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Leaves & Fishes, Wedding Venue Hunter Valley
Leaves & Fishes, Cavanagh Photography

How to Find The Perfect Wedding Venue

Tips & Hints

As one of your biggest wedding planning decisions, working out how to find the perfect venue can be overwhelming. But we’re here to help!

From starting your search to narrowing down your must-see spots, here’s a few ideas of what to consider before, during and after each venue viewing to make it easier to find the perfect location partner.

Here’s how to find the perfect wedding venue for you.

Before You Begin

  • Make a rough draft of your guest numbers to easily rule options in and out based on a venue’s maximum capacity.
  • Decide on a location. Is it easy to arrive to for majority of your guests? Does it have enough accommodation for those travelling?
  • Decide on a time of year you’d love to get married. It’s a good idea to keep your idea of dates open at this stage as to not rule out an otherwise perfect venue because it’s not available on your one possible date.
  • Discuss budgets with anyone that will be funding the day. Have an idea of your max-spend and compare this with pricing from a range of venues to see if what you want is feasible within your budget.
  • Also consider items that are a must-have for you and be sure to consider these when comparing prices. Some venues may seem initially more expensive but if you consider features that may be included (like accommodation, catering, set-up time etc) that are on your ‘want’ list then they may prove to be a better value option.

While Viewing The Venue

To Do

  • Take it in. Your initial gut feeling is worth a lot and taking a moment to take in the space and it’s vibe is important before you become bogged down on the details.
  • Take your phone. Ask the owner if it’s ok to take some photos of the space. This will be super handy should you end up booking to remind you of the different spaces you can use and style to suit.
  • If you’re planning on staying in the one spot note down the distances between the ceremony area, reception and any spots you could use for photography.
  • Consider where you would set up for a band and ensure there are some power points readily available.
  • Planning on bringing in external suppliers? Make a sketch of the floor plan or ask your venue’s owner for one to pass along to caterers, stylists and musicians.
  • Consider parking and if you’re planning on a bus, double check access.

To ask

  • Is there a wet weather option?
  • Is there anything else we will need to budget for? (This is a great way of getting an accurate list of things that may not be included in their listed price).
  • Is there anywhere for bridal party touchups?
  • Are you open to external caterers and alcohol suppliers? If so, are there any facilities on-site for them. Is there any extra charge to use these facilities.
  • Is there parking available?
  • Can buses have access?
  • Are taxis or ubers readily available?
  • When do you have access to the venue? Only the day of, or the day before also? (If no early access is available is there available storage)
  • What can be moved and what needs to stay put?
  • What is the music and guest curfew?
  • What time does pickup need to occur?
  • Will a venue representative be available on the day? What is the process if something goes wrong?
  • Are candles allowed?
  • Is confetti allowed?
  • Does the venue have any accommodation recommendations?
  • Is the venue handicap accessible (if you have any guests with mobility needs)
  • Who’s responsibility is garbage collection and cleanup? If it can be disposed of onsite where are the bins and or recycling located.

After the Viewing

  • Get in touch with the venue and thank them for their time. Ask any questions you may have forgotten.
  • Once you’ve made your decision let the venues know either way so that they can free up spots for other couples.
  • Look into your chosen venue and consider the logistics of your day from start to finish. What the requirements could be for your transport, guests transport and accommodation and start the ball rolling with placing holds on accommodation or a bus or sharing a save the date with your guests to encourage them to plan ahead, especially if you’re booking a busy weekend.
  • Look into the sunrise and sunset times for your location and date.
  • Research the average rainfall on your chosen date and keep some budget aside if you may need it for wet weather marquees. (BoM’s Average Rainfall makes this easy!)
  • Start searching for your favourite vendors and book them in once you have your date.

Ready to find your perfect wedding venue?

Now that you’re equiped with all of the items to ask and consider, start step one and explore our top wedding venues.

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