Things to ask a venue before touring…
SKIP TO THE BOTTOM TO GET THE FREE 9 PAGE GUIDE: WHAT TO ASK VENUES
Yeah, it can be quickly overwhelming to think through all the different options, services to compare and narrow down so many great options.
Most people will tell you that the first step is to pick a date and a venue location. We are going to stop you right there though because being a venue we disagree. If you jump right into the search for a venue without a little prep work you are going to be quickly overwhelmed and stressed. Worse, you could end up stuck in a situation that you later realize is not what you truly want for your wedding experience had you known sooner. So that is where we are going to start in this blog, so that we can really help you out - no reason to tell you where the finish line is if you don't know were to even sign up for the race right?
Before you start clicking on those venue contact pages here are the steps you should take first to avoid unnecessary stress - and so you can feel confident in your choices.
In the end, we have a free guide for you - 9 pages filled with specific questions to ask before you visit venues, why you should ask them, and worksheets to keep you organized when doing it.
Step 1: Guest Count
Of course, no one is expecting you to know exactly who is coming to your wedding, and right now this should just be a working list that may change over the next couple of months. To make your wedding guest list there are a few areas to consider.
Step 2: Budget
Again, don’t think you have to have it all together right now. As you begin getting quotes you may see that you want or can adjust your budget. Having a general sense of the amount you can or will use for your celebration is very important. Without this conversation and decision, you can easily end up in a place spending more than you ever wanted to. I mean, have you seen all those TikToks of brides going over budget in every category? Yeah, let's not do that - what do you think? Let's take a breath, figure out this whole planning thing and then tackle it like a pro.
Specifically, you want to determine the amount you want to spend on your venue. The tricky part is that some venues are very basic whereas others include catering, linens, staff, sometimes bar packages, and more. The comparison of each one can be, well honestly - a pain. It can also mean a lot of research on your hands if you haven’t hired a professional planner that you trust to give you general costs and values.
The goal is that you don’t jump into a venue blindly and end up spending thousands more than you wanted, or if your budget is not a concern, that you don’t end up stuck with options/vendors you don’t want.
Step 3: Your Vision
This is probably your favorite part - ours too. I would bet you already have this part pretty much figured out. Hate to break it to you though, style-wise the guest table and wedding cake décor parts are not the most important right now. The overall vibes of your day though - now that’s what we want to focus on. Do you picture a certain time of year? Celebrating in the summer sun, or a cool winter day are drastically different. If you envision yourself having an outdoor wedding on a rooftop venue in the city or surrounded by trees, nature, and your pups it will help guide your search.
What you two want to focus on and should be thinking more of is the setting you want to welcome your guests into. Think of it as finding your dream house and then filling it with your décor. Find the venue that allows you the ambiance you’re seeking to not limit your vision as it comes together over the next few months.
Once you have narrowed down your overall style you will know if there is a certain time of year you want to say I do. Then you can narrow it down even more to fit your lifestyle.
Step 4: Set Your Priorities
This one! Ooh yes, you have to figure out what is on your dream list and matters to you. Of course, saying I do and getting married is the first thing so let’s not count that one.
Moving to the next - focus on what you will be spending money on and what is the most exciting to you. For some people it is florals, others it is photography or maybe yours is unique touches like a coffee truck. These top items are where you want to make sure you’re choosing a venue that 1) allows your vision 2) has room for what you have planned (especially if a mobile truck) and 3) is not going to steal part of the funds you were going to use for those special touches. The thing about it is, choosing your venue is the first investment most make for their day and it also is one of the biggest portions of your budget. Going over means you have to give room somewhere else - and trust us no matter how much you love your venue if it means 6 months later you realize you don’t get that dream honeymoon you will be bumming a bit and no venue wants that.
As a venue team, we can promise you that venues are excited about hosting your wedding, and we are thrilled to see the wedding vision and style you come up with! Even more than that - we are counting down the days for your wedding and we would never want you having second thoughts about choosing us.
