Here is the great thing about technology! When unable to leave your home, you are still able to wedding plan from the comfort of your couch (and maybe with snacks involved too!).
Could be you are unable to visit your venue in person because of the pandemic, or perhaps it is distance and scheduling. Either way most venues are now offering virtual tours, and we approve!
Here are a few tips to choose your venue… virtually!
1. Decide on your MUST HAVES
For example: Guest accommodation, if you want 250 and they only fit 100 guests, not a fit! Do you need outdoor space? What are their vendor requirements? What’s their curfew?
It is ideal when starting to at least have your guest count, budget, desired locations (geographically), and wedding date range. Getting your highest priorities in order first will make the process of finding your ideal venue MUCH more simplified and streamlined.
2. Nail down your budget
This is not always the most fun part but having a budget in mind when starting is key! It would be heartbreaking to fall in love with a venue and then find out later you can’t afford it! So sit down with your fiancé (and or family) and crunch those numbers.
3. Narrow down your top choices
Create an A-list or top 3-4 venue choices. See if they are available for your desired dates and within your selected budget. Once you have those in place you can start setting up the virtual tours!
There can actually be advantages to doing a live virtual site tour: One you get to be in your own home, you can screenshot or record portions for future reference, and later these can be shared with anyone else who helps in the decision-making.
4. Your live Tour
The coordinator will most likely begin the “tour” with a quick overview or consultation. Use this time to discuss your vision for the wedding day, and your style and preferences.
A few pro tips for your virtual wedding venue tour:
- Schedule your tour during the day so the event spaces are well lit in natural light. Even if you want an outdoor ceremony near sunset, it can be difficult to see details on a screen in dark or dusky lighting.
- Make sure your device is fully charged and that you have a quick connection!
- Choose a part of your home that is comfortable but also free of distractions. Turn off the TV and get cozy. Dedicate at least 45 minutes to an hour for this tour.
- If possible record your tour! Most phones have the option to record your screen. (if you’re like me you may need to practice beforehand!)
- Ask all of the questions! You are unable to see it in person so there is no such thing as asking too many questions! Chat with your planning team (partner or family and create a list of questions you may need answered during the tour!) Create your question list and keep it handy!
- For a fuller picture it sometimes helps to ask for references or speak with past couples!
5. Make it official
Read all the fine details for each venue, create a pros and cons list and compare your top options. AND THEN… pick a winner!! Have the on-site coordinator go over all the details with you and make sure everything you verbally agreed to during the site tour is written in the agreement.
Once you have been able to re-read the agreement along side your finance with no pressure and everything fits for you and your wedding day… you can sign the dotted line!
Congrats!! Celebrate the evening with a glass of champagne or your favorite take out dinner/dessert!