Seven Things You Should Do During A Wedding Venue Site Tour
There’s no doubt about it: Searching for a wedding venue is great fun, but picking the option that works best for you can be an intimidating process. Site tours are one of the most important steps you can take toward booking a venue, and it’s important to come to a tour with a goal in mind. Here are a few easy steps you can take during your site tour to help you find the picture perfect venue for your big day!
Get an Accurate Quote
Rather than going off the venue’s minimum cost, get an accurate quote that factors in the venue’s full breakdown of costs. These quotes consider a multitude of factors, including things like your target guest count, the time of the year you’re hosting the event, and more. A detailed quote helps you better understand how a venue fits into your budget (and how much bang you’d be getting for your buck). Spot Estimates can be a great way to ballpark the cost of a venue before you even set foot on site!
Determine the Venue’s True Capacity
If the venue has only given you a general capacity number, find out whether that number is based on sitting or standing room. Most venues provide a seemingly straightforward headcount, but sometimes the number of guests a venue can accommodate varies depending on if you hope to host a standing cocktail-style affair or a seated soiree.
Explore Your Ceremony Options
Hope to have your ceremony and reception on the same site? Find out if the venue can accommodate this. If they have a ceremony site available, determine if you’d need to pay an additional fee for the site, how close the site is to the reception space, the site’s capacity, and other important details that will give you an idea of how the two spaces could work together and fit into your greater vision of the big day.
Talk Details Around Alcohol and Catering
Identify any restrictions prospective venues have around alcohol and catering. Does the venue have a liquor license or do they only offer beer and wine? Is the venue BYOB or do they offer robust bar packages? You’ll want to pinpoint any constraints around catering as well. Does the venue require you to work with a specific vendor? If the venue provides their own catering services, what menu options do you have? Understanding these rules and restrictions can help you create a menu that works best for you and your guests.
Ask About Coordination Services
Find out if coordination services are included in the venue cost. Having a wedding planner or coordinator built into the cost of your venue can be a huge plus for couples who want to kick back and enjoy their big day without worrying about the little details. On the other hand, if you like playing host and want to keep costs to a minimum, searching for a simple venue that doesn’t include coordination services can be a great way to save money.
Get a Peek Behind the Scenes
While it’s easy to be dazzled by a venue’s beautiful locations, site visits present the perfect opportunity to see what the back-of-house facilities are like. Is there extra storage for anything that needs to be put away during the event? Are the bathrooms clean? Is the parking convenient? Can the venue’s kitchen accommodate your catering needs? These questions are important because, after all, the back-of-house facilities and the people in them are what make your wedding day run smoothly.
Visit at the Right Time
Tour your prospective venues around the same season and time that you’d like to host your wedding. Dreaming of a fresh spring wedding with a morning ceremony? Schedule your site visit on an early spring morning to get an accurate look at the place. Venues take on new character depending on the time of year, and even the time of day, that you’re get married.
These are only some of the many factors to consider when searching for that picture perfect venue. Happy planning!