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Comparing Wedding Venues

You should first think about the location. Unless you want a destination wedding, the location should be fairly close to you, such as in your city or the next. If the drive would take an hour or more, you might want to get a block of hotel rooms for you and your bridesmaids and groomsmen. Otherwise, you will have to worry about everyone arriving on time and then making the long drive back after a busy day. Be sure to factor lodging into your expenses in this case, since it is customary to pay for at least a portion of the hotel costs for your bridal party. In this way, you might find that it is easier and cheaper to pick a venue that is closer to your house.

Your next thought, as you browse wedding venues, should be whether you can choose your own vendors and services, or if you have to go through those that the location provides. Many locations that host weddings will require you to purchase a package from them that includes catering, photography, flowers, music, and more. If you do not have much time to choose each vendor on your own, this may be a good idea, but it is often a bit more expensive because the work is done for you. If you were hoping to hire a friend for photography, use your own music and speakers, or leave it up to a friend to videotape the event, you should find a location that does not make you use their preferred vendors.

If you are trying to save money, you will no doubt be comparing the prices for all the wedding venues you are considering. But if the one you really want is a bit more expensive, you can find ways to bring that price down. For example, many places reduce the price if you have your event in the off season or even on a certain day of the week when they are not very busy. Find out how the date of the ceremony and reception would affect the price before you make a decision based on money. You might be able to find a way to afford your dream location.