Top 20 Questions to Ask the Venue Manager
Get the specifics on wedding reception costs
By Tiesha Whatley
For a worry-free wedding and reception, get all the facts from all of your vendors -- especially venue managers. Question a wedding reception hall manager closely about room capacities and house rules. Take notes so you can compare different places to make your decision. Here are the key points to cover in your meetings with wedding venue managers:
Your first five questions pertain to the ceremony itself: Does the venue have accommodations for the ceremony and reception? Can it accommodate the number of guests you expect? Is its license only a civil license (which means it can't hold religious ceremonies)? Are there any hotels nearby for traveling guests? If there are, does the venue set up any special rates for customers?
Ensure that your guests have a good time at your reception by finding out as much as possible about the room you are considering: Is the area for the reception large enough for dinner, drinks and dancing? Will your guests have to leave after dinner while staff sets up the room for dancing? Is there a station for the disc jockey? Will the reception have to be split up into several different rooms? For how long can you reserve the room? What is the clean-up policy? If I hold the wedding and reception in one place, is there a charge for setting up and removing chairs?
Venues differ in their policies for catering and drinks: Is there a caterer on site and must I use that service? Is outside food allowed? Is there a kitchen onsite? Will you have to purchase drinks from the venue or can you provide your own liquor? What are the meal options? Are there extra costs for wait staff if I choose sit-down dining? Is there room for buffet-style dining? Does the venue rental fee include tables, chairs, table linens, plates and utensils?
These general questions may inspire additional questions to fit your own circumstances: What is included in the price? Is there an event planner on site? Does the venue allow outdoor affairs during the summer months? What are the cancellation and refund policies? Do I have to buy liability insurance? Do I have to pay for a security guard? Is the guest parking free?
Once you have decided on a venue, read the contract carefully before signing it. The contract should include all appropriate points from the answers to your questions. If the contract contains anything you did not expect and are not happy with, ask the venue manager to alter it before you sign it and pay the deposit.
About the Author
Tiesha Whatley is a contributor to DexKnows.com.
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Pick reception venue
Want to keep decor costs to a minimum? Consider a winery or other outdoor setting to provide a natural pretty scene. Hotels, country clubs and restaurants are also popular choices -- some will require more decor help than others. If you have your heart set on an off-site caterer, make sure your venue allows it.
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Catering services supplied by the wedding venue. If a venue offers in-house catering, typically off-site caterers are not permitted.View the Full Weddings Glossary