All You Need To Know Before Choosing A Venue For Your Nigerian Wedding
As a wedding planner, I have come to believe that Wedding planning starts officially from the moment a hall or venue has been secured.
Everything sort of gets real after the hall has been booked. And it is only by securing a venue, that all other things falls into place. A lot of things are dependent on securing the venue first.
Many brides get carried away with the beauty if a hall or the price of a hall than to be bothered about the real issues.
So this article will help potential Nigerian bride’s know what to expect from a wedding venue in Nigeria.
The general things to know before going to check out a venue.
General things to know before checking out wedding venues in Nigeria
1. A 500 capacity hall, does not mean that the hall can sit 500 guests.
When the hall manager tells you that their space can sit 500 guests, what they mean most of the time is that their hall can sit 500 theatre style. (Only chairs with no tables)
What this mean is that their banquet style will sit about 400 guests and that’s the actual capacity of their hall.
Also be aware of the covid restriction rules at the moment. A 1000 capacity hall may only be able to sit 500 in light of the pandemic.
2. The number of banquet tables a hall has is directly proportional to the actual number of guests their hall can sit comfortably.
Note: An average round banquet table sits 10 guests and 12 chairs if the chairs are smaller like chiavari chairs. The extremely big banquet tables sit 12 guests. Some halls also have rectangular tables, please be sure to ask which type they have.
For example, if they tell you that their hall can sit 500 guests for instance but when asking the relevant questions, you get to find out that they have 40 banquet tables that sit 10 guests, best believe that that’s the actual number of guests that their space can take.
3. Don’t believe if a hall manager tells you that they would fix a particular issue you are not comfortable with before your wedding date… say the restrooms for instance.
Most times, it is usually a lie and you are not the only one who has complained about the same issue and nothing has been done.
4. Please check reviews online, Google my business is a nice place to start or ogavenue.com… for some reason, many customers seem to leave reviews on Event Centres on these sites.
5. Ask all important questions. You don’t want any unpleasant surprises and trust me, Nigerian hall managers are full of these unpleasant surprises.
6. Do not assume that because you have paid for the hall, you are entitled to your event being powered with electricity for the whole time you would be using the hall.
For most halls, the average number of electricity hours you are entitled to is 8 hours and additional hours comes at an extra cost and this cost ranges from N30,000 to N150,000 (Naira) per hour.
7. There are two major parts of Lagos. The mainland and the island. It is generally believed that Event centres on the Island are more expensive than the Event Centres on the mainland.
8. Not all Event centres come with tables and chairs. So do not assume that because you saw some chairs in the hall at the time you made the enquiry, that the chairs and tables belong to them.
9. After paying the full price of the hall, don’t be surprised if you still have to pay for one or two things… like vendor’s tables, canopies, payment for cleaners etc.
10. Not all venues will allow you to bring in your food and drinks vendors. You may have to use their in-house food vendors or pay a corkage fee to bring in yours.
Related: 33 questions to ask when picking the perfect venue for your wedding
Note: In cases where you do not want to pay a corkage fee, understand that you would be paying a really high amount for these things. For instance, catering per head may cost N3,000 ordinarily, but you may end up paying about N12,000 per head.
The corkage fee is normally about 50% of the full price of the hall.
11. Nigerian vendors may charge you based on location and type of hall.
If it is general knowledge that a particular event centre is expensive, don’t be surprised if the decorator is charging you a fortune to decorate the space, because it will be believed that if the couple can afford a space like that, then they must be loaded financially.
12. Different states in Nigeria have different rules and regulations for their hall. Don’t assume that because you know about Lagos event centre terms, that the same applies in all 36 states that Nigerian comprises of.
13. Some halls won’t allow you play circular music, especially if they are religious halls.
I hope this helps. Good Luck!
You can also read: How To Prevent Nigerian Wedding Vendors From Disappointing You.