Wedding Planning 101
Arguably one of the most important elements of your wedding is your venue. It's where you will have all ofRead More
Congratulations! You just got engaged—and now you’re looking for venues! This is either a really fun adventure for some brides or can be an overwhelming task for others. But we want you to enjoy the process. So here’s what you need to know if you’re not sure where to start:
Finding your N.J. wedding venue should be at the top of your list of to-dos. It’s all about the date. Every other vendor you hire will ask you about your wedding date—and the only way you’ll know your wedding date is if you’ve found your venue and have made it official.
But in order to find your wedding venue, you’ll need to know a few things first:
—Your style. Are you a beach bride? A ballroom bride? Do you envision a rustic event on a farm or barn, or does the idea of a sophisticated hotel wedding sound more your style? The good news is that New Jersey has them all. Whatever you’re envisioning, you’ll be able to find here.
Look through our different categories of venues to help narrow down your search. Click on the following for many suggestions: Beach Venues, Ballroom Venues, Rustic Venues, Small Venues, Affordable Venues. Ask me for help (see the chat window at the lower left corner of your screen. It’s me—not a robot!) And talk to other brides in our Facebook Private Group. We’re all here for you to help you find the venue of your dreams!
—Your budget. This is a huge piece of information that you need to have before you go touring venues. You don’t want to fall in love with a $400-per-person mansion when all you can afford is $100 per person. The good news here, as well, is that New Jersey has it all. Literally every price point! Have a sit-down with your fiancé, parents or any other family members involved in financing your wedding, and be realistic about what you have to spend. You do not want to go into debt financing this affair!
To find venues in your price range, click here to do a search according to different price points. There truly is a venue for everyone.
—Your guest size. This is another large determining factor in which venue you choose. There’s a big difference between 40 or 400, and the size of your guest list may dictate which venue is right for you. Some locations simply can’t fit parties larger than 150, while others won’t host your event for less than 125. It all depends on the venue. So do a rough estimate of how many guests you’re wanting to invite—taking into consideration how many guests you can afford—and come up with a bottom-line number that’s realistic to work with.
—Inspiration. Once you’ve come up with a list of a number of venues, search our Real Weddings section for your top choices. Here, you’ll see real New Jersey couples who’ve hosted their weddings at your prospective location. You’ll see the ballroom and how it’s set up. You’ll see lighting during the day and at night. You’ll basically see your venue in action!
—Schedule a visit. If you still like what you see, now’s the time to contact your venue for a tour. A super easy way to do this is to contact the venue through your New Jersey Bride account. If you don’t have one yet, go set that up! Now, brides tell me all the time how they’ve toured more than 25 venues and they just can’t make up their mind. PLEASE don’t do this! All this will do is frustrate and confuse you. Do your research, be realistic with price, and limit your list to five at the most.
—Go with your gut—and your budget. How do you know which venue is “the one?” Trust me, you’ll get a feeling the minute you walk in the door. You’ll either envision yourself at the location or not. Tour all of the spaces (including bathrooms!), look at menus, ask about ceremony locations, and get all the information you can, which will help you to make your final decision. Price may be your the deciding factor—which is OK. Once you look at all the pros of your prospective locations, there will be a clear winner.
And then you’ll have your wedding venue—and your date! Take a quick break, relax and congratulate yourself on completing this huge step. Now you can start to focus on the next steps…photographer, gown, band, etc. But take it one step at a time, and you’ll have the wedding of your dreams!
Again, let us know if we can help with anything!! Good luck!