Vow renewals are popular, romantic choices for milestone anniversaries and other important life events. And while your vow renewal will have a number of similarities to a wedding, it also has some important differences. How do these affect your choice of an event venue? Here's what every couple needs to know. 

1. You Have More Venue Choices. Because there are no standards and traditions for vow renewals, they open up much more venue choices than weddings generally do. You might opt for a museum, garden, park, corporate event space, restaurant, or performing arts center. This is a very personalized event, and it must follow no blueprint other than your own. 

2. Your Party May Be Smaller. Vow renewals tend to be smaller than many weddings. This isn't a hard-and-fast rule, of course. A couple who eloped might want a huge party for their renewal. But in general, you can often choose smaller and more intimate venues which may be unrealistic for your wedding day. And because there are fewer trappings than those of a wedding and reception, you can also put your money into a venue splurge. 

3. It Doesn't Need to Be the Same. How similar should your vow renewal be to your original wedding? It's entirely up to you. You might want to link the two events by having the same colors, theme, or even outfits. However, you may also want to create something entirely new that reflects your interests now. So don't feel obliged to look at venues in the same way that you did the first time. 

4. Your Goals Are Different. What do you want from this vow renewal ceremony and party? Chances are, it's different from your original wedding. Maybe your family had agendas or made decisions for you for the first time. Or perhaps you couldn't afford a big shindig when you married, but you can now. Different goals create different events with different approaches. Your event should reflect what you want now. 

5. You Have Life Experience. Couples who planned a wedding when they were younger have a lot more life experience now. You might now look at venue choices with a more experienced eye, prioritize different venue factors or amenities, and want to avoid problems you encountered at your wedding. Think about what you do and don't want to repeat as you vet and tour venues. 

Where to Start

The additional freedom, wisdom, and flexibility afforded by a vow renewal make venue choice an even more exciting prospect. Start by touring potential venues in your area. As you consider these unique factors, you're sure to find a renewal space that's perfect for your relationship and your family.