Wedding Planning Articles

Choosing your Wedding Reception Venue

Published by TheWeddingSite.com - All about getting married in Malta

choosing your wedding venue

He proposed, you said Yes and the countdown now begins!  One of the first services you will book for your wedding is the venue.  This, along with the catering, is one that will take up a good chunk of your wedding budget.  Thus, choosing wisely is crucial!  Below is a list of the top 10 things you should consider before booking your wedding venue in Malta.


1.Budget

First of all, you have to decide on your budget. It is a waste of time dreaming about a two-thousand euro (or more) wedding venue, if you are running on a restricted budget!   Your budget will determine the venue to be considered.  Apart from the rental rate, check whether any other fees apply such as overtime fees.  Choose a venue that you can really afford – you do not want to spend half of your overall budget towards just the booking of the venue.

2. Style

Is the venue suitable for the style of your wedding?  Do you prefer an indoor or an outdoor wedding reception?  If you will be opting for an outdoor wedding, can the indoor area accommodate all the guests in case of bad weather? Is the indoor area air-conditioned? The Summer months in Malta tend to be quite warm indeed!

3. Guest Count

Can the venue accommodate all your guests comfortably?  Do not make the mistake of inviting five hundred guests to a venue that accommodates only three hundred. On the other hand you do not want to book a large venue for a small number of guests.

Are there enough chairs for those who might, at times, want to sit down? Some venues have a very limited number of chairs available.  You do not want to have everyone seated, but keep in mind the elderly.   Does the provision of extra chairs come at an additional fee?

4. Catering

Does the venue have contracted caterers or can you make your own arrangements?  If it has contracted caterers, be sure to obtain a number of other quotations to determine if what they are offering you is indeed of good value or not.

5. Exclusivity

Is the chosen date reserved exclusively for your wedding or is there a chance that there will be two, or more, weddings on the same premises at the same time?  This is especially true with hotels having several venues and suites available.

6. Distance and Traffic Considerations

Try to find a venue which is not too far away from the church. This might seem to be an immaterial factor, but reducing the time spent travelling and driving in traffic, will be well appreciated by your guests.  It will also leave more time for you and your guests to enjoy the wedding.  In an effort to minimize traffic jams try as much as possible to avoid being on the road on a weekday at around 5 to 6pm.

7. Parking

Consider what parking availability comes along with the venue.  Would you be provided with a number of complimentary parking permits for you and maybe a number of guests?  What are the parking fees?  Is the parking area safe?

8. Music

Does the location have a sound system or should your musicians/dj/band make their own provisions? Are there any fees to use the venue’s sound system?  Till what time is music permitted?

9. Accessibility

Is the location entrance accessible to you, your guests and other vendors such as the florist, photographer, caterer etc…?

If any of your guests are wheel chair users, make sure the venue is easily accessible for them too.

10. Backup Power

You may not think it will happen, but it did!  What if there is a power failure during your wedding?  Is the venue equipped with generators and are they regularly serviced? Are there emergency lights on site in case of a blackout?

 

Whilst the above points are a very good starting point, there are other things you need to discuss with the venue management.  These include payment arrangements, damages and insurance liability, restroom facilities, etc.

Try to find time to visit the venue round about the same time at which your wedding will be held. If you are having an evening wedding, it is important to see how the venue looks in the evening giving special attention to the way it is lit up.  You might need to hire a third party contractor to create the mood you are after.

As with any other service, make sure you have everything in writing.  This way you will be sure there are no misunderstandings between you and your vendor. Always ask when in doubt and take nothing for granted!



Wedding Planning Articles

Choosing your Wedding Photographer

Published by TheWeddingSite.com - All about getting married in Malta

choosing your wedding photographer

Apart from memories, your wedding photography and video will be what is left as a memento of one of the most important days of your life.  Thus choosing the right photographer for your event is of utmost importance.  The following are some points you should consider when choosing your photographer and videographer.

 

Make sure you review his/her portfolio; a real wedding album of another client would be best.  What style does he specialise in? Is it formal, photo-journalistic, etc. and is it what you are looking for?

Check in detail the photography / video packages available and whether they include service at the groom’s and the bride’s homes prior to the ceremony.

Is a pre-wedding and/or post-wedding included?

prewedding

Will you be able to design your own custom package?

Will you be able to provide a list of photo must-haves? What about group photos?

What is the charging structure?  Is it a fixed fee, an hourly rate or rather a rate per photo? What are the applicable overtime fees?

Is there a minimum number of photos you will be obliged to purchase?

