy code.  Also, consider how easy it will be to adjust those numbers with the venue after your guests RSVP.

  • The room shuffle!

Does the venue you’re considering fit your needs for space?  If you are having the ceremony in one room or location on the property, is there another space that can already be prepped for your reception?  If not, how quickly can they move guests out for a cocktail hour and then flip the room to be ready for your reception?  Most venues have multiple spaces that can be used or have policies for quickly and easily preparing spaces.  If it’s open air, what’s the backup plan for rain?

  • Parking

Finally, consider parking.  The best possible option is to find a venue with ample on-site or close-by parking.  If not, does the venue offer valet parking?  Remember, you can also provide valet parking by bringing in your own valets to your event if the available parking is not close by.