It all depends on how much you need and where it's going.

By Laura Miller
December 29, 2020
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Imagine this: You've found the perfect setting for your wedding. It's everything you've ever dreamed of. There's just one problem: It's a public park, a field on a private farm, or beside a lake at your alma mater. It's up to you to style and plan everything and to turn that plot of land into a beautiful wedding venue. How much does it typically cost to bring electricity and water to a venue that doesn't have any infrastructure in place?

Power

Essentially, the generator will be your friend. That will be the easiest way to have available power in a variety of places around a property. First and foremost, you need to understand how generators work. A circuit is around 20 amps / 2000 watts; one amp is around 100 watts. DJ sound gear, non-LED dance lighting, coffee makers, and food warmers require ten amps each; tent lights, perimeter lighting, LED dance lighting, and patterned lighting require around two amps each. When you think about the amount of lighting and sound a typical wedding uses, it adds up quickly. You need appropriate generators that will reliably power each element for the duration of your ceremony and reception.

There are two types of generators—inverter and non-inverter. Never use the non-inverter type for anything other than twinkle lights or small elements. They aren't strong enough to reliably power any DJ or sound equipment. On the other hand, inverter-style generators are built for power. They will be a little larger and more expensive (and will have to be brought in behind a truck), but they will power your ceremony and reception without a second thought. Since you probably won't require a large inverter generator in everyday life, renting is the way to go. Most large box stores or home improvement stores rent generators in a variety of sizes and wattages; prices range from around $200 a day for smaller options to over $1,000, depending on location, delivery need, and size.

Additionally, there are professionals of all sorts who you can hire to handle lighting, sound, tenting, power, and the like. They will all know the required wattage for their respective items and, in some cases, can handle renting generators as well.

Water

If you're hoping to get married in a rustic barn, there's a chance that your chosen venue not have running water. This is definitely not a dealbreaker—it's actually pretty common to have to bring water to a venue, especially when couples are tying the knot at public parks or beaches. But we're not just talking about water to drink (although water for guests and for making ice is important)—this is also water for cooking, post-reception cleanup, and for the bathrooms. As your caterers if they require their own water source or if they'll provide their own water—you can rent your own water truck for a few hundred dollars, depending on location and number of gallons needed.

And let's not gloss over the topic of bathrooms, as renting portable restrooms is important business. Make sure to ask your rental company about water needs—most portable restroom companies, whether small or luxury, will bring their own water tank. You don't want to bring in more water than necessary, so make sure this cost is appropriately covered first.

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