12 Must Ask Questions

Photo by: Marissa Wiley Photo

Are you venue shopping? Here are some MUST ASK QUESTIONS as you tour venues.

  1. What is the capacity of the venue?  Now, this may be an obvious question, but you need to know EXACTLY how many people can fit in an area in ceremony style as well as the reception style. Capacity is also important to consider if you plan to have a band or DJ, buffet lines, a dance floor, photobooths, etc. This is a time when you have to make sure all the items and details you want at your wedding are going to fit nicely in one space.
  1. If there are outside options, when do they require the “rain call”, or a final decision to go outside or move inside? It is always hard to predict the weather, even 1-2 days out from your special day. Therefore, you want to make sure the venue gives you a flexible time to adjust if you need to, and REMEMBER to ask if there are any extra fees with a weather change!
  1. Are there fees to bring in your own catering or desserts? This all depends on the venue you choose. Some allow you to pick off their preferred list; some allow you to bring your own but add a fee; and some allow you pick whomever. This is very important to ask because the food and beverage bills are at the top of your wedding expenses!
  1. Clarify when you get access to the venue. And, be sure to clarify when access to the venue ends. This is important to note for your vendors so they all know when they can get in and start decorating. The end of the night/event access also lets you plan out when you should end the music to have enough time to clean up, pack up, and move your guests on their way. We recommend a minimum of one hour of clean up time.In thinking about the night/event wrap up, be sure to clarify if all vendors need to have everything removed at the end of the event. You might have flowers, arches, etc. that are large items that vendors want to leave for the night and return later to pick up.
  1. Ask to see layout examples for your numbers. If you are like us, we love to see visuals! This allows you to see the venue set up and the walking flow. It also gives you an idea of what the space will look like on your day and helps you visualize how big your dance floor is and where tables will be.
  1. Does your rental include rehearsal time? Do they give you access the day before your wedding? Or, do they give you extra time the morning before? This is critical for planning, practicing, walk throughs, and keeping jitters calm.
  2. Ask if guests can leave their car overnight at the venue.This is always nice to have for guests who are responsible, and it offers guests the opportunity to enjoy a few drinks, uber/taxi home safely, and then come back the next day to grab their car
  1. Ask what all the venue provides for the set up, for example, chairs, tables, stage, linens, podium, extra tables, etc. In your rental, you want to know exactly what you are getting. Do you get chairs for the ceremony and the reception? What kind of tables do you get? Rectangles or rounds, and how many of each? Do you rent linens through the venue? Or, do you rent those through your catering vendor? Do they offer any other decor items, like walls, arches, tables, signs, and you name it? 
  2. What is the decor policy? Does the venue have restrictions on open flames/candles, exit favors (streamers, sparklers, confetti, etc.),or guest favors? 
  3. Ask about different price points for days of the week or time of the year. Pricing may vary depending on the day of the week and even the time of year! This can help in the budgeting and planning process
  1. Do you have required costs like Security, Cleaning etc.? Extra fees add up quickly. Make sure you ask extra questions like these to see what is included and what will be additional. 
  1. Is liability insurance required for the space? Many spaces require this. You either can reach out to your homeowner’s insurance, or Wedsafe is another outsource we have used. Are there noise restrictions? What time does the music need to be off at.