Brides and grooms alike want this special day to be perfect, and one of the most crucial aspects of wedding planning is choosing a wedding venue.
Every wedding is unique, so it’s important to choose a venue that will be able to help you achieve your dream event. To this end, we’ve put together a list of questions to ask your wedding venue that will help you choose the venue that’s right for you.
Wedding Venue Questions: General
These wedding venue questions are the first questions you should ask. They will provide you with a broad overview of the venue’s wedding policies and whether or not they fit your vision for your wedding.
- Is the venue available on the date you need it?
- How many guests can the banquet room accommodate?
- What are their wedding packages and what is included?
- What other events, if any, are going on at the venue on the same day?
- Is there another event scheduled for your room at a different time during the same day? I.e. will there be a time constraint on your event?
- How long are you able to have the room?
- What rooms are included? Bathrooms, bridal party rooms, lounge area, cocktail area, and coatroom?
- Is there a designated smoking area?
- Is an outdoor area included for a cocktail reception?
- Is the room accessible for disabled guests?
- Is there a secure area to store wedding gifts?
Only if you are satisfied with the answers to these questions should you continue to more specific questions about your individual wedding. These general wedding venue questions may help you rule out venues that absolutely do not fit with your wants and needs.
Wedding Venue Questions: The Set-Up
Setting up for your wedding is probably the point of highest stress on your wedding day. It’s the time when most can go wrong: things not being delivered, not being placed in the appropriate locations, etc.
Knowing beforehand your wedding venue’s policy regarding the set-up may help alleviate some of that stress. These wedding venue questions will provide you with specifics regarding what the venue will and won’t allow during set-up.
- What does a typical layout of the room on a wedding day look like?
- Do they have photographs to show you of other weddings?
- Can you come back and see it set up for another wedding?
- Who is the main venue contact for the day of the wedding?
- Is there anything you need to bring in that they do not have?
Wedding Venue Questions: Decorations
Decorations are an essential element to every wedding, as they often form the centerpiece to many wedding photographs for you to treasure forever.
Decorations can make or break a wedding venue: for instance, if you want live betta fish wedding centerpieces (Google it, it’s real) and the venue you’re touring doesn’t allow any live animals for any reason, well, now you have to decide if you want the venue or the centerpieces. These questions can help you arrive at these tough decisions before you put any deposits down.
- When can you start decorating?
- Are there decorating restrictions?
- Can the centerpieces contain candles?
- What do they use for table settings?
- What decorations does the venue provide?
- Do you have to provide your own place cards?
- How many people can sit at one table?
- Are there booster seats or high chairs available for children?
Wedding Venue Questions: Food
They say that one of the things people remember most about the wedding is the food. These wedding venue questions will help you determine if the venue you are touring will work with your catering plan. Or, if you don’t have a catering plan yet, the venue’s answers to these questions may help you choose one.
- What are the different ways the venue serves? Buffet, family style, individual plates?
- Do they provide in-house catering? If not, do they have a preferred list of caterers?
- Can you arrange for a tasting?
- Is there a cost for a tasting?
- What does the venue provide for drinks with the meal?
- Can they accommodate special diets?
- How many choices can you offer your guests for meals?
- How many wait staff will be provided?
Wedding Venue Questions: Cake
Let them eat cake!
We all dream about our wedding cake, and it’s often one of the things wedding guests look forward to the most. These wedding venue questions regarding the dessert of the hour will help you formulate your cake plans.
- Do they provide a place for the cake?
- Do they provide a cutting knife?
- Is there a cake-cutting fee?
Wedding Venue Questions: Alcohol
We all know that this is an important subject for our guests. Weddings are parties, after all!
There are also some legal concerns with serving alcohol at a private event, and these questions can help you ascertain your legal ability to have alcohol at your wedding.
- Does the venue have a liquor license to serve alcohol?
- Does the venue provide the alcohol and bar service?
- Do they provide a cash bar or an open bar?
- Does the venue hire the bartenders and is there a charge per bartender?
- Do they charge for unopened bottles after the reception?
- Is there a corkage fee?
- Are there any restrictions on the type or quantity of alcohol to be served?
- Can wine be given as a party favor?
Wedding Venue Questions: Music/Dancing
If one of the things people remember most about a wedding is the food, the other is the music! You, of course, want everyone to have a good time at your wedding, and part of that is plenty of dancing.
- Can you bring in a band or DJ?
- What do they have for a sound system? Speakers, microphones, etc.?
- When can the band or DJ set up?
- How many people does the dance floor accommodate?
- What time do they allow the music to play until?
Wedding Venue Questions: Payment
This is important for both you and the venue. The answers to these questions can help you decide if it’s feasible for you to hire this venue.
- What is the total cost and what is required for a deposit?
- Do they offer payment plans?
- What type of payment can they take – cash, check, credit card?
- What is their cancellation policy?
Wedding Venue Questions: Insurance
If anything goes wrong through no fault of yours, you don’t want to be liable. This is why it’s important to ascertain the venue’s status insurance-wise.
- What are the insurance requirements for you and your vendors?
- Does the venue have its own insurance coverage?
Wedding Venue Questions: Photography
This is the method by which you’ll be holding on to your memories of your special day for the rest of your life. These questions could help you determine if your venue will help or hinder that endeavor.
- Are there any photograph or video restrictions?
- What suggestions do they have for locations to photograph?
Wedding Venue Questions: Rain Back-Up Plan
This is really only important for outdoor venues, but for those venues, it is absolutely essential that there be a backup plan in case of rain. If the venue you are touring has none, especially if you live in an area of fickle weather, it’s possible you may need to look elsewhere.
- Do they have outdoor covered areas such as canopies or tents in case of rain?
- Do they have indoor space available if you need to move people outside to inside?
- Do they have a generator for power outages?
Wedding Venue Questions: Ceremony
This is the most important part of your wedding, and the part you want to go absolutely smoothly.
- Can the venue accommodate the ceremony?
- Are the ceremony and reception held in the same room or separate rooms?
- If the same room, what can be expected for set up and take down to switch over from the ceremony to the reception?
- How long will it take?
- Does the venue provide the seating for the ceremony?
- What is the cost to have both the ceremony and reception at the venue?
- Are you able to have a rehearsal at the venue and rehearsal dinner?
- Can rose petals be strewn?
Wedding Venue Questions: Overnight Accommodations
This is important if you have family coming from out of town.
- Are there overnight accommodations or do they partner with local hotels?
- What are the room rates?
- Is there a wedding discount for blocks of rooms?
Wedding Venue Questions: Parking
Parking can make or break any event. If the venue doesn’t have reasonable parking accommodations, especially if you plan to have large numbers of guests, this may not be the venue for you,
- Where do guests park and how many spots are available?
- Is there valet?
- Is there a cost to park?
- What else is going on that night that may make it difficult for guests to park?
Getting Married in the Shreveport Area? Contact Silver Lake Ballroom!
Silver Lake Ballroom is a beautiful special events venue in historic downtown Shreveport. For more information about our facilities, give us a call at 318.426.3066 to schedule a tour or send us a message!