Venue is probably one of the first things on the wedding planning list, deciding on a venue is often a case of style preference and going with your gut. So you checked all the pictures and information on the venue’s website, it is time to visit the venue, however there is so many things going on in your head that you are not sure what to ask anymore .
This list of questions should help you not to forget about anything important. Hopefully after getting answers to these questions everything will be clear.
- Are we hiring a room or a whole venue with staff and catering?
- Is there an in-house wedding coordinator? If there is a coordinator, will they be there for the duration of the reception?
- Who will actually be there to run everything on the day?
- Is there a minimum number of guests that have to be booked?
- Are there any changes planned to the building before the wedding (renovations, painting etc)?
- What are your wedding packages and what is included?
- How flexible are your packages?
- What rooms are included? Bathrooms, bridal party rooms, lounge area, cocktail area, and coatroom?
- Is an outdoor area included for a cocktail reception?
- Is the room accessible for disabled guests?
- Is there a secure area to store the wedding gifts and bridal party’s personal items etc.?
- Are their different prices for holidays, weekdays etc.?
- Exactly what time do we/vendors have access?
- What does a typical layout of the room on the wedding day look like?
- Do you have photographs to show of other receptions?
- Where do guests park and how many spots are available?
- Is there valet?any costs?
DECOR & RENTALS
- Are we allowed to bring in our own decorations?
- Do you have an inventory of décor (lighting, candle holders, vases, etc.) we can borrow from?
- Can I move things around or do I have to leave everything as is?
- Can we use candles/confetti/sparklers/fireworks/animals/lawn games/bounce houses/food trucks/insert your own fun-but- potentially-dangerous liability here?
- Do you have signage or other aids to direct guests to my event?
- Exactly what crockery/linen/cutlery is provided as part of the package?
- What type of tables do you have (shape, size, top table), How many will they seat? Are there different options?
- Is any decor/stationery provided (menus, centrepieces, red carpet, flowers, cake stand)? Are there alternatives available?
- Can we hang things on the walls or from the ceiling?
- Are there decorating restrictions/will the decorating time be charged?
- What do they use for table settings?
FOOD & DRINKS
- Do you have an in-house caterer or a list of "preferred" caterers, or do I need to provide my own? Even if there is an in-house caterer, do I have the option of using an outside caterer instead?
- If I hire my own caterer, is there a kitchen available for them?
- Is there a food & beverage minimum?
- What's the tax and service charge?
- Can we do a food tasting before we finalize our menu selection? Does it cost extra?
- Are tables, linens, chairs, plates, silverware, and glassware provided, or will I have to rent them myself or get them through my caterer?
- Can I bring in a cake from an outside baker or do I have to use a cake made on site?
- Is there a cake-cutting fee? If I use a cake made on site is the fee waived?
- Can we bring our own wine, beer or champagne? What about hard liquor?
- Is there a corkage fee?
- Are you licensed to provide alcohol service?
- How is alcohol priced, and is there a bar minimum?
- Are there additional charges for bar staff?
- Will the meal be buffet or plated? If so how many courses?
- Can we choose to have a cocktail reception instead of a sit down dinner?
- Can we specify the meal time?
- Do you cater for special dietary requirements? Coeliacs? Vegetarians?
- Is there a late night food option, what time is it served?
- Who will sere the food, are we expected to provide staff? If so how many?
- How many days prior to the wedding date do you need to confirm catering numbers?
- Do they provide a cake table?
- Do you provide a cutting knife?
- Will the kitchen staff cut the cake and serve it?
- Can cake be served in place of dessert? Does this reduce the per head cost?
- Do you charge for unopened bottles after the reception? Can we return them?
- Do they have an area to serve champagne on arrival, can this be arranged?
- Is there a late bar? How late will the bar be open?
- What area is available for a dance floor? Will furniture need to be moved to accommodate?
- Can we bring in a band or DJ?
- When can the band set up?
- Can we hook an iPod or laptop up to your sound system?
- What do you have for a sound system? Speakers, microphones, etc.?
- When can the band or DJ set up?
- How many people does the dance floor accommodate?
- What time do you allow the music to play until?
- Are there sound restrictions outside?
- What is the total cost and what is required for a deposit?
- Do you offer payment plans?
- What it your cancellation policy?
- Do you provide security?
- Are there any additional costs we need to be aware of?
- What are the insurance requirements for you and your vendors?
- Does the venue have its own liability insurance coverage?
- Are there any photography or video restrictions?
- What suggestions do you have for locations to photograph?
- Is there a rain back-up plan (for outdoor locations)?
- Do you have outdoor covered areas such as canopies or tents in case of rain?
- Do you have indoor space available if we need to move people outside to inside?
- Do you have a generator for power outages?
- Can the venue accommodate the ceremony?
- Are the ceremony and reception held in the same room or separate rooms?
- If same room, what can be expected for set up and take down to switch over from the ceremony to the reception?
- Does the venue provide the seating for the ceremony?
- What is the cost to have both the ceremony and reception at the venue?
- Are we able to have a rehearsal at the venue and a rehearsal dinner?
- Can rose petals/confetti be thrown?
- Will the venue take care of all cleaning before and afterwards?
- Can you keep decorations to be collected the following day?
- Will you clean all public areas, bathrooms, gardens etc. prior to your event, is this included in the cost?
- What time are all guests required to leave?
- What is the policy for breakages or damages?