One of the first things most couples
have to decide get interrogated about after getting engaged is where they’re going to get married. The conversation usually goes, “Ooooo! Let me see your ring? When’s the big day? Where are you getting hitched?” AS IF YOU KNOW. Please. And as if finding a venue were that easy.
With Bryan and me, this question plagued us for the first two years of our three-year engagement. First, we wanted a beach wedding. However, when it came to venues, none of the options fit with us. We couldn’t afford any of the all-inclusive places, and renting a house at the beach left us with more logistical problems than we thought we could handle. So we turned our eyes elsewhere, toward places that were closer to us where we could handle more of the legwork if we needed to.
For us, one of the biggest questions in picking a wedding venue was legwork. We were up for managing some, but we weren’t up for managing everything (i.e., turning a vacation rental into a wedding venue for a weekend). But the issues in finding wedding venues vary for everyone, and include questions like:
- How much does it cost?
- Why is it so fucking hard to find out what it costs?
- Are there hidden fees? (Oh, you are required to have valet for this urban venue and that starts at $4K? Um. Well then.)
- Can you bring your own booze?
- Is their booze affordable?
- Is there a required list of caterers?
- Do you care?
- Is it pretty/can you pretty it up?
- Can it fit all your guests?
- How many guests are you going to have anyway?
- Would you need to have a rain plan?
- What non-traditional spaces should you be looking at?
- Why dear god do you not know someone with a perfect house/piece of land that would double as a free wedding venue?
And on, and on. So today we’re tackling what to look for in wedding venues. If you’re in the middle of planning, what are your questions? What do you need help on? If you’ve figured out your own venue issues (or gotten hitched) please stick around to give advice. And, as always, if there are questions that are not easily answered, we’ll throw it to a wedding pro and get you an advice column.
also. If you’ve gotten married and liked your venue, please help us help you pay it forward: submit your venue to the APW Venue Directory! There are way too few venues in there, and people really really want more.
Photo by Vivian Chen (APW Sponsor)