Happy New Year! Let’s get married – where do we start?
There’s no doubt about it. Winter is a romantic time of year. Think wrapping up warm for muddy walks, cosy log fires, candle lit dinners and snuggling up with your loved ones. Throw in the magic and sparkle of Christmas and the excitement and the promise of a New Year and it’s no wonder than more marriage proposals take place in December than any other month of the year.
And when the hustle and bustle of Christmas & New Year is over, the elation of the actual proposal has passed and things return to normal in January, the next thing to do is…. to start planning your perfect big day!
But where do you start? Well quite frankly, the only place to start when planning your big day is…. by finding your perfect wedding venue and January is actually a great time to do it!
Open Days & Wedding Fayres
Lots of venues will be opening their doors to prospective couples in January. January is a notoriously quiet time for weddings and so venues will often have a spare weekend date or two to invite couples in to view their venue, sample the drinks and canapés’ menu and chat to recommended suppliers.
Local Registration Service
If you are opting for a civil marriage or partnership, your local registry office will be able to provide a list of venues that are licensed for civil ceremonies. Most venues have more than one location licensed for ceremonies and some even have an outdoor option which is perfect for a spring or summer wedding.
Online Wedding Directories such as Hitched and For Better For Worse are a great place to search for all things relating to wedding. They include detailed lists of wedding venues and suppliers. You can search for a venue by type and location and other filters depending on the wedding directory you use.
Venue Website & Social Media
You can learn a huge amount about the feel, mood, food, and suppliers associated with a wedding venue by looking at the venue’s social media such as Facebook, Instagram and even LinkedIn. You’ll be able to view images of the venue and food and drink presentation, menus, and real-life weddings.
A venue’s website also gives a great insight into the wedding services offered by a venue and of course, you can request a brochure or a call back to find out specific information before you take the plunge and book a viewing for a handful of your favourite venues.
Sign up to newsletters and subscribe to social media accounts for venues you are interested in to get notified of any special offers they may have. If you’re on a tighter budget, you’ll often find better deals if you opt for a winter wedding.
The venue brochure (be it hard copy or digital) should give you information around menus and prices. If in doubt or unclear about anything especially in relation to budget, call the venue and discuss the finer details with a member of the wedding team – it’s often easiest to talk about menu options and money on the phone or in person.
Book a Viewing
Ultimately, the only way to really know if a venue if the right one for you, is to book a viewing (often called a show round). Don’t forget to take your partner with you! The show round should be conducted by someone who has a good knowledge of how a wedding day works at the venue, of pricing and packages, menus, and they should have access to available dates in case you want to book your date there and then (as is often the case).
Venues will be happy for you to return with close family members and bridesmaids, etc – your wedding venue should be inviting and accommodating of your requests (within reason).