The Allure of a Marquee wedding is undeniable. Marquee weddings are unique, they can take place in a special location, allowing for full personalisation and a truly individual day for the couple to celebrate their wedding. However, it’s a common misconception that marquee weddings are a more cost-effective venue solution compared to traditional options like hotels or exclusive event spaces.
Not only does a marquee wedding require more organisation and logistics taking up more of your time, but there are a number of additional costs that must be considered which are naturally included at a traditional wedding venue. These include:
- Furniture & Rentals
- Catering & Bar
- Decor & Styling
The Initial Investment
While the idea of a blank canvas allows for endless possibilities in terms of decor and customisation, it also comes with a price. Renting a marquee, along with the necessary flooring, lighting, and other structural elements, can amount to a significant upfront cost. Couples might be initially drawn to the flexibility a marquee provides while anticipating the true cost that comes with creating an entire event space from scratch. Recommended marquee companies are MJM Marquees , LPM Bohemia, and Pavillion Marquees.
Setting up a marquee requires more than just the structure itself. There’s the flooring including a dancefloor, lighting, and other essential elements such as toilets that need meticulous planning and execution. Time must also be factored in. Set up a marquee is very labour intensive and can take up to 3 days. In order for a seamless setup, professionals are often needed.
Unlike established venues that often include tables and chairs, a marquee wedding demands a complete furnishing setup. From seating arrangements to decorative tables, each piece contributes to the overall ambiance. Most marquee companies will offer furniture as with your package.
Food cost is not the only cost of a marquee wedding. While a marquee allows for freedom in choosing catering services, this liberty comes with its own set of costs and organisations. Caterers will require an additional catering tent at the back of your marquee in which they will set up a complete kitchen. Equipment such as cookers, and fridges will need to be hired along with crockery serving ware. Kitchen setup within a marquee is a large logistical and labour-intensive job.
Creating a bar in a marquee involves more than just stocking up on your favourite beverages. There are a few ways to manage the bar at your marquee wedding which will impact the setup and overall cost. You could do an open bar in which you supply the alcohol and hire a barman to serve. Another option is to check in with your local or favourite pub if they would be interested in running the bar for you for the night. Alternatively, catering companies often have the additional option to add on bar services. The setup, licensing, and staffing all contribute to the cost of ensuring your guests have a memorable and enjoyable experience.
Generators and toilets, though not glamorous, are essential for guest safety, well-being, and enjoyment. Hiring a generator and an electrician for wiring is crucial for powering lighting, the kitchen, music, and other electrical needs. Heat or Air Conditioning will also need to be considered depending on the location and time of year of your marquee wedding. Portable toilets are a necessity, offering a range of options far superior to festival toilets.
Decor & Styling
Marquees are a blank canvas which is an incredible base to create your dream wedding aesthetic. However, this comes at a cost. This cost varies depending on your desired look and feel for your day. Items include table linen, candleholders, draping, lights, and more. The list of wedding styling and decor accessories truly is endless.
Each of these additional costs also includes additional communication with a wide network of suppliers.
Managing Logistics and Coordination
Marquee weddings require extensive logistics and coordination with various vendors and suppliers. Especially on the day, a lot of management is required to align all the elements and coordinate staff. This is why we advise couples to work with a wedding planner. A wedding planner takes care of all the organisations in the lead-up and on the day, ensuring the couple and all the guests enjoy the wedding!
While marquee weddings may not be cheaper versus a traditional wedding venue, marquee weddings are incredible! They are truly unique and personal to the couple.
Are you ready to plan your dream marquee wedding?
If you have any further questions or need help with it all, let’s chat. I am an Irish wedding planner and stylist who loves joining couples on their adventures and planning to perfection.
Check out this recent marquee wedding we planned and styled here.