Singaporebrides | Fine Dining

December 2013

5 Simple Tips on How to Choose a Wedding Venue

Unlike the weddings of yesteryear, weddings today aren’t only held in hotel ballrooms or traditional Chinese restaurants. You can now choose to get hitched in cafes, small restaurants, country clubs or even overseas.

While this means more options to choose from, having infinite wedding venue possibilities also implies you’ll be spending more time researching on all the possible venues just to pick the perfect one. To help you speed up your search, we’ve narrowed down the five most important concerns (aside from the good old “location, location, location” concern you already know) you should consider when choosing a wedding venue.

1. Budget

weddingvenue2 Photo by Samuel Goh Photography

Before you start going through the list of wedding venues, agree with your fiancé on how much both of you are willing to set aside for your venue. Clarify if that amount includes miscellaneous items such as decorations or not. Once you have a budget in mind, look only at venues that meet your means. Now, if you happen to fall in love with one that is out of your range, don’t despair! Enquire with the venue to check if their cost includes other wedding essentials such as decorations or free flow or beer and drinks. Go for it if the stipulated cost is now within your budget for the venue, decorations and beverages. Getting more than one item from a vendor means you’ll only have to liaise with one vendor and save yourself time and effort spent searching for others.

Now, if the cost does not include anything else aside from the use of the venue and you’re dead set on getting married there, then think out of the box and look for other venues within your budget that allow you to recreate the same ambience. Alternatively, consider slashing the budget for other things on your list to pay for it, or get married during the off-peak season for cheaper rates.

2. Size

weddingvenue3 Image cc licensed ( BY NC ND ) flickr photo by Lea Ann Belter

Knowing how many guests you’ll be inviting to your wedding will help narrow down your options of wedding venues. While you don’t need to come up with a finalised guest list this early in the wedding planning process, you do need an estimate of the number of guests you are intending to invite. Your budget will provide a hint on how big your wedding should be, and help narrow down your options by eliminating venues that do not meet these criteria. However, do bear in mind that your guest list is subject to further changes, so remember to enquire with your shortlisted venues on their minimum and maximum capacity in the event that you need to add or remove anyone from your estimated guest list.

3. Style

weddingvenue4 Photo by Samuel Goh Photography

A quick way to zoom in on venues that meet your requirements is to decide how you want your wedding to be styled. Look at outdoor venues if you are gunning for a rustic garden wedding or if you want a more private and enclosed area for your big day, search indoor venues such as hotels and restaurants. In the event that your shortlisted venue is unable to accommodate either your budget or number of guests, think out of the box and be open-minded. Rustic garden weddings need not only be outdoors; with appropriate decorations, it can be recreated indoors or at a restaurant’s alfresco area. Similarly, some outdoor venues offer the option of setting up marquees to keep your celebrations a private affair.

4. Weather

weddingvenue5 Image cc licensed ( BY ND ) flickr photo by Corey Balazowich

Although we do not experience four different seasons in Singapore like most of the world do, we do go through unpredictable weather at certain times of the year. For instance, the start and end of the year tends to be wetter as compared to the middle of the year, which tends to be the driest and hottest period. So if you’re planning an outdoor wedding, the middle of the year is the best time to do so when rain is less likely to ruin your big day. However, that is not to say that you can’t have an outdoor wedding during the wetter months. Just make sure that you have a wet weather plan you can fall back on. But with our weather getting increasingly unpredictable recently, it is best to have a wet weather plan if you’re having an outdoor wedding regardless of the time of the year.

5. Shortlist

weddingvenue6 Image cc licensed ( BY NC SA ) flickr photo by Avangard Photography

Always pay the venues you’ve shortlisted a visit to tour the place in person and discuss your wedding vision and wants with their wedding consultants. Pay attention to the layout of the place during your tour and identify routes your guests can take to the venue if you are considering getting married at an outdoor venue that might not be easily accessible to some of your guests. If you have a wedding planner or coordinator, bring them along for the site visit. They may have a different take of the venue and might offer some professional advice on what works and what doesn’t.

Ideally, you should visit the venue during the day and time your wedding will be held at, especially for outdoor venues. How the space looks like during different times of the day will differ depending on how the sunlight bathes the venue in the morning and evening. So if you plan to say your “I do’s” in the evening, it is better for you to see how the place looks like during that exact time of the day.

The Finer Details

weddingvenue1 Image cc licensed ( BY NC ND ) flickr photo by Lea Ann Belter

When you’ve found the venue of your dreams and are ready to sign your name on the dotted line, don’t. Or at least, not until you’ve got the finer details sorted out first. Always ask to see a full breakdown of all the costs in an itemised list that shows what is and isn’t included in the total cost. Find out how much you need to top up if you wish to include additional items and if GST is reflected in the final cost. If not, ask to see the total cost after the addition of GST. You should also check with them on their cancellation policy and find out if they will be refunding you a part of the cost in the event of a cancellation or not.

Don’t be afraid to voice out any questions and clarify as many of your doubts as possible during your appointment with the venue. Their representatives will be more than happy to help you flesh out as many details as possible so you’ll be able to make an informed decision.


Feature image by Samuel Goh Photography.