Will you be bound to purchase all the extra photos which are shot, apart from the selected ones?

Will you be involved in the choice of your photographs?

How much do reprints and enlargements cost? What finishes are available (canvas, glass, etc.)?

Will you be provided with digital prints or low resolution files for prior viewing of your photos, and when to expect these to be available?

Is digital editing/enhancement of photos included?  What about digital manipulation?

It is important to note that Digital Manipulation is different from Digital Editing. An example of digital editing could be the enhancement of the colours of the photo, whilst digital manipulation could be the removal of a blemish from a face.

Are high resolution photos provided on DVD and at what fee?

If you will be opting for a traditional album, check whether you will be bound to purchase the album from your photographer or whether you will be free to bring your own. Is the fixing of photos in the album included?

photography

Will the Wedding Video be provided on a standard DVD, Blue Ray or any other format? Do you need any special equipment to be able to watch it?

How will it be recorded; HD, Ultra 4K, etc.?

How many copies will be provided and in which format? Ensure that copies will be in a format that can be viewed by the intended recipients, such as parents.

When should you expect to have the final album / video ready?

Will any of your photos and/or video be put on display in the shop, weddings fair or other events? Whilst many couples have no objection around this, it could well be that others, might feel uncomfortable.

How much is the deposit?  When is the remaining balance due?

Will he personally photograph / film your wedding or will he send an employee or a freelancer? If this is the case can you see his work and ideally set up a meeting with him?

How many persons will be present? You need to know this detail since it is ethical to provide meals to your wedding day vendors who will be present at your reception such as the photographer and videographer.  Keep in mind that they will not have the ability to leave your reception and get a take-away!

What is his backup strategy just in case he would not be able to make it on the day due to illness or any other unforeseen circumstances?

 

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Wedding Planning Articles

Choosing your Wedding Reception Musicians

Published by TheWeddingSite.com - All about getting married in Malta

choosing your wedding musicians

Music is one of the most important services in a wedding reception and must be selected very carefully. As with all other wedding requirements, the sooner you make the arrangements, the better your chances of actually booking your preferred musicians and/or singer.


Budget

Whilst staying within budget is important, you should not skimp on your wedding musical services.  Music will determine the mood of your wedding reception and it will also determine whether your guests will enjoy your wedding or not.

Reception music fees are greatly influenced by the number of performers, the time of year as well as the time of day.  For obvious reasons, a piano player,  DJ or any other one-piece band will most probably cost much less than a four piece band.

Keep in mind the size of the band vis-à-vis the size of the reception venue. If your reception venue is a very small hall do not opt for a six-piece band.  If the venue is a large outdoor area make sure that the equipment will be set in such a way that music will be heard from all the different areas.

choosing_musicians_dance
Sound Volume

Make sure that the music is not be too overpowering in a way that makes it difficult for guests to have a conversation.

Check the time at which the music volume has to be lowered or even completely switched off.  Generally, in Malta this would be at around 11:00pm for evening weddings and from 1:00pm to 3:00pm for afternoon weddings.  The reception venue might however, have a different policy.  Thus, it is important that this point is confirmed with the venue management. It might be for example that a particular venue might not permit a DJ to perform at all.


Music Genres

The music should compliment your special event, the venue and the invitees.  For example, a DJ in a Victorian style venue filled with VIPs does not quite fit!   Make sure that you match your music with your wedding.

If you want all guests of all age groups to entertain themselves at your wedding focus on variety. Ask your musician to play songs from different decades, ranging from the 60’s up to the current year. Most probably you have invited guests who are in their early twenties up to guests who are sixty years old and over.

wedding music

Check with your DJ or band leader about how much you want him to talk over music.  You may want him to only guide your guests at important moments such as the Cake Cutting, or you may want a lively wedding and opt to have the DJ talking continuously in an effort to encourage people to keep on dancing.

Expect live performers to take short breaks during the reception. Discuss with them the length of recorded background music to be played. You should also check if the musician will be playing for a fixed number of hours, or till the very end of the reception.  Will there be any additional overtime fees involved?

Discuss your expectations and ensure that they are smartly dressed.


Music Selection

Enlist a few song titles that you would like your musicians to play.  You do not need to give them a full repertoire; you will only need to point out the ones which have a particular meaning to you.  Most importantly you should indicate the ones to be played during your entrance and your first dance.  Leave the rest up to them as long as you agree on the style to be played.

 

Finally, if you feel that the musician is not responsive to your requirements during consultation, keep searching!