The Ugly Truth About Having A Wedding With Multiple Locations

Video Transcript

Hi, my name is Dalton Young, destination wedding videographer and photographer, and I want to talk really quickly about traveling between multiple locations and parking. Okay? This probably should be two separate videos, but I’m going to start talking about both of them. So with a wedding, some brides have it all in one location, which I think is a phenomenal idea. It’s a preferred idea for your vendors because we get to show up in one spot and stay in one spot, especially video, and we don’t have to pack up all … We don’t have to break down everything, pick it up, move it to a whole different property on the other side of town. That’s huge for us, and you also get more coverage because you’re not wasting all this time driving around and then trying to find parking.

But if you have multiple locations, I just want to get at … When you have multiple locations, make sure you have enough time because people, your guests, are going to have to get out, and I’m primarily talking about people that are coming with kids, maybe it’s elderly people, maybe it’s grandparents, they’re going to have to … Whatever. Because here’s the thing, I love weddings that are all at one spot, but I’ve done several that have had four and five different locations, believe it or not. And when you do that and you only have X amount of hours of coverage, we get somewhere, we shoot for 30 minutes, and then we get in the car and we drive, we have to pack everything up, get back in the car, drive where we’re going, find parking, and then unpack everything, and then go to where it’s happening, and then set everything back up, right?

And when you have to do that four or five times, that’s a lot. That’s not only a lot of time for us to set up and more of a hassle for us to set up, but it’s also … It’s just very stressful for … It can be stressful for us, but it’s also can be stressful for your guests, right? And then there’s the whole concept of thinking about all the times that we’re driving, right? Especially if you’re somewhere that has high traffic like for example, we’re down here in the Destin, Florida area and during the summer it’s the tourist season and traffic can be a nightmare, so if we’re having to drive from here to there and it’s maybe 10 minutes, right? But in peak season, Google Maps or your directions may say 10 minutes, but it may be more like 20 weddings. Twenty weddings. Twenty minutes or 30 minutes, and that’s depending on if there’s a wreck or not. That could just be heavy traffic. What if there’s a wreck and you’re going between multiple locations, right?

I love the idea of multiple locations, but I also feel like you’re putting a lot of moving parts into your wedding day is already stressful and kind of complicated at times, and the last thing you want to do is add stress. You don’t want to add more moving parts than you need, okay? I understand if you have to have your ceremony somewhere and your reception somewhere else. That’s cool. And then if you’re doing prep at your house or a condo, and then someone else is doing it somewhere else, but next thing you know, you have four different locations, you’re worried about your vendors actually making it on time, because let’s say, you’re going to your reception, you’re ready for your entrance, and you make it there, but some of the guests and the DJ are stuck in traffic or the photographer gets stuck behind a car wreck, right? I mean, it holds the whole wedding up or things get missed, one of the two.

And these are sacrifices that you have to … Or sorry, risks you have to accept if you’re going to do that, and understanding to add enough time as a buffer, right? You may say, “Oh, it’s only 10 minutes away so yeah, we’ll make a 15-minute window.” Well, you got people … Like if I was a wedding guest, right? If I was your wedding guest, I would have to somehow get all my three kids together, go take them all the way to the vehicle, somebody’s going to want a sippy cup, somebody’s going to want food, and someone’s looking for their iPad, right? It’s one of those kinds of things. And I’m like, “Kids, we’re just going 10 minutes away.” But no, it takes time, right? We got to pack everything up. Then there’s a diaper change in the middle of it or something, or some kid spills juice. It’s one of those kinds of things, and you got to think about not everybody’s situation may be the same as yours.

You also on your wedding day, kind of get priority over everybody else. So you may get there, you may get in and out quicker than everybody else does, because when you have a … After a ceremony, you leave, you walk down the aisle, you leave to go to the next place sometimes. Well, if you have 200 or 300 guests behind you, it’s going to take them all a while to get in their cars. They’re going I’ll have to get out of the parking lot, and then they’re all going to have to get down there and then unpack, and the same thing again. So just be mindful of your guests. Be mindful to add extra time. If you’re going to have multiple locations, that’s fine. Make sure you have enough time because the last thing you want to do is be A. Waiting on people when people get out of the car and you’re rushing everybody to get in so you can start the next thing.

The other thing I wanted to talk about on multiple occasions like I said in the beginning, was parking. Parking is a big deal. This is the number one thing that I see that causes people to be late. You plan a wedding and is typically … I mean, if they have a big parking lot, that’s different. But if you’re like hey, we’re getting ready at the beach house and you have 10 bridesmaids and 10 groomsmen, okay? You’re getting ready at a beach house that only has two to four parking spots, and then everywhere on the road is no parking, right? And even if you’re in the driveway, you can’t park across the sidewalk because code enforcement will show up and tell you to move your vehicle or else they’re going to tow it because you’re blocking the sidewalk or you’re parking on the road or, and it’s a tow away zone.

