For me and my husband the perfect venue can be the first one you visit. Unfortunately for a lot of couples the options are so endless that it can be a little overwhelming.
When I was preparing to visit venues I did my research online. Most venues have extensive information about their facilities online and researching your favorite venues online will cut down your physical searching time for sure.
There are many types of brides out there, but for me I am the "over-organized" bride. I had documents and paperwork for even the smallest thing. I thought, you can only do this once so do it right! The more I researched the venues, and watched wedding shows online, the more I realized that some of my questions haven't been answered. And boy did I have questions!
SO, I prepared myself two venue checklist documents.
I'm going to share these documents with you in hopes that they may help you to ease your questions for the venues, and possibly give you questions you didn't even think were necessary to ask! I'm also going to explain more in detail, why I decided to create these files for myself, and how they helped me to create my wedding.
I created two versions of each file in case one doesn't work. (I have the old 2002 Microsoft Word, so I don't know if that matters)
Free Downloadable Wedding Venue Checklist
Venue Checklist #1 (word doc)
Venue Checklist #1 (PDF adobe reader)
Venue Checklist #2 (word doc)
Venue Checklist #2 (PDF adobe reader)
These documents are for personal use only. All rights to these documents are property of Sandra Carpenter, any unauthorized posting of these documents is illegal. Link back to this site if you wish to blog about this post or the free checklists.
If anyone uses these documents to go "venue shopping" please leave a comment or link your blog post about your experiences with these checklists. I'd love to hear about it.
Elaborate explanation of the venue checklists:
The first checklist deals with what's included in the venue and what you'll need to supply yourself.
It's surprising how different each venue, and package within a venue is when it comes to what's included. Some venues had packages that included a bride & groom suite, centerpieces, chair covers, candles, floral arrangements and even a D.J. For someone like me, these extra inclusions can be very helpful in completing your wedding dream. Knowing the items or services that are not provided can also help you plan further in what you will need to purchase yourself. For example, in our venue there was no dance floor when I arrived for the viewing. After asking about it, they told me it was included and that it was a snap together floor that is only put out when there is a wedding.
The second checklist deals with the handling of one specific venue in more detail.
When I realized how many extra fees were to be included after you buy a package or even just a hall I was stunned. I wanted to make sure I knew where and what every single penny was going to and what it covered. For example, the damage and deposit fee. A deposit on a venue is mandatory and also one of the scariest deposits you can make. I asked the venue, "If you go up in flames before my wedding, and you are burnt to the ground what happens?" Can you believe that I wouldn't get my deposit back? Furthermore I would be out of a venue entirely. Of course, that was the very worst of 'what if's' and they did give me information on insurance from a different source. I was going to be my own D.J. But did you know there are still fees you need to pay for that?
I wanted to have a lot of little extras in my wedding, but many venues have restrictions on many items! All the indoor venues in my city refused to allow confetti, silly string or rice.
So the second checklist handles the little items that need to be addressed.
These checklists are just guidelines on areas I found to be important to me. If you plan on using them, go over them before arriving so you know which items apply to your venue.