What comes first…

Photo by Red Ribbon Studio
Now that he has popped the question and you have spread the wonderful news; the confusion of what to do first creeps into mind. Well the first thing to do is set a wedding date, secondly decide if you feel you need a wedding coordinator or planner. Discuss with you planner the type of wedding you desire, if you have a theme in mind and your budget. If you have a specific place in mind that you absolutely must have your wedding and/or reception, your wedding date should be flexible. If you wedding date is not flexible you should begin visiting venues right away. The most popular venues book up quickly. Have your wedding coordinator set up appointments for you. A good wedding planner will have you visit venues based on your budget and style. This way you don’t waste alot of time visiting places that just don’t fit. Take lots of pictures (if the venue allows it), you can always refer to your pictures when making your final decision. Ask the catering or event manager if they have pictures of previous weddings. This will help you visualize if the venue is not set up for a wedding during your visit. If this is an outside venue be sure to ask what is the backup plan. Just in case of inclement weather always have a backup plan. Be sure to visit the back up plan. Make sure there is plenty of space. You don’t want people climbing over each other to move around.
Here are some key questions to ask a during your visit:

1. Are there enough outlets for audio/visual equipment? Is the power supply sufficient for DJ and/or Band?

2. Does the venue provide a microphone?

3. Will the room accommodate the number of people comfortably?

4. Are outside caters allowed?

5. Can you provide your own alcohol? If you do what is the serving charge per person?

6. If there are any renovations scheduled during your date, or will be finished before your date?

7. Do they provide linens and glassware? Can the linen colors be changed? What is the fee?

8. Is there handicapped facilities? Can a bride fit into stalls wearing a wedding dress?

9. Will there be any staff present on your date?

10.Does the venue supply janitorial service? If not how much time do you have to clean up? Is the time included in your reception time frame?

11. What is the hourly fee if your ceremony and/or reception runs late?

12. What is your deposit amount? Late fees? Is your deposit refundable?

13. Is there a private room or place the bride and bridesmaid can change?

14. Is there a kitchen available? Can food be prepared and/or stored there?

15. Do you have enough time to view the contract and make a decision?

These are some of the key questions to ask your venue manager. Always inspect the cleanliness of the site and the site grounds. If there is anything that concerns you be sure to mention it. Be sure to get a business card or email address and phone number, you may have a question after you have left the site. If you have a planner/coordinator have them review your contracts before you sign them if the service is offered. Remember this is a happy occasion and you shouldn’t stress. Have Fun!

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