Saying yes! to venues & menus

Welcome back to our Wedding Series.

Last week we spoke about choosing the perfect dress and this week we will look at two areas that are considered to be of vast importance to the successful execution of your wedding.

Where??????……..and what you will eat??????

Wedding dreams vary from fairy tales to rustic and outdoors scenes. Choosing the venue should be done so the theme and preferences are combined. The bride and groom has the option of choosing different locations for the wedding and the reception according to their wishes. Wedding locations include Churches, Beaches, Hotels and Resorts, Halls, Gardens and so on. Below are questions you will need to ask yourself when deciding on the venue and menu for your special day.

Tip 1: What type of scene/theme you are looking for?

Venue: Decide if you want a traditional church wedding, an indoor wedding that allows for fairy tale décor, an outdoor garden type wedding with flowers strewn in a myriad of colors or a tropical/ beach wedding. The venue should allow for the décor to be done in accordance to the theme chosen.

Menu: The scene of the wedding helps to determine the type of menu and layout. Having the reception in doors can help to dictate if the meal will be served or a buffet style. Outdoors maybe cause difficulties to host a buffet due to the openness of the area while indoors may reduce the effectiveness of a buffet as it may result in long lines and insufficient space for movements.

Tip 2: How many persons you will be inviting to the ceremony?

Venue: Not all venues can accommodate a large number of guests and will have minimum and maximum guests count. It is advised to aim for the minimum number of guests as it always easier to add than remove guests from your list.

Menu: Menus can be offered as a part of the package or priced separately. Some caterers offer meal packages on a per guest basis and can range from one course to a three course meal. This means that the cost for the menu is positively related to the number of guests and the type of food chosen has a positive effect on the cost.

Tip 3: How much are you willing to spend?

The main thing you should consider is the budget for the wedding and how much will be allocated to the venue/ (s) and menu for the day. By now you should note that the size of the venue and menu is directly related to the number of guests. However, all this should be taken into consideration when allocating the budget or vice versa. It appears that the menu may end up being the most expensive part of the ceremony as its pro rata cost also depends on the type of food being offered.

Tip 4: When do you want to get married?

Many couples choose different dates for their wedding. It varies between the date they met to a special holiday while others may choose a date that is convenient for their schedule. However, being flexible and choosing the earliest possible date in an off season may guarantee your dream venue at a lower rate.

Other tips to consider when selecting the venue and menu are:-

  1. Consider you culture, preferences, possible themes and willingness to incorporate new ideas.
  2. Consider the guests to your wedding and their diet choices. It will be difficult to satisfy the preferences of all your guests but it will help to have variety for those who have different lifestyle choices such as vegetarians etc.
  3. Choose a caterer- this can be done in conjunction with the venue and packages offered or independently of the venue.
  4. Before doing on-site visits, call around to ascertain venue’s availability and dates. This eliminates time wasted on viewing venues you may not choose. Also, arrange a meeting with the caterer to discuss the menu ideas, however this should be done after you have identified your preferences and ideas.
  5. Narrow your choices for on-site visits. Sufficient research can eliminate the need to visit all locations you may consider. Browse the venue’s websites and pictures of ceremonies held there before and keep a journal of all venues you may consider- highlighting all you like and dislike about each.
  6. It is good to book your venue and confirm your menu at least six (6) months prior to your wedding date. This gives sufficient time for you, your caterer and wedding planner to get everything in place for that special day as well as allow for changes if necessary.
  7. Your theme can be chosen after the venue has been selected.

See you next time.

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