Oh weddings, how I love you! I was definitely one of the crazy people in my event management class who was all about weddings, most event planners don’t do weddings. However, I just love all of the hoop-la that surrounds them, you know the flowers, the draping, the love, you know what I mean! Anyway I was super excited to become a certified wedding planner and will be making small steps towards my own business (eventually). For now I will be helping out some friends and family and of course blogging about it here. So let’s get started!
There are many people out there that I do not have to convince to use a wedding planner. They are not quite sure what they are doing or they know they do not have the time to plan a wedding. Others may think why would I hire someone when I have my entire family to help me. To that I say, many of your family members have been through the process before however this was probably a few years ago! Plus things have changed, “rules” have changed, and by rules I mean you do not have to follow the format your grandmother used to get married, its 2013 you can create any wedding you want! I thought today I would just give you the basics on what wedding planners can do!
- If you are a couple who already have your wedding planned, you know what you’re doing, but you still have a few questions, this service is for you. For example if you are having issues with a family member or a vendor or maybe need suggestions for a vendor or concept, you can set up a meeting with a wedding planner to discuss these issues. This is a one time meeting usually around 2 hours, when the meeting finishes the planners job is completed.
- This service will cost anywhere between $150 and $350 depending on length and planner.
Month of (also know as day of) Planner
- This is my favourite type of planning. This is for the couple who knows how to throw a great event but at the end of the day don’t want to be working at their own wedding! The planner will meet with the couple about a month before the wedding. Here the planner will learn of all the details that have already been taken care of and will discuss what still needs to happen. The planner will take all vendor contacts and will be in touch as she/he will be the main contact on the day of your wedding. Over the month there are usually 2 to 3 pre wedding meetings to make sure everything is on track and she/he will create a schedule for your wedding day. The planner will then attend or run your dress rehearsal depending on officiant availability. Finally the wedding planner will be the main contact on your wedding day, if a problem arises you shouldn’t even know about it, if it can be resolved it will be, unless your consultation is needed (ie. to fix an issue you may need to pay for something-the planner does not have the right to spend your money!) The overall idea is that you have planned this amazing wedding and we as the planner want you to enjoy it!!
- This service can be anywhere from $600 to $1500 (depending on location and planner experience)
- This is for couples who have no idea where to start (or have lots of ideas but don’t know how to make them come true!) or even couples who are ready to plan their wedding but have busy work/social/family lives. For full coordination planning the wedding planner is involved about a year out from the wedding. She/he will be there for all planning stages. What is important to remember is that the wedding planner is working for you and they want to create a day for you! The planner will have an initial meeting with you to get a feel for your personality and what you are all about, she/he will then put some ideas together. As the planning process begins, she/he will set up all appointments for you, this includes meetings with the venue, caterer, florist, bridal stores (she/he does not usually attend gown fitting, but can attend upon request) etc. The planner will be the first point of contact for all vendors before and during the wedding. Like month of coordination she/he will set up a schedule, manage your budget, attend/run the dress rehearsal, coordinate the day of.
- Cost for full coordination $1500 to $4000 (again depending on location and experience)
So there you have it, this is what wedding planners are about. A few things to keep in mind though:
- Yes they are a financial investment, however they have contacts who will save you money on other services you use for your wedding.
- Find a certified planner. All Wedding Planners Institute of Canada [WPIC] certified planners are able to put the WPIC logo on their website, look for this when you are shopping around. These individuals have been through courses, have educational tools available to them to update their skills constantly, they are no more expensive than someone who is not certified (prices are all based on location and expertise), and WPIC has a code of ethics that all planners must follow or they are stripped of their certification (meaning you will be treated with respect and as you should if you are a client). (For those of you not in Canada, the United States does have certification programs, also WPIC certifies many resorts in the Caribbean and Mexico!)
- Wedding planners are there to help you. Weddings are stressful, they are big events. I think it make sense to have help with such an important event, also help that is neutral not family!! Plus we have contacts, it is our job to get your great prices on everything!
Anyway, for those of you who were wondering about wedding planners I hope this helps you understand a bit more and also to see what general costing will be!