Sema
Beginner April 2022

Venue overwhelm

Sema, on March 30, 2021 at 4:45 PM Posted in Wedding Reception 0 24
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There are sooo many options!! How many venues did you tour/ how did you decide what venue you wanted? I'm reached out to a lot of venues and there seems to be a lot of decent options. It's kind of overwhelming. What did you guys do to screen venues before you decided to tour them?

24 Comments

Latest activity by Eniale, on April 2, 2021 at 9:51 AM
  • Nicole
    Master September 2020
    Nicole ·
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    I reached out to about 30. I asked if they could send me a pricing brochure (or looked it up online if it was available). From there, I narrowed it down to about 12 that I physically went to look at. I created a word doc that I printed out for every venue we physically looked at so I could go back and compare information later.
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  • Sema
    Beginner April 2022
    Sema ·
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    Ok wow lol I saw so many people say they looked at like 3 or 4 and I was like how did you decide which ones to go look at. I think I'll end up viewing more too. Thank you!

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  • Rebecca
    Savvy December 2021
    Rebecca ·
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    I reached out to SEVERAL venues but we ended up only touring 5! We figured out which ones we wanted to tour by first making sure it was within budget, then we narrowed it down by the number of guests that they could accommodate, if we would be able to bring in our own vendors and then we took into consideration how long it took for them to respond to our inquiry (because of course you want your venue to have timely communication)! After we narrowed it down to our favorite venues that checked off all those boxes we then took into consideration distance from our house, friendliness of the person giving the tour and then of course the appearance! For me drive up appeal, a pretty outdoor space, and a spacious bridal suite were must haves!

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  • Janessa
    Dedicated November 2022
    Janessa ·
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    The options are sooo overwhelming. I loved the first venue I visited, and toured about 6 more after that. Not to mention, have emailed and still not ruled out the one I want most. As having to postpone the date it only made me able to look into more venues. Id say narrow it down to a theme first or decide by venue type: beach, country club, garden, barn, etc go from there, make a list of absolute must haves for example indoor and outdoor areas, alcohol provided, also by budget, and whether you want all inclusive package or pay just for venue type and then add on your own vendors.
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  • Sexypoodle
    Master October 2021
    Sexypoodle ·
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    We live in SoCal but decided to have a destination wedding in Vegas. We’ve been to Vegas loads of times but never approached it from a wedding planning angle. So online, I researched all of the hotels on (and near) the strip to view pics and learn more about their event venues. I also sent emails to obtain further information. I knew that I definitely didn’t want a basic ballroom style and preferred a venue with “personality”. So I was easily able to eliminate lots of venues an narrow the options down. Then when we visited Vegas for tours, we looked at 8 locations over three days. It worked out well and, of course, the very last venue was perfect and the one we booked.


    I think it helps to know it what you’re looking for and also what you don’t want. Research online first before wasting time touring too many locations and becoming confused.
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  • JA
    Devoted March 2022
    JA ·
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    I started with a list of about 15 venues, then check for availability and capacity (and price if that is a concern!) from there only 4 were available and would meet our basic needs. We toured those 4 and immediately knew that 2 just didn't feel right. After that we had a lot of discussions and looked at all the little details, and visited each one more time before making a final call. Good luck!

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  • Liz
    Devoted August 2021
    Liz ·
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    Looked at tons online, but we only toured three. We were planning to tour more, but we hit the nail on the head with one of the first three.


    1. Was a old church converted into a concert hall - all inclusive. I had dreamed about this place as my wedding venue prior to the official engagement. Once we toured, realized it just wasn't the right fit.
    2. Barn owned by my states wildlife department came complete with wildlife shows Smiley smile we liked it alot, but while it would technically fit our guest list, it would have been very cramped because we would have been at the venue's max capacity.
    3. Was our perfect place, everything from, size, location, price, amenities was perfect with even more stuff included that we didn't know we wanted Smiley smile not to mention when we toured it just felt right.
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  • Michelle
    Rockstar October 2022
    Michelle ·
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    Browse eventective.com and see what catches your eye. Decide if you want all inclusive (which basically has everything picked for you but you have 5 figure food/drink minimums and you can't get a tasting until after you book which is a red flag for many) or if you want a blank slate where you can bring in your own catering (most budget friendly and they have tables/chairs available). Make a list on the Googlesheets wedding planning template accessible on your phone to list amenities and contact info. Narrow it down from there.

