How to Choose Your Wedding Venue

Here at Social Pantry, we cater to plenty of marriages each year so we certainly know a thing or two when it comes to finding the ideal location for a wedding reception to remember. We’ve highlighted a few of our top tips for when it comes to picking your perfect wedding venue to give a helping hand when it comes to making one of the most important decisions when tying the knot.

Weddings as we know them are looking quite different these days with seemingly never ending elements to consider on top of the vital list of details every bride and groom has to consider when planning their perfect day, but one thing that hasn’t changed is the importance of picking the perfect wedding venue. Read below for Social Pantry’s latest guidance on finding your perfect wedding venue.

What should I look for in a wedding venue?

From traditional halls and countryside barns to luxury yurts and manor house gardens, there is certainly no shortage of wedding venue ideas out there, so it’s not surprising it can feel overwhelming when beginning to look at the endless options for your wedding reception. 

A quick google of ‘wedding venue ideas’ can bring up a plethora of suggestions of places to get married you may never have considered before now. You may have a definite idea on how you want your wedding reception to be from the outset or perhaps your dream wedding venues are something you’ve never considered, either way be open to what you may find. Just like the dress, a wedding venue you had always envisaged may not turn out to be ‘the one’.

Consider all of the elements that need to come together to make everything that extra special. Begin your search with an open mind and remember, it’s a joint decision so willingness to compromise to find wedding venues that tick both your boxes is key!

Each wedding venue will have their own rules when it comes to the food and drink options and it’s really important you confirm their policy from the beginning. You could potentially save a lot of money in the long run by considering places to get married that allow couples to provide their own catering and it could also allow you to add those extra special details that otherwise wouldn’t be permitted. 

You’re also allowed a lot more freedom of choice by opting for one of the many wedding venues that are flexible with catering options. Perhaps you have a friend that could make the most wonderful wedding cake, is there a catering company you’ve always wanted to use or a special winery you had in mind? Weigh up what it is you want to include in your dream day, you’ll then be able to confirm if a wedding venue that allows outside caterers is a vital requirement.

What is the average price of a wedding venue?

A wedding reception is not always cheap and the hire of wedding venues can often be the most costly part of your big day but there are so many different options and wedding venue ideas to suit all budgets. It is possible to be clever with your costs and turn something that doesn’t appear to be much into the perfect wedding reception (we’ve witnessed the most incredible transformations with the help of just simple tealights and beautiful blooms) but think about how much time and effort you want to put in. 

The lead up to a wedding reception can be a hectic time, do you want the added element of DIY wedding venue tasks? When deciding upon your budget not only do you need to consider how much money you want to spend but also how much time you can afford.

When should I pick my wedding venue?

Ideally, the wedding venue should be found before anything else is established. This will give you an idea of numbers, and the space you have to work with. Some couples may start looking more than a year in advance. We recommend you start looking for a wedding venue at least a year in advance as this gives you plenty of time to find a place that works with your budget and style.

Regardless of how perfect the place appears, there are many factors which will impact the suitability of all wedding venues and should be decided upon before you begin to view potential locations. Make a list of your requirements when investigating wedding venue ideas and decide on what it is you’re not willing to compromise on for your wedding reception.

A browse of a wedding venues website and a quick scroll through their Instagram posts may be enough to have your heart set on what appears to be one of the most perfect places to get married, but don’t underestimate the importance of visiting the wedding venue in person. Just as you wouldn’t buy a house without a viewing, it’s the only way you can truly get a feel for the place and should be first on your priorities before deposits are paid and plans are made. 

You should have a rough date in mind when you begin to view wedding venues. The time of year will have a huge impact on all elements of your wedding reception but for the venue it is vital. The weather can never be depended on, as we know all too well in the UK, but a marquee wedding in December is pretty much guaranteed to be a bit on the cold side! Once you have your season decided upon you will be able to make a much more educated decision on which type of wedding venues will suit the time of year and the overall feel you want for your special day.

How long does it take to find a wedding venue?

It can take months to find the perfect place, or you may just find it after a couple of viewings! The time it takes to find your wedding venue is dependent on many factors and your willingness to compromise can play a large part when thinking about places to get married. There are so many wonderful wedding venue ideas so try not to be too narrow minded when you begin your search and you may find something unexpectedly perfect for your wedding reception. The most popular wedding venues can be booked up more than two years in advance in peak summer season. Key dates will also be snapped up fast, so if you do have a very specific dream wedding venue and date you want to wed, then start your search early!

Here at Social Pantry we have been providing wedding catering services for over nine years and are always happy to discuss how we could potentially work together to bring your dream wedding to life. Whichever stage of the planning you may be at please find more info on our bespoke wedding catering services here or feel free to get in touch and we’ll be happy to chat over in more detail: