Earlier, we covered conversations you must have with your photographer before your big day. If you haven’t read that, you can find it here: http://www.allaboutnaijaweddings.com/conversations-you-must-have-with-your-photographer-before-the-big-day/
Today, we’ll cover the conversations you must have with your venue vendor before your big day!
1. Are you licensed for civil ceremonies?
This has to be your first question if you’re planning to marry at your venue. Then, ask to see the ceremony room or rooms, and make sure you feel comfortable there.
2. What does your all-inclusive package include?
These can vary greatly from venue to venue, so it’s very important that you ask for a detailed breakdown. Basic packages can simply be the room rental, wedding breakfast and some sparkling wine for the toasts, while the other end of the scale could be a package with exclusive use of the venue for the whole day, plus all the pretty trimmings.
3. Can we bring in our own suppliers?
Picking an “empty” venue and then arranging your own catering, drinks, flowers and so on, can be a good way to save money — but check to see if they will be charging you a corkage fee. Alternatively, ask the venue if they have suppliers who they regularly work with, who may be able to offer discounts.
4. Will we have exclusive use of the venue?
Most brides want to feel like the center of attention on the Big Day, so check that your venue won’t be hosting other weddings at the same time as yours. If this is unavoidable, ask to keep the bar, toilets and evening reception rooms separate. Also ensure there is enough staff to cater for both parties.
5. How many guests can we invite to the day?
Check the venue’s minimum and maximum numbers early on so you know they can accommodate your dream day. Similarly, is the venue going to be suitable for all your guests, young and old? Is there a disabled entrance? Is there a space where you could create a play area for the little ones?
6. How do we pay?
Most big locations will have a payment plan, so you can pay in installments each month. A top tip would be to pay big amounts on a credit card, so you have some protection should the worst happen. This is also a good time to get your wedding insurance package in place.
7. Can we test the menu?
Food plays a big part in the big day, so definitely try before you buy! Check the options for gluten-frees and vegetarians, too. If your budget is tight, will the catering team be willing to work with you to create a menu that’s just right?
8. Are there any restrictions?
Candles and fireworks are often not allowed at old buildings. Check your venue’s policy on this before placing deposits with any other suppliers.
9. Do you have an in-house wedding co-ordinator?
A dedicated stylist or planner can really alleviate pressure from you on the day, so ask if your venue has one for you to work with. Be forthcoming with your ideas, and ask about their recommended suppliers — they should have a list of companies that they regularly use for weddings, from hairdressers to entertainers.
10. Can my guests stay here?
Ask whether your venue’s rental price includes the cost of the bedrooms. If not, would they consider a discounted rate for friends and family? The bridal suite, however, is usually included.