15 Dec How to Book Your Wedding Date & Tips for Brides to Navigate the Process
Just engaged? Congratulations! Now it’s time to navigate that tricky process of choosing the perfect date for your nuptials. There are many factors to consider before deciding on a date, but with these simple tips, you will get it all settled in no time.
Choose the Season
A perfect way to decide on a date is to consider the season in which you want to get married. Love the rich palette of the changing leaves, apple picking and football? Choose a date in autumn. More a fan of the beach, sun and warmer weather? Get married in the summer months. Always dreamed of riding in a sleigh through the snow and adore the end-of-the-year holiday season? A winter wonderland wedding should be your choice. Are you enthralled with lush greenery and blooming flowers? Pick a springtime date.
Additionally, think about whether you hate the heat or the cold as well as the potential for natural weather patterns like a rainy season, blizzards or hurricanes based on your location. By compartmentalizing the year into four distinct time periods and considering your preferences, you can zero in on the perfect time of year to get married.
Dates of Significance
When was your first date? How about the first time you said “I love you”? When is your parents’ or grandparents’ anniversary? Some couples like to focus on dates of significance when picking their wedding day. Getting married on the anniversary of your first kiss, engagement or some other important event can be an easy—and symbolic—way to pick your special date.
Exchanging vows on a holiday is a matter of personal preference. Some people like to select long holiday weekends because it allows guests to have extra time to travel. It also enables couples to take advantage of special pricing on a Sunday.
Perhaps you fancy the idea of choosing an extra-festive holiday like St. Patrick’s Day, Valentine’s Day, the Fourth of July or New Year’s Eve for your wedding. Keep in mind, however, that some dates have premium pricing because of competition and will book early. Additionally, respect that your guests might not want to be away from their own families on holidays of significance.
Also keep in mind any notable events in your area that might occur on and around your chosen wedding date. Is your city hosting the Super Bowl, a major convention or the annual spring arts festival? Hotel rooms, air travel and venues could be pricier and streets could be closed.
While we don’t suggest that you ask everyone on your guest list if they can be available on a date you’re considering, you absolutely want to make sure the most important people in your lives won’t have a conflict. At the top of the VIP list should be your parents, siblings, grandparents and anticipated wedding party. Of course, the most important people in the equation are the engaged couple. Know that you are always swamped at work in September or that your job doesn’t allow vacations during a particular time period? Stay clear of those dates.
Don’t wait too long to start contacting venues. After taking all of the other tips into account, make a list of the places where you envision your ceremony and reception and start making those calls. Date availability and pricing will vary depending on the time of year, day of the week and other factors like holidays. If you are planning your ceremony and reception for different locations, remember to ensure availability at both venues before booking.
Ask the venues if they have any dates available in the short term, too. While next June might not be available, perhaps this June is because of a cancellation. It never hurts to ask. Even though you assume a date will be booked already, it actually could be available.
If you prefer a shorter engagement, also consider looking at newer venues. Tried-and-true venues book up well in advance, but newer locations will have many more dates open in the short term simply because couples haven’t booked them a year in advance. Here at Robert Ryan Catering & Design, we have recently opened the historic Philander Chase Knox Estate in Valley Forge National Park—a perfect setting for a wedding any time of the year.
Ready to start planning your party? Schedule a consultation with one of our event managers today!
Robert Ryan Catering & Design plans and executes over 400 events each year, boasts a five-star rating on WeddingWire and has received WeddingWire’s Couple’s Choice/Bride’s Choice Award seven years in row. Learn more about Robert Ryan Catering & Design and tour our venues. Subscribe to our e-newsletter for exclusive offers, up-to-date news and recipes from our executive chef.