Summer wedding or winter wedding? Indoor or Outdoor? Lilies or Roses? DJ or Band? Wedding planner or not?
Yes, there are many choices to be made, and often there are many details that couples miss when planning their wedding. Hence, the ultimate question, should you hire a wedding planner?
We’ve all seen some shows or movies where a wedding planner is very much involved in the picture. It’s often portrayed as a glamorous job, and at the end of the day, when all goes well, and everyone is happy, it’s the wedding planner who is to thank.
In real life, however, are they beneficial? And are they worth the extra expense to hire them? Here we shall look at the pros and cons.
PRO: They can manage your budget
Wedding planners will be able to help you determine our budget and find ways to stay within it. Due to their extensive network and many vendor connections, they can find resources and materials/supplies quickly. Still, they may also have special prices or deals from businesses they often go to. Wedding planners obviously carry out many weddings each year and already know the local market. They can also bargain with sellers that they are comfortable working with.
CON: They are an additional cost
Yes, they save you money, but they, themselves, are not free. Depending on how involved they are, there are different levels/tiers of service. Make sure to check their price lists to see what is included in the price. Also, decide whether you want a wedding planner (involved with the concept, planning, managing, coordinating months before the wedding) or wedding coordinator (involved mostly on the day itself to ensure everything goes smoothly).
PRO: They know all the details
Wedding planners have many experiences with the organization of a wedding. Through the years, they’ve probably accumulated more and more little components to add to the wedding. So when it comes to the basics, they’ve got you. With them is probably a book of contacts and categories of details that couples may forget about. Napkins? Plating? Lighting? Where to print invitations? They’ve got everything.
CON: You don’t have as much control
Since you hired them and it is their job, you may have to give up some of your control. If you’re someone who has a fear of missing out, or you’re incredibly detail-oriented and want to know everything, then hiring a planner may be uncomfortable for you. Since planners do this often, they have the eye to tell if something is aesthetically pleasing, and if something just doesn’t go with the rest of your theme. You have to be open to their opinion and feedback.
PRO: They can make a useful timeline
Wedding planners will have a ready binder or book that clearly organizes their time and yours. They are extremely organized as they may have other weddings to handle too. If you’re too busy with work, they are the ones who can attend site tours, cake testing, meeting caterers, and meeting venue managers. Part of their timeline is not just finding people and signing contracts, but following up with everyone to track the progress and confirmation.
CON: You don’t have access to the schedule all the time
If you are not the main organizer of your wedding, then it would be hard to keep up with any progress or changes. Schedules may have to be altered some times, so when your family has questions about your wedding, you can’t always answer.
PRO: All members of your family can focus on the wedding
With a wedding planner at hand, they can handle and coordinate everything that goes on in the ceremony and reception. That is what you are paying them for: to stay on top of things and ensure all aspects of the event go smoothly. Hence, no family members should be distracted by the little things and focus solely on the wedding.
CON: It’s hard to find someone you can actually trust
The search for the perfect wedding planner may be hard. Not to mention, it takes a lot of guts to put your trust in them. You’re putting the most important day of your lives in their hands. So best make sure you get along with your planner and openly discuss your expectations for the day.
The decision to hire a wedding planner really depends on you and your fiancé’s lifestyles. If both of you are too occupied with work, then yes, a wedding planner may be useful. If you don’t mind having a little less control over the small details, then yes, they’re helpful. If you can allocate your budget to hire a planner and cut back on the more minor things, sure, they’re useful.
If you happen to be a wedding planner and you are looking to establish your wedding business, check this post out.
During the preparation of a wedding, the bride must put a lot of her trust in a lot of people. This includes her family, her planners, the venue managers and, heck, even faith in her groom to show up on time! Additionally, the one other person that the couple should not have to worry about trusting–are their photographers.
It’s no doubt that they are an essential part of the ceremony. If you think about it, the service, the flower choices, the bridesmaids, or the dinner will come and go and stay in the past, but the photos are everlasting.
So, it’s crucial that when planning your wedding, you choose a reliable photographer. Reliable in terms of the quality of their photos, their availability throughout the event, and their communication with you after. Here are some steps and advice on how to hire a wedding photographer.
- Do Your Research!
It’s essential to look at as much wedding photography as you can to get an idea of what look you want for your album. Take note of what you find most aesthetically pleasing, color schemes, and which moments-captured you liked the best.
- Social Media
If you’re too busy in the beginning, a good start would be to lightly check social media. Instagram, Pinterest, and Flickr are great platforms. You can instantly save, pin, and like the photos you enjoyed.
- Wedding-Planning Platforms and Websites
There are numerous platforms specifically designed for wedding organization. The most popular would be Zola, The Knot, Wedding Wire, Mint, WeddingHappy, and much more. There are also databases/search engines specifically for looking at wedding photographers near you: SnapKnot or TheKnot Marketplace.
It would also be a good idea to keep up with wedding magazines and blogs. These sources often write articles and recommendations on the best photographers and the latest wedding photo trends.
- Check Their Websites
Once you’ve compiled a list of photographers that caught your attention, the next step is to look at their portfolios thoroughly. Make sure to review all their work, ensuring there is consistency in the quality of their photographs. The design and layout of their website is also another indicator of the photographer’s style and personality.
Their websites should contain links to all their social media, so try to thoroughly look at those to view how they interact with their followers and maybe, even past clients. It’s definitely a good sign if their business has numerous client feedback. If you are willing to pay more for someone credible, then client testimonials are obviously crucial in your search. If you really adore a photographer’s work, but they’re still entirely new to the business, then this next step is essential.
- Contact Photographer and Set-Up Interview
Meeting your photographer in person could be the deciding factor in choosing your photographer. In-person, we suggest you demand to see full wedding albums from multiple occasions. It’s essential to do this because they may just show their best photos online, so by seeing all the photos, you can examine if all their work is pretty much at a high level of quality throughout. Also, ask for photos that have a similar setting as yours if you’re having an indoor evening wedding, best not look at the photographers’ work at an outdoor morning event.
Another piece of advice is to see if you get along with them! If you and your photographer have the same vibe and attitude, then they’ll be able to feel passionate about your wedding too. Discuss what you like about their work and point out your favorite pictures from their album so they can keep that in mind and achieve the same thing.
- Compare Pricing Packages
Discuss the pricing in detail. Ask about the general, standard package, and what that entails. Ask what are the “extras”? Does it include editing, special effects? Ask if there is a special offer for an engagement photo session? Also, with the price you’re paying, how many photos are included? Or how many hours will the photographers be there for the price? What happens if you want them to stay overtime? For more established photographers, check online what past clients were charged. For newer photographers, try to bargain, so get your money’s worth. And of course, compare prices of all the photographers you’re interviewing.
- Go Over Logistics
Finally, discuss the details of the event: schedule, a timeline of the day, how many photographers are involved, what is off-limits at the wedding, which guests are essential, etc. Also, get details on the post-wedding process (how long after will you get the photos, in what form will they be sent and presented to you). If you all agree on the process, then consider this photographer hired.
Choosing a photographer may be an intimidating task, but just remember that you are not in this alone. It’s a good idea to have your spouse or friends and family to share their input on who would be the best photographer for your wedding.
Lastly, if you are looking to become a wedding photographer check out my last post.