When we began looking for locations around the area, we had a few things we wanted for our big day.
- Option for an outdoor ceremony/reception - 100% outside if we could
- Close to lodging for out-of-town guests
- A location within our budget (20-30% of the total budget)
- An on-site coordinator we could easily contact - potential day of coordinator?
Good Afternoon X,
My fiancee and I just recently got engaged and we came across your location on X. We are looking to have our ceremony/reception/both at your location and would love to meet with your coordinator to take a tour and answer a few questions we have. Please let us know what times you are available to meet. We look forward to meeting with you to discuss this further.
I had a lot of positive responses - some I called using similar wording - and was able to get appointments set up fairly quickly. If the vendor didn't send any information (or we could not find it on their site), we armed ourselves with questions we wanted to ask regarding our big day. Here are some of the questions we asked to get you started:
- Do you have X date available (or any of this Month/Year)?
- What is your maximum capacity?
- Do you allow an onsite ceremony? If so, is there an additional fee for this?
- Is there a location for the wedding party to get ready?
- Is there an outline of the costs/fees outlined regarding the rental of the facility?
- What is included in your rental fee?
- Do you provide chairs/tables/linens/silverware/decorations/chair covers/lighting ?
- Do you have a preferred vendor list - or a specific caterer we have to use?
- What is your alcohol policy? Do we need to obtain a license to serve alcohol?
- Is there an onsite coordinator we will be working with? Are they included in the fees?
- What are the restrictions for your venue?
- Is there a specific time the event must end?
- What is the payment schedule?
We really lucked out with our location since honestly when we did the tour 'we just knew' it was the place for us. I know a lot of people say that and it seems corny and unrealistic but I knew the moment we walked out to the area our wedding would take place, I could see myself getting married right there. I honestly believe if you have your hesitations about getting married or something in the process, there is a reason for it. Discuss this with your partner to decide if it will really be a hinderance to your big day. After all, in the end, you want to be happy with the location you choose, not just because you are spending so much but also because a lot of your decisions about the wedding day will also be impacted by your location/venues.