How Not To Blow Your Budget On A Wedding Venue
By Darcy Allen /Melbourne Venue Expert
Tue 3rd Jan 2023 Wedding Venues
The Dream? Find the perfect wedding venue and stay within budget. Here’s how to keep your wedding venue budget in check without compromising your vision.
When planning a wedding, most couples quickly realise that the budget will be a challenge. Most likely, you’ve never actually planned a wedding, and don’t necessarily know what each component will cost. From finding the perfect dress to securing a great venue and creating an unforgettable event through the right blend of décor and catering, there’s no shortage of line items to consider.
However, the good news is that it doesn’t have to be this way. If you focus on maximising the value you get from your wedding venue, you can save a lot of money without sacrificing the quality of your event. How so? Simply, inclusions!
A wedding venue isn’t just a place to host your event — it’s a whole package of services. Paying attention to the inclusions offered by a wedding venue can help you save money on things like accommodation, parking, styling and décor, food and beverage packages, and more. These things all add up, and if the venue you choose includes a lot of components in its package, you can make your wedding budget much more manageable.
In this guide, we’ll go into more detail on how to make the most of a wedding venue package, with tips to help you save money while still getting all the bells and whistles you want for an unforgettable wedding celebration.
Wedding Venue Budget Tip No.1: Meticulously Check the Inclusions of Your Wedding Package
No two wedding packages are the same, and it’s important to make sure that you understand exactly what’s included in the venue hire agreement. Many venues will offer an all-inclusive package, including various extras such as catering, floral arrangements, decorations, rentals, and more. Others offer only a few inclusions, such as chairs, tables, and linens. Some venues don’t even include the most basic furniture, and it’s up to the couple to bring in hired items to fill the space.
In all cases, it’s wise to note exactly what’s included in your package and ask as many questions about the specifics before you book your venue. This way, you can avoid any surprise costs down the line and make sure that you have a true understanding of how much money you’ll have to allocate for other suppliers and services.
Here are a few examples of wedding venues with highly valuable inclusions.
Metropolis in Melbourne
Apart from the obvious (the venue hire itself), this stunning property offers a range of in-house amenities, from a spacious dance floor and a signing table with white linen and 2 chairs to high-quality audio-visual systems and classic black perspex lecterns and microphones.
On top of that, the venue also offers a range of quality rentals, such as fabric chairs and wall uplights, plus the services of an in-house audio-visual technician. That means seating, lighting, sound, and even your PA system, are all taken care of. You’ll likely want to add your own styling on top, but it’s a well-rounded start to build out your plans.
Zest Beachouse at Point Piper Sydney
The two waterfront venues at Zest Beachouse offer the perfect blend of waterfront luxury, modern styling, and convenience. From the classic white carpet to 30 crossback timber chairs for your ceremony, plus a custom-built dance floor and stage area with a projector and audiovisual equipment; all of these are included in the venue hire package.
A signing table with 2 chairs is also available, and you can have your ceremony an hour before your reception to give your guests time to explore the stunning grounds before joining you in celebrating your big day.
Waters Edge in Brisbane
For Brisbane wedding venues on a budget, get ready to be pleasantly surprised with the inclusions at Waters Edge. Not only does venue hire include the basics such as furniture, tableware, and decorations, but you also get luxurious extras such as arrival drinks and pre-dinner canapes on arrival.
What’s more? You also get a private balcony with river and city views to watch your ceremony from – plus a private area for the bridal party to get ready in peace, a dedicated gift table, a cake table with a cake knife, and a printed seating plan. They even provide themed lighting for your reception, so there are various personalised details throughout your wedding.
Wedding Venue Budget Tip No. 2: Check the Add-Ons Before You Commit
Along with making sure you’re aware of the inclusions, it’s also important to check out the add-ons. Many venues offer additional services or items that can be added on for an extra fee — think signature cocktails, champagne toasts, photo booths, styling services, and more.
Taking advantage of these options is a great way to customise your wedding and give it a unique stamp. Some of these add-ons might be more cost-effective than if you were to hire a separate vendor. Just make sure you double-check the fees and services before committing so you don’t run into any surprises.
Check out these splashy offerings to get a taste of what you can expect.
Marnong Estate in Melbourne
If catering is an issue of concern for you, Marnong Estate can put your mind at ease. This gorgeous venue offers a variety of add-ons, including classic sides and premium sides, late-night snacks, and food stations.
From a garden house salad to fried calamari and everything in between, there’s something to satisfy every palate. Plus, you can even upgrade your dining experience with interactive food stations (oyster and prawn – delish!) or a dessert bar for the sweet tooths in your guest list.
Ottimo House in Sydney
Ottimo House offers a range of additional services that are sure to make your wedding more special. Namely, their in-house stylist can help you create a unique theming option for your reception, ensuring that every moment of your wedding is perfect.
This includes selecting entertainment options like DJs, bands, magicians and dancers, comedians and emcees, pyrotechnics, and ice sculptures. Plus, they can also assist you with bomboniere, decor, and other accessories.
Gabbinbar Homestead in Brisbane
When it comes to add-ons, Gabbinbar Homestead has got you covered. From luxe seating to beautiful linens, you can truly make your wedding your own.
You also have the option of hiring a dedicated event coordinator for the day, which is great if you’re feeling overwhelmed or want someone else to handle all the details on the day. Plus, they offer an in-house audio-visual technician to help set up and run the lighting, sound system, and other equipment onsite.
GET INFO ON GABBINBAR HOMESTEAD
Wedding Venue Budget Tip No. 3: Consider a Wedding Venue Where You Can Host Both Ceremony and Reception in One Location
Lastly, consider booking a venue that allows you to host both your ceremony and reception in one spot. Not only will this save you money on transport costs, but it’ll also make the whole day much more convenient for your guests since they won’t have to worry about moving from one place to another.
Similarly, you’ll be able to save even more if your venue also allows for overnight accommodation. Many venues offer special discounts for couples who book a package that includes both ceremony and reception hosting as well as accommodation in the same place – so make sure to keep this option in mind while you shop around.
A very popular wedding venues that offers this special package is:
Sergeants’ Mess in Sydney
Far from being an actual mess, Sergeants’ Mess is a breathtakingly beautiful venue in Mosman. It overlooks the lush bushland of Sydney Harbour National Park, giving panoramic views of the harbour.
For your ceremony, choose from either a garden wedding on the manicured lawns of the venue – or opt for an elegant indoor affair in the stunning main dining room. Afterwards, your gorgeous reception will be hosted in one of two modern event spaces – each perfectly appointed to host your special day among native bushland, complete with delicious catering and all the necessary amenities.