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  • Meghan
    Master October 2019
    Meghan ·
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    We toured 2 venues and booked the second one. I was in communication with a few others, however, when we toured the 2nd venue we knew that was the one!
    What sold us was the overall vibe of the venue and how amazing the staff was! When communicating with other venues, I could just tell they weren’t the ones. Our venue had very professional staff, met our guest count and budget needs, and gave us all the feels!!!
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  • Pirate & 60s Bride
    Legend March 2017
    Pirate & 60s Bride ·
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    For our DW, we toured 12 venues in 4 days! We only set appointments at about 4-5. The rest we walked the grounds and took photos. It’s definitely a feeling when it’s right!
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  • Sema
    Beginner April 2022
    Sema ·
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    I initially thought I knew what I wanted (I’ve been liking hotels with ballrooms that have the option for a waterfront ceremony, I live in Florida) but then I also saw country clubs were pretty nice and seemed to be a bit cheaper so I wasn’t sure if the waterfront thing was necessary if I could still get a really nice venue. I’ll try making that list and see if that helps - thank you!
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  • Sema
    Beginner April 2022
    Sema ·
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    Oooh I like the idea of walking the grounds. Are you able to see the reception rooms? I’m guessing no but honestly I think seeing the grounds could also help rule some out without a full on tour
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  • Sema
    Beginner April 2022
    Sema ·
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    Wow I’ve never seen this site before thanks for sharing!!
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  • Sema
    Beginner April 2022
    Sema ·
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    For price did you ask for proposals before touring them? Some of the pricing PDFs seem confusing and like there’s a ton of add on fees haha.
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  • Pirate & 60s Bride
    Legend March 2017
    Pirate & 60s Bride ·
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    In some cases when a venue was a possibility we asked if someone could just show us the spaces for the ceremony/reception—they did. We ruled out one venue as we drove up because it was on a Main Street, very busy, and my hubby said “I don’t like it, let’s go.”
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  • Maureen
    Devoted November 2021
    Maureen ·
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    I’m picky, and knew from the get go I wanted a historic venue. Sooo that really narrowed down our options to a few historic places around town. We wrote down about 7 place and once I received info about what places could hold our guest count, it went down to three. We toured all three and made a decision from there.
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  • Courtney
    Expert September 2022
    Courtney ·
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    We knew our venue right away, because I used to work for them and it's where FH and I met.

    When reaching out to venues, just let them know how many people you're looking to host and what season/dates you're looking for. Then ask them if they require catering in-house or allow outside catering, what's the alcohol policy?

    Most venues should have a website that you can see photos of the spaces online whether here on WW or on their own websites.

    A lot of venues don't like to disclose their pricing until you've toured the space, but there are equally as many that don't have that hang up. My boss pushed really hard to have people come out to get pricing, because we wanted to build up the picture of your wedding at our venue before we told you pricing lol.

    You should always be able to see the reception site and even your ceremony site in person if you're going on a tour of the space. With hotels, ask if you can see a few of the sleeping rooms as well to get a feel for the vibe overall in the hotel.

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  • SHY
    Master January 2022
    SHY ·
    • Flag

    First we got a rough estimate of our guest list so we knew what size of venue we needed to be looking at. FH gave me the reigns after that lol.

    I knew I wanted a clean feel for our venue, so I just googled wedding venues in our area and literally looked at each website lol. I went through their galleries and any photos they had of real weddings to get a feel of what it would look like full of people. I narrowed it down by comparing pricing as well as how many people they could accommodate. That actually cut down my list by a lot! I ended up with 4 places to show FH, and he and I went through each one together. We eliminated 2 because they didn't offer table linens or real china, so after adding the rental cost for those, it would cost way too much. We were then left with 2 lol. We toured one and instantly fell in love but wanted to still see how it compared to the other one on our list.

    We ended up going with the venue we toured, and didn't even look at the second one lol. Venue 1 just had so much more to offer, came with table linens and real chine at no extra cost, AND the owner gave us $1k discount since our wedding is in January (off peak season).

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  • Jessie
    Devoted September 2020
    Jessie ·
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    I reached out to about 10 venues, toured 4 (technically 6, the venue we went with had 3 properties on the same street so we toured all of them).


    I started by the theme I was going for and emailed the ones I found that had the aesthetic I was going for. They sent the menus & important info, so I then narrowed it down to budget and how many people they can accommodate. Mind you, you'll learn a lot more about costs, fees, & rules when you talk in person. When we toured venues, that's how I learned my own deal breakers. I originally wanted a barn wedding with food trucks. I realized I wanted a venue that did the catering and bar, it was easier and more cost effective for us. After postponing our wedding twice, I'm very happy we did this. It was hard enough to get all our vendors on the same date again, I know it would have been even worse with those extra vendors. We also wanted a place where we could have both the ceremony & reception, definitely didn't want guests to go from one place to another.
    When it came down to it, we honestly just knew when we visited the 3rd venue. It was beautiful, the perfect aesthetic for us. Great food and meal packages that were really worth it. We really vibed with the event manager also.
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  • JA
    Devoted March 2022
    JA ·
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    It can be so confusing. Basically there is a venue fee (and if the ceremony will be there also, then a ceremony fee) They might have a caterer, in which case that would be on the brochure too (or even decor/lighting/bar, etc. Some venues have contracts with vendors that you have to use. For example, my venue has a specific caterer I had to use, so the brochure included the caterer's prices per person) Then there will be any taxes, and potentially a coordinator fee or something like that. You can absolutely ask the venue to give you an all-fees-included estimated price. Tell them you want to know the full cost of hosting your event with them.

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