Insider Tips from a Wedding Venue Manager
There are a million and one wedding tips on Pinterest to assist you in your journey of selecting the perfect wedding venue. This is great.. The venue is one of the most important elements of the process, so it’s important to be educated. Along with running The Nouveau Wedding, I am also a venue manager. When I sit down with couples who don’t have a wedding planner, I make sure to communicate every single detail that I feel they need to know, because chances are, they aren’t quite sure what to ask. I also always encourage them to make a list of questions to take with them to every venue appointment. Here are a few questions that I rarely get asked, but feel should be included on every bride’s questionnaire.
1. Who will be my point of contact and will they be present on the day of my wedding? Ideally, you will only have one point of contact and they will be present throughout the entire process. If the venue does not require the venue manager to be present for your wedding, ask to meet the person who will be in charge on the day of. You’ll want to build a relationship with whoever is in charge of taking care of you and your guests.
2. What is your cancellation policy if we change the date? This is especially important if you are military or have an engagement period longer than 1.5 years
3. Can we drop off decor a few days prior to the wedding? Hey… the worst they can say is “no”.
4. Can we come by when the room is set up for a wedding to gather ideas? Chances are, they are more than willing to let you, but they’re probably not going to offer the opportunity if you don’t ask. Side Note: If you do visit the venue on the day of someone else’s wedding, trust us when we say “the venue manager will NOT have time to stop and answer questions.” Don’t take it personally.
5. Will my vendors get an opportunity to view the space before the day of the wedding? If you have a wedding planner, this is not really that important, but we highly recommend that your photographer have a chance to check the lighting before the wedding day.
Here are a few additional tips to be aware of when working with wedding venues.
If you are willing to have your wedding on a weekday, discounts will most likely be granted.
If you plan on doing a “first look” before the ceremony, do a walk through with your photographer to choose the location ahead of time.
Ask the venue manager’s opinion of your floor plan. They’ve seen countless weddings in that particular space and they are your best resource for what works and what doesn’t.
When venues recommend vendors, ask them what they are making their recommendations based on.
If you have an extensive floral design, ask permission for the florist to come in a day prior to build the foundation and drop off supplies.
Make sure to have a conversation about what happens to the flowers if you don’t take them with you.