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I somewhat jumped ahead in my last post about building a guest list! Sorry!!! Guest lists will totally come after you have yourself a venue and a wedding date! You will probably already have a list in your head of who you want to invite though…I know I did!
So….you’re engaged!?!? What do you do now?!?!
I suggest taking a bit to enjoy your engagement. Don’t jump head first into planning, unless you’re in a rush! Take your time, talk about what you what on your wedding day, how you picture that day, and what you look most forward to going into a marriage.
When you start planning, you need to toss around a few dates and get a general idea of when you want to get married. You don’t have a date until you have a venue booked…I don’t care what anyone says, it’s just not realistic.
You’ll need to find a venue, and there are tons of different venues and packages available to you. You might want to dial in a budget before you start looking, but we really didn’t. It was an eye opener for us because some of the venues we requested quotes from where outrageously priced. We had no idea going into this, how much money we would potentially be spending. It’s not cheap to get married folks!!
We probably took about two months to find the perfect venue. When we found it, we knew it was ours! We took a tour, met with the coordinator and went through all our questions and concerns. We placed the deposit, and finally had ourselves a wedding date!
My advice when booking your venue is to ask questions…none of your questions are stupid! You’re spending tons of money, and this is a very important day, so you should feel at ease with the venue you choose.
This is when all the fun begins! We wanted a venue that was pretty much all-inclusive, and that’s what we got. All we had to do was hire a florist, DJ, photographer, and get ourselves a cake. We went off the venues preferred vendor list, and it was pretty easy to select who we wanted to work with.
I urge you to take your time, and don’t rush when you’re selecting your vendors! It needs to feel right when you meet, or they aren’t the ones!
Tips For Booking Your Venue
- Be open-minded and flexible. Sometimes places aren’t what they seem!
- Ask questions! No questions are stupid! Ask about everything that might be on your mind!
- Ask about the different service fees that will be charged, if any. Sometimes these fees are hidden, and you’ll find out after you’ve already been locked into a contract.
- Make sure you get a walk through of the whole venue, and have them take you through a mock timeline of wedding day events. It sounds silly, but you want your day to run smooth and you want to be prepared.
- Ask about food and alcohol. Sometimes alcohol isn’t included in the package prices, so ask what types of packages they offer.
- Venue options! Make sure you leave knowing what your food options are. You don’t need to make a decision then, but what if you sign a contract and they only make food you don’t eat?!?
- Ask about any discounts they may offer. Military, veteran, ect… We are getting married at a winery, and they offer a discount for wine club members, so we joined!
- Make sure you know the rules of the venue before leaving. Sometimes venues don’t allow sparklers, bubbles, noise makers, or real flowers for the flower girl to toss.
- Last but not least, ask what they will do for you. For example, will they set up your chairs? Will they set up your reception? You really want to get a feel of what they can do for you, and how they can help make your wedding day even more special!
Happy searching, and happy planning! After your venue is booked, everything else pretty much falls into place!!