Create your guest list before you start looking at venues. You may be surprised that your “intimate wedding for 75” has instantly turned into 150 after both sets of parents have added their guests. You can’t begin researching potential venues until you have a concrete number of guests to accommodate.
After choosing your venue, be sure to go back and visit it at the same time of day your wedding will be held. The lighting based on the time of day can play a role in staging and photography decisions you will need to make.
Be sure to check for special needs… if you are planning an outdoor wedding at it rains, what is the venue’s back up plan… is there any construction on the site or nearby roads planned around your wedding date… smoking regulations, etc.
When visiting venues, along with a notebook and pen to record information, take photos. This is the perfect way to spark your memory when sorting through all the information when narrowing down your choices. Take general pictures, but also take pictures of your likes and dislikes so you have an account of points to consider.
You’ll gather a ton of information when visiting venues. Keep everything they give you and develop a filing system to organize the information. Add your notes and pictures to each file… then everything will be in one location!