How much does a wedding venue cost?

It’s time to start wedding planning! With the venue being the first vendor most couples book before their big day it’s good to get an idea of how much you can afford to spend.

Your wedding venue will usually be the largest spend in your wedding budget. So setting your budget early and knowing what you can spend on your venue straight up is so important to get your planning off on the right foot.

We’ve looked at what couples have budgeted for their wedding venue cost in the past to give you an idea of where to start budgeting for your wedding venue in 2020.


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How much should I spend?

Did you know that the wedding venue makes up 46% of the entire average wedding budget? We’ve found that couples want to focus on quality over quantity when it comes to their wedding venue. The number of guests you invite will directly impact how much you’re spending on your venue per head.

The average couple in 2020 will spend $15,258 on their wedding venue, and host 98 guests on their day. Based on this, the average cost of a wedding venue per head comes to $156.

Make sure you have a vague idea of how many people you want to invite when you start talking about your wedding venue cost per head.

New South Wales

If you’re planning a wedding in NSW then you should plan on spending a bit more than the national average. New South Wales is the most expensive state to get married in as a whole. Couples are generally spending $17,213 on their wedding venue. This equates to $176 per head, a 13% increase on the national average.

Victoria

The cost of a wedding venue in Victoria has decreased slightly since 2019. If you’re planning a wedding in Victoria you should estimate your wedding venue budget at around $160 per head, or $15,642.

Queensland

Queensland is a big state and the average cost of a wedding venue comes in at just $12,090, well below the national average. If you are getting married somewhere like Brisbane, this could increase to be a bit closer to the national average. The average cost per head of a wedding in Queensland is $132.

South Australia

The cost of a venue in South Australia has increased since 2019, but not by much. South Australians can expect to spend around $15,067 on their wedding venue. This is just 2% more than last year and still comes in under the national average. The average wedding venue cost per head is $154.

Western Australia

Our friends out west can expect to spend $13,039 on a wedding venue. This is around $133 per head and is actually a 7% drop since 2019.

Australian Capital Territory

Canberra and the ACT have experienced a jump in the average cost of a wedding venue, despite the average cost of a wedding remaining the same. However, this comes in as less of a jump than their neighbours in NSW at just 5%. The average cost of a wedding venue in the ACT is $13,012, or around $138 per head.

Tasmania

Our neighbours across the ditch have also experienced an increase in the overall cost of a wedding, as well as the cost of a wedding venue. However, this still comes in well below the national average with Tasmania being the most affordable state to hire a wedding venue. If you’re in Tassie you can expect to spend $128 per person on your venue, or $12,510.

What type of venue should I hire?

If you’re still working out how to choose your wedding venue then take a look at the most popular types of venues from couples in the past.

41% of all couples will hire a reception centre for their wedding venue, with reception centres often being able to host the ceremony and reception on the same grounds. Another 21% will hire a restaurant or hotel while 19% will go for a winery wedding.

13% of couples will then look at a historic site like a library or a museum for their big day with 6% hiring a golf club venue.

72% of couples will have a venue with a sit-down dinner reception while 28% of couples are opting for the most casual, cocktail reception vibe.

Think about the atmosphere you want for your big day when it comes to choosing your venue. Do you have a theme in mind that will be suited more to a particular style of venue? Or do you already know if you want a sit-down, cocktail or food truck reception to add to your atmosphere? These will all help you find what style of wedding venue will best suit your vision.

What should I look for in a good wedding venue?

It can be hard trying to work out what to look for in a venue when you’ve never planned a wedding before! This is why we find looking at what couples have done in the past such a good guide for newly engaged couples.

One thing that couples love when looking for their venue is a functions manager or coordinator who listens to all of their ideas. This makes couples feel like the venue really wants to help plan the day for them, especially when they help provide suggestions of what will or won’t work with what a couple wants.

Making sure all your cost inclusions and extras are clear from the initial enquiry or quote is also a big plus as it means you can budget accordingly for your other vendors down the track. Couples also like it when functions managers touch base to see if they have more questions or need more help, rather than just getting in touch when they need something.

Things to be wary of when looking at reviews are information not being passed on between coordinators. Function coordinators changing can be unavoidable, but making sure a venue has the processes in place to pass all your information on is a must. Previous couples were also wary when a venue tried to rush them through a meeting or when special areas weren’t sectioned off properly from other guests or visitors.

On the whole, wedding venues are one of the highest-ranked vendors for a wedding day. In fact, venues scored a massive 4.9 out of 5 stars for their customer service and couple happiness score in 2019! So we know you’ll be sure to find a venue who can make your day extra special, and fit into your budget.

Ready to find your perfect wedding venue? Browse venues in your area here!

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