When planning a wedding, one of the first pieces of the puzzle that you'll tackle is your venue. Choosing your venue first can help many other parts of the wedding planning process fall into place, from the wedding date to the overall look and feel of your big day. However, it's also going to be one of the most expensive invoices you'll receive as well! Venues can run anywhere from $3k in a small town to over $10k in a big city, and prices can also vary based on what type of venue it is, the time of year, etc.
If the cost of wedding venues in your area is giving you sticker shock (and it probably will), don't despair — you don't have to blow your budget on a wedding venue. Though you might, however, have to get creative.
Not to worry though, brides We'll be sharing a few helpful tips to save money on your wedding venue. Ready to take notes?
1. Book on during non-peak times & seasons
Your best bet for getting a screaming deal on your wedding venue? Having a wedding during the wedding off-season. That generally means booking your big day for a date after October and before April. Yes, it could be a little chillier, but if you're on board with a fall or winter wedding day, you could potentially be saving thousands of dollars.
2. Get an itemized list of what your rental includes
You should know exactly how long your rental includes, as well as what rental items they'll be offering, service fees, etc. Having an itemized list of what costs are incurred will help you figure out where you can cut costs and negotiate on different services with your venue.
3. Look for a non-traditional wedding venue
The wedding venues in your area aren't just limited to the results in your Google search pulls up. However, you'll have to do the deep digging to find those off beat locations. Ask friends and wedding vendors you're already in touch with about unique places they've seen weddings take place in your area. Look on local wedding blogs, check out Pinterest for ideas and don't forget to scour your city for parks, gardens, restaurants, coffeeshops or even schools for rental information. You never know what you'll find!
4. If possible, look outside the city
If you're searching fro your wedding venue in an urban area, try looking for your perfect venue in locations a little outside the city proper. Looking within city limits for a venue can hike prices up twice what they would normally be for a similar venue in a more suburban or smaller town.
5. Have a small ceremony with a larger reception
Still finding it hard to make the traditional wedding venue work? Well, there's no reason you have to stick to tradition! Having a small, non traditional wedding ceremony in a courthouse can keep your wedding day simple and cost-effective. Throw a larger reception later in a restaurant or at even your backyard to invite the rest of your guests and have the bigger-feeling wedding celebration with friends and family.
What do you think, brides? Sure, these money-saving methods might not fit in at first with your vision for the dream day, but then again... either does spending WAY more money than you planned. With a little bit of due diligence, research and planning, you'll be able to find the perfect venue at the right price.