Your wedding is a pretty big deal. Ok let’s be honest, it’s a HUGE deal! And deciding on a venue for the big day is one of the most important aspects to sort out. If you’re thinking about an outdoor celebration, you’re going to be getting up close and personal with wedding tents. You know, because weather likes to do its own unpredictable thing.
Sounds like buckets of fun, right?
While choosing a wedding tent may seem like a simple task, there’s a lot to factor into your decision, such as style, cost, size, and accessories.
We know you’ve got a lot on your shoulders already with the wedding, so we’re taking some of that weight off you. In this ultimate guide, we’ve covered all of the key considerations necessary for choosing a wedding tent for you. All you need to do is decide what’s best for you!
Wedding Tents – Key Considerations
A wedding tent can serve as a beautiful venue that complements your unique style, creates a comfy space for guests, and protects your party from the elements. Yay, to wedding tents!
There are, however, there are some things you need to know first before jumping on the wedding tent bandwagon. Let’s take a look at some of the key considerations shall we?
Do I Really Need a Wedding Tent?
If you have an outdoor reception, the answer is yes. Unless you have a giant hut at your disposal, of course.
Tent or hut though, you’re going to need some sort of cover from whatever nature throws at you on the big day, whether it be rain, hail, or heat. You spend a lot of time perfecting your special day. The last thing you need is a surprise downpour during your reception. Even if the weather leans in your favor, it’s always a good idea to have a tent for certain parts of the celebration, such as dinner.
If you’re weighing your options between an indoor venue and wedding tent, consider that searching for an indoor space that can accommodate your guest list, decor plans, and seating arrangements can be quite stressful.
A wedding tent is an excellent alternative to an indoor space because they come in various sizes to accommodate large parties. They also provide the same sense of comfort, while providing a more spacious atmosphere.
Plus, they offer up a blank white canvas, making it easy for you to bring your decor vision to life. No worries about ugly carpets or wood paneled walls that don’t match your taste.
Types of Wedding Tents
So you’ve decided you need a wedding tent, now what?
While there are many tent styles, the decision comes down to the two main types of tents:
- Pole tent
- frame tent
To choose between the two, you’ll need to assess your venue, space, decor, aesthetic, and ultimately your budget. Let’s take a closer look at the pros and cons of each.
The Pole Tent
The pole tent peaks into high canopy ceilings and forms the perfect organic space to complement your venue. It also allows for guests to easily maneuver in and out as needed.
While these tents may complement your surroundings, be sure your space is suitable for a pole tent. They typically require flat, grassy ground for the poles to stake into properly.
Since some of the poles will need to be staked at specific locations within the tent to maintain its stability, you’ll need to take your floor plan into account when setting up your furnishings.
- Canopy peaks allow for decorative lighting
- Easily move in and out of the tent ground
- Easy setup
- Must design floor plan with poles in mind
- Does not work on stone or concrete
The Frame Tent
The frame tent is the most versatile tent there is. Since the frame tent can set up virtually anywhere, you don’t have to sacrifice your perfect location for the tent’s stability.
Also, unlike the pole tent, frame tents don’t require any support poles within the structure. That means you can maximize your floorplan to your tent’s square footage.
However, with the frame tent’s stability and versatility comes a more complicated setup and break down. These tents require more heavy-duty equipment, which calls for a more labor-intensive construction and breakdown.
- Maximizes square footage
- Can be set up on most flat surfaces
- No height adjustments
- Difficult setup in some instances
What Size Tent Should I Get?
Bigger isn’t always better. So, before you secure the largest of the wedding tents for sale, as yourself some key questions:
- How many guests will you have?
- Will you have a seated dinner?
- Will you need a lot of square footage for the dance floor and DJ?
The answers to these questions and any other pertinent details will help guide the size decision.
While you want the space to be large enough for your guest list, you don’t want it to be too large. Too much space will make your seating arrangements look awkward. The same goes for getting a tent too small. You don’t want your guests to feel cramped in the space.
Even if you’ve only just begun planning, it’s smart to figure out a rough estimate of how many people you plan to invite and the general idea of how your wedding’s eventual set up so you can get quotes from various vendors early.
What Additional Items Will I Need to Complete My Tent Wedding?
Besides the size and type of tent you plan to rent or buy, you need to consider how you want to decorate and furnish it.
Depending on the type of tent you choose, you may need to figure out what kind of lighting to incorporate, whether that be decadent floral chandeliers or strings of soft glowing Edison bulbs.
You’ll also need to factor in the weather. The general shape of the tent may protect you and your guests from rain, but if it’s an unusually cold or hot day, you’ll need to consider portable heaters or fans to keep your guests comfortable.
Other items specific to the needs of your wedding, such as flooring for the dance, tables and seating for dinner, and a podium for the speeches will also need to be budgeted for.
