The Pros and Cons of Indoor vs. Outdoor Weddings

One of the most important decisions you’ll make when planning your wedding reception is whether to hold it indoors or outside.

When you begin to plan your wedding, one of the first decisions you need to make is whether the ceremony should be held indoors or outside. Some couples enjoy the fresh air and natural beauty of a romantic outdoor venue, such as the beach or the countryside, while others prefer the comfort and versatility of an indoor venue. Both are excellent options, but each has its own set of benefits and drawbacks.

Here are some pros and cons to consider before making this big decision.

Indoor Wedding Reception



1. Control over your environment

Having your wedding reception inside guarantees that you and your guests are in a controlled environment, thereby ensuring their comfort and security.

Furthermore, indoor venues provide photographers with greater control over lighting. This can result in better-looking, more professional wedding photos to treasure.

2. Protection against the elements

Since you are sheltered from the elements, you can be confident it will not literally rain on your parade! This means that your celebration will take place rain or shine, and you will not be affected by sudden changes in weather.


1. Limitations

Indoor venues require you to adhere to their regulations and any space and décor restrictions. This means you may need to make some changes to your wedding plans based on what the space and venue have to offer and what you have at your disposal.

2. High demand

During the colder or rainier months, indoor venues become increasingly popular. It might be difficult to find a suitable indoor venue at the last minute. If you’ve already settled on an indoor location, it’s best to reserve it ahead of time, around 6-9 months in advance to avoid the stress of scrambling to find a reception venue as your special day approaches.

Outdoor Wedding Reception


1. Minimal decoration

The natural beauty of the great outdoors means that many outdoor venues don’t need much decoration to look spectacular. If you’re having an outdoor wedding reception, you can save money by choosing simple décor.

2. Large, open spaces

Outdoor locations can be more family-friendly, particularly if there are small children who like running around. While taking in the fresh air, you can enjoy activities such as blowing bubbles or releasing doves, butterflies, balloons, or paper lanterns.


1. The need for a backup plan

No one can control the weather, even on their wedding day. If you’re having your wedding reception outside, you should have a “Plan B” in case the weather doesn’t cooperate. Rain and snow may put a damper on the festivities, while scorching heat and oppressive humidity can make you and your guests miserable.

2. Issues with lighting

Depending on the time of day, natural light can make for stunning photographs. However, there are certain things you can’t control, such as shadows and harsh blazing light, which results in mediocre photographs.

For indecisive couples, combination weddings offer the best of both worlds. At Old Essex Barn, our ceremony areas range from grand to intimate, with the largest being the barn itself. You can have the main ceremony in this fantastic historic building, and the reception outdoors beneath the stars – or the other way around! We can also offer outdoor ceremonies in our wedding gazebo situated in the beautiful grounds of our freshly planted gardens. The choices for crafting your dream wedding are endless, whether indoors, outside, or both.