Choosing the right venue for your wedding day is one of the most important decisions you can make when planning your big day but it is the kind of choice which can easily overwhelm even the most organised of brides to be. It's also the one question which most couples will spend their time answering as soon as they get engaged along with â€˜when'. The â€˜where' of the wedding is so vital; get it right and you could set the entire day off just perfectly. But how to choose? Luckily, we have some top tips for you to make selecting that ideal venue as easy as can be:
It is very easy to get caught up in the romantic location of a venue or the effusiveness of a venue's wedding planner without actually stopping to consider whether the venue will be right for you and the type of wedding you want to have. You need to have a basic idea of the theme of the wedding, the rough number of people you want to invite and what time of year you want to have the wedding before you even step foot inside one of the wedding reception venues in London or elsewhere for that matter. Although it's near impossible to have a finalised idea of numbers of guests, you should have a basic count so you can make sure that the venue can accommodate your wedding party.
You also need to think about the time of year you are having the wedding; most venues will want to showcase photos of their venue looking its best and this usually means summer weddings. This is not ideal if you are planning to have a winter wedding and need to know whether the beautiful grassed lawn outside will stay looking that picturesque or whether it will be a muddy mulch of fallen leaves. These are the types of questions you need to ask along with contingency plans if the weather is bad or overly warm and so on.
Additionally, take a minute to think about the needs of the guests you will be inviting. Do you require wheelchair access or space for a pushchair or two if you have guests with young children? Just taking the time to think these things through and ask the venue whether they can assist can save you all kinds of hassle as your big day draws closer.
Visit at the right time
Although typically most weddings are held on a Saturday, and most couples view wedding venues on the weekend, make sure you visit at the time your wedding will actually take place. You might need to request this, and it might be that you come back for a second viewing at the right time but it is still important to do so. If you viewed a venue the first time at 10am, and your reception won't be held until 5pm then the whole way the room looks and feels could be dramatically different. Natural light is always best in the morning so how will the room look come 5pm when it's artificially lit?
Check what your package includes
Although it seems obvious to check what is included with your wedding venue package you would be surprised at the number of small details which are overlooked by couples who are excited and keen to sign on the dotted line and secure their chosen wedding venue. In particular you need to find out whether the package offered is â€˜full service' or not. Full service means everything from tables and chairs to linens is included as well as food. Some venues will offer part-service and some will offer none at all meaning all you receive is the empty space and it is up to you to fill it. It is vital that you check this before you book as you may find that you blow your whole venue budget on just the space and have nothing left to fill it with. If you have opted for a venue which only offers the space then do speak with the venue to see whether they can recommend local suppliers; sometimes they can secure a discount for you.
Know your wedding style
A converted barn might appear to be the ideal venue but if you wanted a traditional white wedding and not a rustic theme then you might find that when it comes to the finer details things begin to chafe. It might be advisable to have a rough idea of the type of wedding you want before you visit venues so that you can size up whether the barn works better or whether you should stick to the ballroom. You may think that choosing the style of your wedding comes later but it can actually determine a great deal.
Don't be afraid to ask questions
Although you may be hesitant about appearing annoying to the people hosting the wedding of your dreams remember that at the end of the day you are paying them to provide a service and that means you can ask as many questions as you want. Don't hold back as this will only hinder you later on. Questions such as whether a room is going to be redecorated between now and the time of your wedding, whether yours will be the only wedding held that day and even who will be available on the day to help you, are all important and valid questions. It might not be advisable to call the venue every single time something occurs to you, so instead make a list of the questions as you think them and then speak directly to the person in charge, whoever that might be. Weddings aren't cheap and your venue will almost certainly be taking up the largest percentage of your wedding budget so it needs to be perfect for you.
Contributed by: http://www.grandballroomatthemontcalm.co.uk/