What Else Should I Consider?
You’ll want to account for your location or venue. Since different types of tents require other surfaces for construction, you want to make sure that whatever tent you get is suited to your site.
In preparation for your tent’s debut on your wedding day, you should also consider the tent’s set up and take downtimes. Understanding how long it will take to set up and break down will make planning the day’s events much smoother.
Besides your tent’s main cost, which will most likely be your primary focus before purchasing, you should assess the insurance coverage. The last thing you want is to splurge on the perfect wedding tent only to have to pay more for any accidental damages it accrues.
Other costs, such as labor, should also be factored in so you can stay within your budget without sacrificing other necessities.
How Much Should I Budget?
When it comes to budgeting for your wedding tent, you may need to set aside a considerable amount. A tent may not seem that expensive at the outset, but the price tag starts to spike when you consider size, structure, other equipment (hello, lighting!), and labor.
Your best option is to plan the scope of your wedding early, including seating arrangements, flooring, and location, because you’ll need to choose your wedding tent accordingly. By getting a jump-start on planning for your wedding tent, you can get quotes early and budget accordingly.
Before you start searching for quotes and budgeting for your entire wedding, you have one more crucial decision to make. You’ll first want to decide if you wish to buy or rent your wedding tent. Both options are available and come with their benefits, but how they will benefit you depends on your plans.
Should I Buy or Rent a Wedding Tent?
Both options are great, but which option is right for you? Before you sign away a chunk of your wedding budget to purchase a brand new wedding tent or hire a rental company, decide which option best suits you.
The Answer: It Depends
To make an informed decision, we’ve broken down some advantages and disadvantages of buying and renting a wedding tent. Take a look at the pros and cons of wedding tents for rent and wedding tents for sale to discover which option aligns with your wedding needs.
Buying a Wedding Tent
Much like searching for your venue, searching for wedding tents for sale means many options to choose from. With a variety of tents to choose from, you can pick out one that matches your wedding vision. Keep your budget in mind, however, as buying a tent tends to be more expensive than renting one.
Then again, if you have plans to put your tent to use after your wedding, purchasing your own may be the most cost-effective choice for you. Or maybe you have a friend that’s getting married in the same season as you, and you can sell it to her!
- Free-range for decorating
- Reusable for other events
- A variety of tent styles to choose from
- You won’t be dependent on a rental company
- Expensive up-front
- Might need professionals for setup
- You’ll need to find and pay for decorations, equipment, and services separately
Renting a Wedding Tent
When you’re looking for wedding tents for rent, you need to scope out rental companies.
Some companies charge labor per hour, bundle their services, or only offer a limited style selection. Since many companies bundle additional features/rentals, such as furnishings, sound system equipment, flooring, and lighting. Find one that’s a match for your needs and has a solid reputation.
Remember that you will be reliant on the rental company’s staff and schedule for the setup and breakdown since you don’t own the tent. Be sure you research a company well before securing them, so you don’t wind up getting scammed with lazy workers on your big day.
- Bundled prices for tent, furnishings, and equipment
- Labor costs included
- More affordable
- Rental company covers sizing/calculations
- Limited style choices
- You’re dependent on the rental company’s schedule and staff
- May be high affiliated costs
Top 3 Wedding Tents to Purchase
We know that we’ve thrown a lot of information out there about wedding tents for rent and purchase. To make up for it, we’ve included a few of the best wedding tents for sale to help narrow your search if you choose to go the ‘buy’ route:
1. Party Tent Canopy Shelter 40 x 20
This canopy style tent, lined with beautiful arched windows, provides a panoramic view of your venue while providing much-needed shelter from the scorching sun or a rampant rainstorm. This tent allows for quick and easy setup and takedown for any occasion.
2. White Canopy Shelter 32 x 16
This tent option is much like the previous Party Tent Canopy Shelter, only smaller. With a high-quality framework, durable connectors, and removable window and end walls, the White Canopy Shelter is the optimal space for smaller recreational and commercial events.
3. Gazebo Wedding Tent 29 x 20
This gazebo style tent is ideal for an intimate wedding ceremony, picnic, party, or quaint get together. While it’s the smallest option of the three, the Gazebo Wedding Tent’s open floor plan allows you to maximize the space for all of your entertaining needs.
Make Sure You’re Con-TENT With Your Choice!
Who knew there was so much to know about wedding tents, right?! But your wedding day ain’t no camping trip, and the ‘stakes’ are so much higher (get it? Like tent stakes!?). And just like saying ‘yes’ to the dress is a big deal, being con-Tent with your wedding venue is uber important.
So, be sure you take your time searching for your perfect wedding tent. And if you’re going the rental route, remember that the company you choose to work with is just as important as the tent choice itself.
We hope our guide helps you find a wedding tent that fulfills your every wish – happy tenting!