So you just got engaged or decided to plan a major event…congratulations!  The first place to start is to find a venue.  Based on your style of event, budget and guest list there are hundreds of great venues to choose from but you need to be careful.

Every venue has a different structure on how they charge.  Also, a venue may have an on-site caterer, a list of caterers you must use, a preferred list but no requirement or use any caterer.  The catering adds another layer of fees that you need to take into account.  Here are a few of the variables:

  • There is a flat rental fee based on the date and hours needed. Usually in this situation either you can use any caterer or the venue has a list of caterers that you choose from.
  • There is no rental fee but a food and beverage minimum required by the on the on-site caterer.
  • In addition to the catering variables, many venues will offer tables and chairs included or you have to rent them.
  • Some venues charge for setup/cleanup fees and rehearsal fees.
  • Some venues have a limited amount of time for the ceremony and reception with an addition hour or two for the bridal party to arrive to get ready or take photos and charge additional to add more time. Other venues allow you access to the site all day (or even the day prior) to get ready and decorate.

Because there are so many variables in selecting the best venue for your event, many clients choose to have us research the appropriate venues and attend venue tours to ask the most appropriate questions.  We can help narrow down the variables to make the best choice so there are no big surprises that will change the budget later on.