Venue Hunting Tips: How to Choose The Right Wedding Venue!

Venue Hunting Tips: How to Choose The Right Wedding Venue!

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Choosing your wedding venue is a pretty huge (and exciting!) decision. But with so many epic venues out there, how do you narrow down your options and find the perfect location that matches your budget, style and vision?

Over the last 10 years, we’ve worked at hundreds of different wedding venues across the Gold Coast, Tweed Coast, Byron Bay and beyond – so it’s safe to say we know a thing or two about making this all-important decision.

If you’re currently hunting down your dream venue and aren’t quite sure where to begin, keep reading for our expert tips below!

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Image by Two Wild Hearts

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Image by Two Wild Hearts

1. Figure Out Your Wedding Day Vibes

Your wedding venue will have a massive influence over the atmosphere and vibe of your day, so it’s super important to consider your wedding vision first! Having a clear idea of your “dream” wedding will help you find a venue that compliments this.

To help you narrow down your options, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Surroundings: Are you picturing your wedding in the hinterland, by the beach, or in the city?

  • Style: Would you prefer a modern venue, or something more rustic? Read our top tips on finding your wedding style here!

  • Location: Are you imagining an indoor or outdoor event?

  • Structures: Do you want to host your wedding in a marquee or tipi?

  • Planning: Would you prefer an all-inclusive venue, or a completely blank canvas?

  • Dinner service: Are you picturing a cocktail wedding or a seated dinner?

  • Special requests: Do you have any specific needs such as on-site accommodation, a ceremony chapel, wheelchair access or room for kids to run around?

These questions should give you a great starting point when it comes to comparing different venue options.

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Image by Lucas & Co Photography

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Image by Lucas & Co Photography

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Image by Lucas & Co Photography

2. Create a (Rough) Guest List and Budget

Having a rough idea of your guest numbers will also help you search for an appropriate venue. Obviously, a large guest list will require more space, while a smaller guest list would work best with an intimate location. Make sure you check the maximum guest capacity (both seated and standing) with each of the venues you enquire with.

Your budget is another important consideration when scouting wedding venues. You don’t need to have a specific number in mind, but having a flexible range will help you narrow down venues that work within your means.

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Image by Bird and Boy Photography

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Image by Bird and Boy Photography

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Image by Bird and Boy Photography

3. Compile a Short-List

Now that your wedding vision, guest list and budget is ticked off, it’s time to compile a short-list of venues! Spend some time researching potential venues via local wedding directories, Instagram, Pinterest and wedding blogs. “Real wedding” blogs in particular are a great way to see what your potential venue looks like in action. Check out our latest wedding blogs right here for more inspo!

Get in touch with your favourite venues and ask for a copy of their wedding packages. Then, using the criteria you’ve already established above, you can start booking in those site visits!

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Image by Figtree Wedding Photography

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Image by Figtree Wedding Photography

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Image by Figtree Wedding Photography

4. Nail Your Site Visits

Make the most out of your site visits by coming prepared with a list of must-ask questions. For example:

  • What dates are available in the month we are considering?

  • When do we have access to the venue?

  • What time can our suppliers bump in and bump out?

  • How much is the deposit, and when is it due?

  • What is the payment plan for the remainder of the invoice?

  • Is there a wet weather backup plan?

  • What is the maximum guest capacity?

  • Is there accommodation onsite or nearby?

  • What is (and isn’t) included in the package price?

  • Are there any extra fees we should budget for?

  • Can I hire my own suppliers or is there a preferred list we need to stick to?

  • Do you have a sound system and microphones?

  • Are there any noise restrictions?

  • Do you have a dedicated wedding day coordinator?

  • Can we host our ceremony rehearsal here?

  • How many parking spaces are available onsite?

During COVID-times, you might also want to double check the cancellation policy and any specific rules around postponing or downsizing your guest list.

Along with asking plenty of questions, be sure to take photos and videos of each venue so you can look back and refresh your memory!

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Image by The Loved Ones

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Image by The Loved Ones

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Image by The Loved Ones

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Image by Beck Rocchi Photography

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Image by Beck Rocchi Photography

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Image by Beck Rocchi Photography

5. Trust Your Intuition

Finally, trust your instincts. If you walk into a venue and have an overwhelming feeling that “this is the one” – it probably is!

We are so lucky to be surrounded by incredible venues here in South East QLD and Northern NSW, and would love to help you get the ball rolling with your special day. If you’re ready to chat through your wedding plans, contact us on (07) 5523 9564 or send us an enquiry here.

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Image by Florin Lane

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