Wedding Day Checklist: Etiquette for Wedding Facilities

Birchwoods Banquet FacilityThere is a wide array of wedding etiquette, from who to invite to the responsibilities of the best man and maid of honor. But wedding etiquette issues can also be applied to the wedding facility where the reception will take place, from how it is booked to policies regarding alcohol at the event. Here are some tips on etiquette for wedding facilities:

  • The facility should be booked well in advance of the wedding day. It's a good idea to book the facility up to a year in advance, because it may already be booked, especially if the wedding occurs during the most popular summer and fall Birchwoods .
  • Contact the facility director. The facility director is the go-to person for the event and will assist you throughout the special day. Make sure you know his responsibilities and whether he will be attending the reception.
  • Will the wedding facility provide shuttle transportation from the ceremony to the reception? If the facility does not make shuttles available, rent your own.
  • What time will guests arrive and leave the wedding facility? Understanding the timeline of the day is more efficient, and facilities can charge fees for overstaying.
  • How to arrange wedding seating. Some wedding facilities lend themselves to having a bridal party table and some have raised platforms that will give the bride and groom a better view of the reception. You may want your groomsmen to act as ushers, which may affect where you seat them.
  • Is there a service charge on top of the bill for food and beverages? Ask the facility director what the policy is on tipping the service and bar staff.
  • Must you use the wedding facility's vendors? If you have your own caterer and florist, you may have to pay a fee to the facility for using them.
  • Will there be a hosted bar or a cash bar? Most wedding receptions feature hosted bars, but you don't need to offer top-shelf liquor. You can offer beer and wine and a signature cocktail and ask guests to pay for more expensive drinks. If you must have a cash bar, negotiate drink specials with the wedding facility.
  • Is there a corkage fee if you bring your own wine? Supplying the wine can save you money, although there may be a per bottle corkage fee, which may still save you money over the wedding facility's wines.
  • Who is responsible for setting up and tearing down the décor? Wedding facilities will normally cover this for a fee, but make sure you know how the wedding set will be arranged.
  • How early should you get to the wedding facility to set up? Wedding facilities generally allow ample time for set up, but if the reception will be held in a museum or theater, set up may not be permitted until the hours of operation are over.
  • Are there restrictions for photographers? If flashing camera lights are prohibited in certain locations at your wedding facility, you might want to think about another location.
  • Are there any additional costs? You may have to pay the wedding facility for cleaning fees, so get it all in writing before you sign the contract.

As you can see, there are many wedding etiquette issues that pertain to wedding facilities. Make sure you've checked with the facility you will use to iron out the details so your wedding is a big success.