Now that you’re engaged, your friends are notified, your ring’s insured, and you’re ready to start planning! But don’t rush into the common mistake most brides make when planning their wedding. Oftentimes newly engaged couples go straight into wedding planning mode by searching for the venue. They look at various different wedding spaces before deciding on some key things. There are important criteria to consider when choosing the location of your big day.
Creating a budget is an important aspect of the planning. Consider what items are the most important for both of you. Some couples care more about the food and the music than the décor and flowers. Others care more about the venue than the DJ. These are just some examples. Decide with your fiancée what your common interests are. (If you’re both foodies, the caterer is an important decision). Based on your priorities, this will affect your budget. You may be willing to pay more for some vendors and less for others. Keep this in mind when creating an estimated budget.
Next, decide on an accurate guest count. You may think that you and your fiancée are both inviting the same number of guests but sometimes this isn’t the case. Depending on family size, and parents’ expectations this may impact your guest count. Communicate with your fiancée and both sets of parents to create a realistic idea of the size of your wedding. The physical location will also impact your guest size as well, as not everyone can attend a destination wedding. Though this isn’t a hard and fast rule, generally 80% of your guest list will attend a local wedding, though this number goes down to 60% for destination weddings. (Don’t quote me on this since each wedding is different and guests themselves vary in their social schedules, but this is a general observation).
Equipped with an estimated guest count and budget, it’s now a good time to start looking at venues. Knowing what you want beforehand will help you to eliminate invalid options and focus on what’s applicable for you and your fiancée. If the space can only hold 80 people and you’re inviting 200 guests you’ll know that it’s not a good fit. Likewise if the venue that you fell in love with can accommodate 300 people and you know that at most you’ll only have 100 guests, you can move on. Having a smaller guest count in a large space makes the room look uninviting and empty. Just some things to keep in mind.
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