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Choosing your wedding venue can be the most important planning decision you make. Last week, we mentioned how choosing your date and venue should be done right away after getting engaged. When choosing a venue, consider a couple key factors: ceremony location, reception space size, bridal suite, packages available, and season.
When touring venues, pay attention to the ceremony and reception locations. If you want an outdoor ceremony and cocktail hour, make sure there is a backup plan for rain. Depending on your guest list size, always find out the capacity of the reception space. If you plan to get ready at the venue as opposed to your home or a hotel, inquire on the size of the bridal suite, the accommodations (such as food and champagne after the ceremony) and how early you can arrive if you plan on doing hair and makeup there. Many venues will offer special packaging if you bundle their preferred vendors, or they may offer mandatory on-site services such as the catering. If you are flexible with your date, you could also save money booking off season – always ask!