We are all a bit cooped up indoors right now and going places sounds quite nice… especially if you are in the beginning stages of wedding planning and looking to secure a location and date. 2021 is going to be busy with folks who have chosen to postpone but also for freshly engaged couples. With that in mind, we encourage couples to proceed forward in planning to venue hunt in even the most untraditional ways.
First off… We advise that you consider the following before you start buckling down on your venue search:
- What time of year/month are you seeking?
- How many guests are you trying to accommodate?
- Are you seeking indoors? Outdoors? A combo of the two?
- What vibe are you going for? Modern? Rustic? Sophisticated? Casual? Etc…
- Be ready to weigh pricing. Keep in mind that some venues might be more costly but have more inclusions that would actually be the more economical choice than needing to source everything. Pssst, this is where gifted private properties can suddenly become far more expensive than an “official” venue.
Alright, you have the above determined *virtual high five!* Here are some helpful ways to get creative in seeking venues (in addition to poking through websites):
1. Vendor recommendations
Love a photographer, florist, caterer, etc., and have no doubt that you want them on your vendor team? Ask them for their professional opinion and recommendation on some dreamy venues. Plus: they will likely have experience in those spaces already and know some of the fine print of how to best work in them.
Start off by doing some serious undercover insta-stalking work by studying your favorite vendor’s instagram accounts. Many of them have checked into their geo-locations when they post their gorgeous photos. You can then discover some pretty rad venues that may have been initially glossed over.
3. Video chats
Once you have a few venues narrowed down, reach out and ask if they would do a virtual tour with you. Some venues already have these on their websites, but this way you can video conference with them to learn more about their spaces. It can be much more personable than an email sometimes. Be ready to take notes or ask if they have a condensed proposal with all amenities listed.
3. Drive by
I urge you to be careful with this and ensure that you are following Executive Order by your state. If you aren’t supposed to leave your home – don’t! If you still have some loose freedom, load up in the car and simply drive by your prospective venue. Please don’t exit the car to maintain everyone’s health and safety, but sometimes simply driving by to scout the area can be helpful to visualize your day.
10 questions to ask before you book your venue
- How many guests does your space accommodate?
- What happens in the event of an uncomfortable weather condition (heat, rain, wind, etc.)?
- Are there areas on the property that the couple + wedding party can get ready?
- What time(s) and date(s) do we have access to the space?
- Do you accommodate a rehearsal? What are the restrictions to this?
- Is there a preferred vendor list that you are restricted to hire?
- What is their sound ordinance?
- What are some inclusions that the venue includes? (example would be tables + chairs)
- What is the parking situation?
- Does the ceremony space need to be flipped into the reception space?
We totally understand that this is unconventional for seeking out such a special place in your love story, but we hope that you have a blast with it nevertheless.