You have to think about the parking because at that point if you’re all getting ready at different locations and then they all come to one place to get ready, you got a vehicle full of groomsmen, even if they carpool. Even if they carpool. Even if you have two big vehicles and you can fit … If you had 10 of each and you fit the groomsman into two vehicles and the bridesmaids into two vehicles, then you think about it. Your photographer is going to be in a vehicle, your videographer is going to be in a vehicle, anybody that’s hair and makeup, maybe two separate vehicles. And that’s provided you don’t have [inaudible 00:06:50] shooters that have to come in vehicles as well.

So think about the parking, especially during prep. That’s usually the worst. It’s usually when brides are getting ready or the grooms are getting ready if there’s not enough parking and that cuts into your time because if we can’t find parking, we cannot come in. We’re not going to park in the middle of the road and get our car towed. And it’s something that you have to be mindful of, not just for us. I’m talking about all of your guests. Having enough parking, especially during the prep is a big piece, but even during the ceremony and reception. Let’s say you’re having a … Especially if it’s in a public place if you’re having a beach ceremony at a kind of somewhat public beach and they have public parking, that may sound fantastic, but if you’re getting married in the middle of summer or you’re getting married on spring break or fall break or whatever, those parking lots fill up.

And when you bring an extra 100 guests, even if it’s 50 guests to a wedding, everybody’s got to be able to … I bit my lip. Ow. Everybody has got to be able to find parking, right? Everybody has to be able to find parking. If they cannot find parking, they cannot attend your wedding. They will miss your whole ceremony. Seen it happen many of times, especially when it’s a close family member like a parent, it’s hard to see them miss that, but the show has to go on where there’s … You’re on a timeline and the sun will set and your vendors will leave. Everything has to happen somewhat with the timeline, okay? And if there’s no parking, that creates a big conflict.

As well as it’s the same with your reception area. I’ve seen brides, especially if they have it at a restaurant down here in the Destin, Florida area, Panama City, Pensacola, or wherever. If they have at a restaurant, the restaurant gets crowded at dinner time, and then you’re bringing in 100, or 200 guests, and you have to think about it. Just because a venue or a … Or sorry, a venue or a restaurant says they can handle whatever the capacity is, they also have the mindset, especially down here, that many people are carpooling together because they’re on vacation together, right? Not everybody that comes to a wedding is vacationing together, so if you get to a parking lot and your vendor is having, for example, let’s say videography. We get there, we can’t find parking, and then you say, “Oh, that’s okay. There’s overflow parking. You go down about a block that way, and there’s an overflow parking. You can walk.”

Well, I ain’t got a problem with walking. We walk all the time, but here’s what happens, we have to unpack a bunch of gear and we have to take it all the way, and if we’re having to cross the road and stuff with gear, that becomes a major time setback, also as well as a major inconvenience and can affect again your coverage. This isn’t necessarily about us as much as it is about it affects your coverage. It affects our ability to provide you with the best service, because we’re not really set up for success, right? I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen brides have things missed because they have to have their vendors, whether that’s their photographer, videographer, or anybody else, to go move a car because they’re blocking someone in, whether it’s another vendor or a guest, or they’re parked across the sidewalk or they’re parked on the road and the cops show up and tell them they have to move their car. You don’t want to miss out, right?

Because if we’re there 30 minutes before prep, and as soon as we get there, we’re told we have to move our stuff and then go find parking a block away. Well, you’re not going to have coverage of your prep and that affects your whole film, so just think about it. Parking is very important. You want to make sure you have plenty of it and that the overflow parking isn’t too far away, right? Even if you have overflow parking for guests, what about your older guests, right? Or the guests that have three kids or five kids, or whatever that looks like. That’s a long way to walk, and not only can it be tiring, but it can also be stressful for them.

And again, if your whole wedding party or guests get kind of stressed out about the crowds or the parking or the traffic, it can affect your overall experience, whereas if you had, I’m not going to say have a barn wedding, but typically barn venues have plenty of parking and you show up, you’re there at the same place all day. It may not be four different locations, but you can get ready on-site, you can have the ceremony on-site, the reception on-site, and people can drink. Another thing to think about. If you’re serving alcohol, people that are drinking are going to be driving between multiple locations, especially on a wedding day. People will start drinking during prep sometimes. It just depends on who it is, but then you got these people getting on the road four different times and they may be drinking a lot because it’s a wedding day.

So just a lot of emotions going on and you want to try to control those emotions and by having less locations and by having an excellent amount of parking, that can make it a lot easier on people to deal with on your wedding day and make your guests happy, keep you happy. You don’t have to worry as much about people not showing up or getting stuck in traffic or actually getting in a wreck or not being able to drive because they drank too much. So things to think about. If you have any questions about your planning during the planning process, feel free to reach out to me. I’m happy to help you. Like I said, whether you choose to book with us or not, that’s irrelevant. I understand what it’s like planning a wedding and trying to figure out what’s right for you, and what’s the best fit for you.

So if you need any recommendations or just have questions, like I said again, whether you work with us or not, that’s not the point. I’m happy to help you however I can, and if you have any questions, feel free to reach out. Again, my name is Dalton Young and we will talk to you soon.

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Photography/VideographyDalton Young Weddings