Sunday, June 7, 2009

Day 7: The Art of Negotiation: Wedding Venues

Day 7: 30 Days: A Guide to Stress Free Wedding Planning

After all your hard work and research, you've picked a few venues that fit the bill for your wedding. Perhaps you've already narrowed it down to the most fantastic place for your wedding. How do you go about negotiating with the venue to ensure that you are getting the best pricing and deal for you? Firstly, ask. Even if its the most outrageous request in the world, just ask. The worst that can happen is the venue says no. If that happens, ask for something else. Aim to be reasonable though in your request (i.e. if its $195 per person for Food + Top Shelf open bar, don't say, our budget only allows for $50 per person. Rather, ask where you can trim off the menu + bar to bring costs down). Go into your negotiations with a game plan. What are your must haves (top shelf, lobster, outside cocktails, whatever it is) and work around your must haves with things you care less for (bathroom attendants etc). Once you've gotten a contract that you can live with, take time to read the contract that the venue provides (this is applicable to all vendors), the contract spells out the can do's and the cannot do's of the place and any other requirements that you must be aware of. You want to make sure you are comfortable with the venue's policies. If you don't understand any clause or term, just ask. I read contracts all the time and still ask lots of questions when I don't understand anything. You won't know until you ask. When you eventually sign the venue's contract, you want to be 100% aware of everything related to that location.

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