Whether you are engaged or pre-engaged (we see you boo) having a realistic grasp on these will really help you as you take that first big step into planning. Half of it is fun, like exciting make your style board and dive down the deep hole that is instagram and TikTok inspiration to find the best vibes that match both of your styles. The other half… well not many people like budgeting and looking at money we know - but with the amount you are getting ready to invest whether it’s a tight budget or open ended you need to do this.
Alright so - have you done these four steps? If so then good for you, go grab your favorite beverage whether it’s sparkling water or ranch water and get ready for more of the fun stuff.
Questions to ask venues before you tour
Why is it important to talk to a venue before visiting? Great question friend! Here’s the skinny… There are a ton of options a TON of venues near you to choose from, visit and get lost in. When I got married almost 10 years ago from when I am writing this there were like 5 venues north of DFW in a two-hour radius. Now you can print that google map off, hang it on your wall throw a dart, and land on like 10 in one bubble.
That’s amazing great news for you BUT it does mean more prep work. I know, I know I said we were done with that after the first 4 steps but this is different I promise. The perk is you do not need to settle, you can find your style, your budget and your priorities to have the day you deserve. The down side is that it can be super confusing to compare all these options and if you aren’t careful a total time suck.
Most cultures only book 1 venue for their wedding, a few book 2 (especially if you are having a henna ceremony, rehearsal dinner, or post-wedding brunch), and a small number book 3 or more.
What that means is you have to take that list of 100+ venues in your area down to 1 (for the sake of this let’s just pretend you are looking for 1 specific venue right now). You are about to spend so much time researching what venue is gorgeous in fall, which venue has a great reputation, where will my guests stay… Then you’re going to spend days on days visiting these places.
Once we had a couple visit us to see everything, and they were obviously burnt out. They couldn’t think of a question to ask, they seemed overwhelmed and kept confusing all the places they had looked at - when we asked they told us they had visited over 60 wedding venues. 60 VENUES! Could you imagine the time it took to set up those visits, work around work, social calendars and then to drive to each spot? No wonder they were overwhelmed, and if you take anything from this post please know you do not need to do that to find your dream venue.
If you are visiting 10 venues you have not asked the right questions and are doing too much. In fact, if you ask our venue manager “how many venues should I tour?” she will tell you if you have seen more than 5 you have seen too many.
The difference is that we know this industry, we know what to look for, what to ask, and how to narrow in on what is or is not a good fit. By the time a couple is finished touring with us we can tell you if you are a good fit for us, and if not 3 venues that would be perfect. Now, wouldn’t it be nice if you could do that too?
Imagine all the conversations you would not have to have with venues you really are not into!
So that’s our goal here - we are going to take you from newly engaged and lost in a sea of wedding planning to feel prepared, confident, and most importantly EXCITED about your venue.
We’ve organized all of the information for you on an easy to ready PDF that is completely FREE to you. Then, because we are extra and super organized, we also made you a worksheet to keep it all organized, typed up email templates for you to send inquiries to wedding venues and a guide on what to ask when you’re visiting. We’ll talk more about that in a different blog though.
No gimmicks, no weird sales email from us just helpful tools to get you in the venue you deserve and is waiting for you.
One last thing before you jump into the guide and workbook though - if you are lucky most of these venues will have the bulk of this information on their website. If you are going to take the time to reach out to them, that means you would visit that venue right? Well, I promise you taking time to look over their website for this information will be a lot faster than 50 back and forth emails, and definitely faster than going to visit a venue that is a 30-minute drive just to realize whoops, they don’t check one of our boxes.
Check out their websites, fill in the worksheet, and then use the templates to reach out to them to get the rest of those answers!
Ready for that guide? CLICK HERE AND ENTER YOUR INFO
If you have any issues with the link shoot us an email and we will get it right over to you!
No sales pitch, just 4 helpful emails each with a guide, templates or worksheets to use.
We love to help others & being a part of your big day! We believe in dreaming big, smiling often & southern charm.
10340 Jackson Rd. Krum, TX 76249