Dear Bride: 3 Things To Do Before You Pick Your Venue

January 16, 2018

Oh, hey, bride to be! EEK! I know that still must be SO exciting for you to hear! YOU’RE ENGAGED! YOU’RE A BRIDE TO BE! The ring on your left hand is still the best thing EVER and will forever be the best thing EVER, and now you get to start planning that dream wedding of yours! (Insert happy dance- go ahead, don’t be shy! I’m doing a happy dance with you!)

Okay, so what now? So you’ve probably started looking up to-do lists, went over to Pinterest to touch up your wedding board (because we all know you started that thing years ago), and maybe, just maybe started looking at potential venues! Well, today, I’m here to help you with your venue search! I’m here to tell you 4 things you NEED to do before you pick your venue- actually even before that… 4 things you NEED to do before you even start doing research on venues.

Picking your wedding vendors can be a daunting task! I hear ya. Been there, done that! There are SO many decisions to make and you want to make sure you pick your perfect vendors! I totally understand. I’m here to help! If you take these steps before you start your venue venture, you will then be SO confident with your venue decision and not feel overwhelmed or stressed during the process of it all!

ALRIGHT, let’s get started:

  1. Budget
    • Yep. The “B” word. That dreaded, no good, no one wants to ever talk about, word. Sadly, this “word” is what kinda (by kinda, I mean completely) dictates what you can and cannot have at your wedding though.
    • Once you figure out your budget (still feel gross typing it out), you then need to figure out your “Top Three”. Now, what is the Top Three, you ask? Well, it’s what you consider the most important aspects of your wedding day. For example, it could be Photography (good answer), Venue, and Food! I’ll let you think about that for a second.
    • Once you do that, you figure out how much you want to spend on each vendor- more money goes toward you “Top Three”!
  2. Guest List
    • Your wedding is going to be filled with the people who you love most in this world! Now, we have to count just how many people that is. (The budget falls into this category too!)
    • Your venue needs to be able to fit the amount of people you plan on inviting to your wedding! If you plan on having a big wedding, not all venues can do that, and some venues double in cost for more people (rentals, tents, catering, etc.)!
    • Before contacting or visiting venues, do yourself a favor and jot down a tentative guest list!
    • FYI- Your parents are going to have a list of their own as well… make sure to ask them what guests they want at the wedding as well!
  3. Wedding Date
    • The wedding date. Before you visit venues, you need to have a discussion with your fiance and your family about what dates you can and cannot do!
      • Think about jobs, travel, sports, events that happen in the city of your potential venues, and everything in between!
    • Depending on the venue, some venues cost more or less during certain times of the year! Inquire about that!
  4. Wedding Location
    • Depending on the location, venues will cost more or less due to this one factor alone!
    • Also, think about lodging for your guests! Will this location be able to host all your guests in hotel rooms?
      • Consider airports as well for your out of town guests! Is there a near by airport?
    • This is also something I didn’t think about, but if you love to party and want the night to never end, look up areas that will keep the party going even after the wedding! This is not an important factor, but in Lexington, VA where I got married, this was not an option haha! (Unless you wanted to party with the cows in a field!)

******* BONUS TIP *********

If you absolutely love photography and you KNOW that this is a huge aspect of your wedding, check in with your favorite photographers to see what dates they have available!! This year more then any other year, I have had to turn down 15 plus brides because their dates fell on the same date as another bride’s date. It doesn’t hurt to send them an email!


The whole wedding planning process can seem like a lot because it kinda is, not going to lie! Take your time though, you truly are in no rush! Ask questions, ask for help when you need it, and always remember to take a deep breath! You got this rock star!!


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