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How to Coordinate your Wedding Guest Entry and Wedding Parking. Wedding Parking Strategies. How to Organize Wedding Parking. Parking Lots. Wedding PlanningGuest Entry is crucial to wedding day success because it is your guest’s first experience on your Big Day. Your venue is decided, your guest list is nearly finished. It is time to think through and coordinate how your wedding guests will actually enter your wedding and that venue.  It is their first impression, their first experience and the kick start to your wedding.

Guest Entry also plays a huge role in your wedding day timeline, as we all know, we can’t start until the guests arrive and efficiently find their seats. You want this to be just as thought out as every other detail you’ve meticulously planned…. because hey? Who wants grumpy guests?

How to Coordinate Guest Entry

You’re going to send out invitations that will undoubtedly excite a huge lot of people, whom will then come cascading into your venue on your wedding day. That said, there are few things that should be addressed and a few tips to make this whole process a bit easier. Yes, a Guest Entry into your wedding is a process and a Project! There is a bit more to it than sending out invitations and everyone shows up, including…

  1. Driving Signage
  2. Parking
  3. Shuttles

Driving Signage

If you haven’t ever driven out to your venue using the most common phone app for directions you should. Even if you know how to get to your venue, just try plugging it into Google Maps the next time you go out there. Follow it step by step and make sure it gets you there correctly. Most of your wedding guests will likely put the venue address on their phone and drive out there, so you should do a test run to make sure there are no crazy back road routes. The driveway to many family farms may also not be exact on Gmaps… many time you’ll get the “You have arrived” notification in the middle of a field, and not the actual driveway. At that location, you’ll want to place a “Keep Going” sign for your guests.

Where to put signage

  1. Is the driveway right around a blind corner?
  2. Is there a LONG drive between the next turns where a guest could think, “Did we miss it?” and you should put a “keep going” sign?
  3. Is it a Farm, Ranch or large property where Google Maps says, “You have arrived” and you’re at the corner of a fence line with no driveway in sight?
  4. Are there multiple driveways to choose from once Google says, “You have arrived” that aren’t clearly marked?

All these things I’m sure you have already memorized or are prepared for because you’ve either been there before or you are familiar with the home.


Want to get super DIY? Check out this post for how to make rustic signs from fellow blogger Katie at A Handcrafted Wedding


For many guests, it will be their first time. Put yourself in their shoes and highlight every potential hiccup they could face. They will probably be running late and their phone won’t have service to call you if they get lost on their way to a secluded farm in the country.Save yourself from a late start time and prepare guests ahead of time by scouting the directions.

Driving Cards & Maps

You can add in a little Driving Card to your invitations that have simple directions once they are within a few miles or so if there are a lot of turns, etc. It can also include parking instructions. Signage you might want or need: Wedding with an arrow, John & Jane Wedding, Doe Wedding, Keep Going, Parking, etc.

Parking

When guests come into the driveway of your venue parking may be obvious so you’re off the hook for this assignment, BUT if you’re getting married at a private home and parking everyone in a field… this one’s for you!



Individual Lot Spots

This is totally a great Groom job! Grooms are often left out of most planning decisions {I have had some totally awesome involved guys in my history of helping couples and a groom with an opinion and willingness to make decisions is always welcome in my office} If you’re parking everybody in a field you might need to take a few precautions and preventative steps to avoid some common issues I’ve come across:
  1. Make a diagram and post it by the field gate so drivers know the expectations: Nose into the fence, at an angle, yadda yadda. Grooms can figure out the math on how many cards you think you can fit in the field straight in or angled in. Then show people how to park in the middle of the field so that everyone along the fence can still get out!
  2. Mark out spaces with paint or tape: That nylon tape can be used to mark off a NO PARKING zone or even the middle “curb” to nose up to down the middle of the field.
  3. Hire Valet: And by that I mean bribe some of your 15-year-old nephews to park cars
MAJOR REMINDER: If the cars are being parked ANYWHERE near where the ceremony and reception are taking place tape off the cut-off line so that NO cars are parked within picture taking sight! Especially over the ceremony.
Critically evaluate the parking situation and make a game plan implementing the criteria above. DO NOT just plan to have a field be a free for all! Guests will get blocked in but other guests, cars will be parked too far from each other since nobody wants a door ding or they just flew into the spot not really thinking. Soon you will have a full lot of only 50 cars when you needed it to fit 75! People won’t cram their cars in themselves, you’ll need to force gently guide them.

Shuttles

Sometimes the best place to park everyone is a public parking lot {usually a middle school for some reason} and then have everyone bused or driven in a passenger van out to the venue. There are both pros and cons to this system.
Pro: You can have a secluded wedding venue and not have to worry about parking. The public lot will be well lit and easy to find.  People can come straight from a hotel they are staying in if there is a “wedding” hotel block. This system helps to eliminate drunk driving.
Con: When your guests want to leave they have to wait for a shuttle to arrive. As shuttles do start running at the end of the night your reception sort of dies down with large groups leaving at once. People sometimes get stuck.  It is one more thing you have to pay for.
I am sure there are many more pros and cons but let’s just leave it there for now….

Here are some other resources:

Salem Limo Service & Party Bus– Salem, OR

NightlifeParty Bus – Salem, OR

My Party Bus – Eugene, OR

Eugene Hybrid Taxis –Eugene, OR

PINK Taxi Oregon – Eugene, OR


3 Guests who need Wedding Parking Lot Accommodations. Wedding Parking. How to plan a wedding Parking lot. Build a parking lot. Wedding Guests How to plan a wedding. Wedding Tips. Wedding Guests Parking lotSupplementary Reading: 3 Guests who need Wedding Parking Lot Accommodations



Previous Assignment: Project Block 0: Bridal Dressing Rooms

Next Assignment: Project Block 2: Welcome Tables


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This post is Supplementary to The Project Block System, The only Step by Step Wedding Planning System you need to plan your own wedding. We’d love for you to enroll!

Hi there! I’m Kandice, Owner of Green-Eyed Girl Productions and engineer of The Project Block System. Thank you so much for stopping in on this blog post!

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Happy Planning!


Post Image Credit(s) Alyssa Armstrong Photography ~ Ann Nunn Photography ~Green-Eyed Girl Event Team

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