Venue Tips


When it comes to picking a venue many couples don’t ask questions about photography and the venue's rules until it's to late. Below are the pros and cons of different venue types and the questions you should be asking.

Country Clubs

Pros: Beautiful backdrops, clubhouse is typically very nice and clean. Usually have nice lakes and trees that make for beautiful images.

Cons: Typically strict rules on golf course photography, getting ready location usually in a locker room with bad light and no windows.

Questions you should ask!

Where can I go for pictures and where can’t I go? Many couples choose a country club for the beautiful golf course to later find out on their wedding day that the course is completely off limits to photography. Ask the event coordinator to physically show you were photos can be taken.

Can you and the photographers use a golf cart to drive to great picture locations? Golf courses are huge and spread out and if the lake you’d love to have pictures in front of is across the property you’ll need a cart to get there.

Do you offer anywhere to get ready other than a windowless locker room? If the answer is no then you might want to consider getting ready offsite.

What is the earliest I can show up to get ready? Many times this is only a couple hours before your ceremony time which might require you to get ready off site.

Hotels

Pros: Experienced wedding staff, large and accommodating ballrooms, getting ready, ceremony, and reception in one place. Large bridal suite sometimes offered.

Cons: Might not have great or private portrait locations on premises, could have expensive vendor parking, guests might get in the way of pictures.

Questions you should ask!

How much does it cost for my vendors to park? Many vendors require the couple to pay all additional fees like parking. Some hotels charge up to $40 for vendors to park. This can get very expensive for the couple considering you will have many vendors at your wedding.

Do you offer a bridal suite? Bridal suites are typically larger rooms with big windows, mirrors, and overall nicer looking for photography.

How many weddings will you book on the same day? If multiple weddings are taking place at the same time there could be an issue with each wedding party trying to take pictures in the same locations.

Churches/ Synagogues / Temples/ Mosques

Pros: Typically large beautiful venues, nice surrounding grounds.

Cons: Usually very strict photography rules, tricky lighting, limited photography angles due to venue rules, limited photography time after ceremony.

Questions to ask!

What are the photography rules? Where will the photographers be able to go during the ceremony? Many times your ceremony pictures are compromised because of movement limitations for the photographers. Many venues will understand and work with you in terms of their rules if you make sure to address them before your wedding day.

How long will I be able to have pictures taken after the ceremony? The answer can sometimes be 15 minutes to an hour depending on the venue. If you want to take family photos at the venue but only have 15 minutes this won’t be possible.

Private Residences

Pros: Typically the least strict on photography, getting ready, ceremony, and reception at same location, usually have the entire venue to yourself.

Cons: If the grounds are smaller it might be hard to get away from guests during portrait time.

Questions to ask!

When can I show up to start getting ready? Sometimes there might be time limits.

What is the lighting like at night? There might be no existing light or very little lighting for your reception if outdoors.

Is there a noise ordinance? If in a residential area the reception might need to end at 10pm or earlier.