If you read our recent blog post that outlines Things to Do Once You Get Engaged, you know that one of the first steps in the wedding planning process should be selecting your wedding venue.
No matter which city you say “I do!” in, it will likely have a large number of potential venues to choose from. Once you’ve narrowed this list down to your favorites, the next step is to schedule a wedding venue tour to see venues in person (or virtually) and decide which one is the best fit.
There are many important questions to ask before you decide which venue is right for your wedding day. From date availability and guest capacity to bathrooms and parking, we’re sharing our list of some important questions to ask a wedding venue before you sign on the dotted line.
Questions To Ask A Wedding Venue Before You Tour
While we know you can’t wait to visit potential venues with your fiancé, there are a few important questions to ask before even stepping foot on site. After all, you don’t want to fall in love with a venue that doesn’t fit your vision or budget for the big day!
While it’s common for wedding venues to have basic information on their website, make sure you answer these essential questions about your potential venues before you do a site visit:
1. IS MY PREFERRED WEDDING DATE AVAILABLE?
Wedding venues often book up several years in advance for popular dates, So try to get an idea of your wedding date options before you visit each venue.
It’s okay if you have a specific date or time frame in mind. Just know that availability is a lot easier when you’re flexible. Some wedding venues even offer Thursdays or Fridays at a considerably lower price.
2. WHAT IS THE WEDDING VENUE CAPACITY?
Before you start visiting wedding venues, it’s important to have a rough idea of how many guests will be invited to the wedding. While you don’t have to know an exact number, you wouldn’t want to arrive at a venue and discover that it is far too small or too large for the guest count that you have in mind.
Some wedding venues also have multiple spaces to choose from, each with different capacities. Having a ballpark idea will help your venue tour guide narrow down which options will work well for you, and help share ideas for how you can best utilize the spaces.
Tip: Our St. Augustine wedding venue can host intimate wedding ceremonies and receptions for as few as 40 people, or extravagant seated banquets for up to 200 guests.
3. What is the price range for the venue, and what does that include?
Your wedding venue will likely take up a lot—if not most—of your wedding budget.
When comparing venue options, you’ll probably realize that pricing can vary wildly from one venue to another. Some wedding venues have all-inclusive wedding packages, while others charge a venue rental fee that allows you to customize your vendors. Pricing can also vary based on the dates that you are considering.
In addition to the cost of your wedding options, it’s also a good idea to ask whether the venue offers any payment plans.
Tip: The Treasury on the Plaza offers a Custom Wedding Package that allows you to customize your wedding vendors, an All-Inclusive Intimate Wedding Package, and a semi-inclusive package called the Eat, Drink, and Be Married Wedding Package. All of the details on these packages can be found in the Packages section of our website, and our team is standing by via phone or email to talk you through which option might work best for your wedding day!
4. Can we make our wedding vision come to life at this venue?
Are you picturing an indoor wedding in a grand indoor space, a casual outdoor wedding, or something else entirely?
Most venues have photo galleries or videos on their website for you to imagine how your wedding vision might fit within the space. If you have a specific style in mind, ask if they have any additional pictures that represent the style, color palette, or theme that you are looking for. You may even want to check out the wedding venue’s Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, or Pinterest accounts for additional inspiration before seeing the venue in person.
Questions to Ask a Wedding Venue During A Venue Tour
It’s tour time! Get excited!
Visiting wedding venues always makes the wedding planning process feel more “real.” You can finally start to picture what your big day is going to look like! It’s also a great opportunity to ask many of the other important wedding venue planning questions. Below is our wedding venue questions checklist!
Services & Amenities
Tip: The sales team at The Treasury on the Plaza stresses that getting a clear understanding of what’s included is very important when comparing wedding venues. “This will help you understand the value of what you are paying for at each venue, and also helps you get an understanding of what you will need to bring or provide through other wedding vendors.” See our St Augustine wedding packages, to help determine which wedding package best suits your needs!
- What services and amenities are included with the venue rental?
- How many hours are included in the package or venue rental of the space?
- Are there private suites where we can get ready prior to the wedding?
- When do vendors and the wedding party have access to each of the spaces?
- Do you host multiple events in one day?
- What does a typical wedding day timeline look like?
- Is parking available on-site? Is parking an additional fee?
- What parts of the venue are handicap accessible for elderly or disabled guests?
- Are there noise restrictions?
- How many bathrooms are available?
- What is the backup plan for outdoor spaces for rain or inclement weather?
- Who is responsible for setting up and cleaning up wedding decor? Is venue cleaning after the wedding included in the cost?
Food & Beverage
- Do you have an in-house caterer? If not, is there a list of approved caterers?
- Is there a food and/or beverage minimum?
- If using an off-site caterer, is there a kitchen available for them to use?
- Is a wedding cake included in the package? If not, is there a list of preferred bakeries?
- Do you charge cake-cutting fees?
- Do you allow outside alcohol? If so, do you charge corkage fees?
- Do you provide alcohol service in-house? If not, is there a list of approved alcohol service providers?
- Do you offer a menu tasting or bar tasting if those services are provided in-house?
Tip: The Treasury on the Plaza has a full liquor license, so all beverage services will be provided by our team. Please see our Bar Packages. We look forward to customizing your selections during your complimentary private bar tasting!
Wedding Décor & Rentals
- Are any furniture, decor items, or lighting included with the venue rental? Are any upgrades available?
- Is there a preferred florist, decorator, or rental company?
- Are there any décor restrictions?
- Can existing furniture in the main venue spaces be moved?
- Does the venue have a sound system, microphones, and/or speakers? What portions of the event can they be used for?
- Is there a recommended place for a band or DJ? Do they need additional electricity or staging?
- Is a dance floor included?
- For any outdoor spaces, are any heaters, fans, or tents included or available to rent?
Wedding Vendors & Staffing
- Is there a preferred or required vendor list that you request that couples choose their vendors from?
- Do you require a wedding planner? If so, what are the requirements?
- Who is my contact person at the venue up until the wedding day and on the day of our event? What is their role?
- Is venue security needed?
- What other venue staff is on-site the day of our wedding and what are they responsible for?
Tip: At Treasury on the Plaza, you have a dedicated venue event manager who works with you to seamlessly assist with venue-related planning. You also have support staff on-hand the day of your wedding!
Booking the Venue, Pricing, & Payments
- Can you place a hold on our wedding date? If so, how long is the hold available?
- How much is the initial deposit? Is it refundable?
- How do you structure the payment schedule?
- Are service charges, taxes, and gratuity fees included?
- Is wedding insurance required? If so, what type of insurance is needed?
- What are the cancellation and rescheduling policies?
WE CAN’T WAIT TO MEET YOU!
We hope this list of questions makes your search for the perfect wedding venue easier. If you’re considering a wedding in St. Augustine, we would love for you to consider The Treasury on the Plaza, one of St. Augustine’s most unique venues.