WHY HIRE A WEDDING PLANNER?
It really is in the name. A full service wedding planner will oversee and guide you in the planning of your entire wedding. From start to finish, they will take into consideration all of your ideas and work closely with you until the big day itself.
With a full wedding planning service, you are gaining access to an industry professional who will be there to guide you through the entire planning process; an expert third party who is adept at keeping everything under control. In a nutshell, it is a lot like having your very own dedicated Wedding P.A. In other words, a personal assistant who just happens to be an expert in planning and co-ordinating the most remarkable and unforgettable weddings.
It is fair to say that most couples, particularly those who are planning a wedding for the first time, feel a little bit daunted by the amount of work involved in creating the perfect day. This feeling is made worse if you have busy lives and hectic work schedules. Your wedding day is one of the biggest days of your life and no matter how overwhelming it may feel, there is absolutely no reason to compromise on the day of your dreams.
However the perfect day looks and feels to you, my full wedding planning service covers every aspect of it from start to finish. It begins with a consultation, in which I will ask appropriate questions enabling me to begin to get to know you as a couple and establish an understanding of what you want to achieve.
From there, I will work collaboratively with you as your single point of contact to deliver on your vision, from identifying your venue to sourcing and liaising with all of the necessary vendors and managing all of the logistics when the big day arrives.
Needless to say, you have the final say on everything. It is your wedding and what is most important to me is that your guests’ experience is a true reflection of your hopes and desires. As opposed to swooping in and taking over, I much prefer to work WITH you. I will never push you into making a decision you are not entirely happy with, no matter how small.
Not unlike any memorable journey, it all begins with a few simple steps;
AN INITIAL CONSULTATION
Your wedding is a celebration of your story as a couple. The extent to which this is understood by your wedding planner will have a significant bearing on their ability to personalise the experience for you and your guests. During an initial consultation, your planner should seek to understand your vision for the perfect day and the level of support and assistance you need to achieve this. They should demonstrate a level of competence, expertise and passion which inspires and excites you as you embark upon this once in a lifetime journey together.
YOUR BUDGET, UNDERSTOOD
Irrespective of how much money you are comfortable spending on your wedding, an experienced wedding planner will provide the appropriate guidance to ensure that your priorities are identified and your overall budget is allocated correctly. Expect your planner to have a detailed discussion with you and provide you with supporting tools to enable you to calculate and keep track of your overall spend.
If you don’t already have a venue in mind, your planner will help you to identify your criteria for the perfect wedding venue and will invest the necessary time and effort to search for venues which meet that criteria before shortlisting and presenting options to you.
They will visit potential venues with you or on your behalf and will review contracts and negotiate terms in order to achieve the best possible value for money. In doing so, they will probably ask questions based on their experience of running weddings which may not even cross your mind. Their focus should be on ensuring the venue is equipped to deliver precisely the type of wedding you wish to have.
This is arguably the most time-consuming aspect of planning a wedding, with so many suppliers to engage!
Where to start? Who to trust? Fear not! A wedding planner’s contact directory is a priceless resource, guaranteed to save you heaps of time, energy and stress.
Having taken into consideration all of your requirements and carried out the necessary research, your planner should present you with a number of available options. Then, during meetings and consultations with key providers such as your caterer, wedding photographer and florist, they should ask all the questions you do not think of, ensuring you avoid any pitfalls.
YOUR WEDDING PLANNING ROAD MAP
Above all, a wedding planner’s job is to help you to relax and enjoy the preparation for your perfect day. They are accountable for making sure your priorities are taken care of and that absolutely nothing is overlooked.
First things first… expect your planner to present you with a road map. A step by step process outlining the order in which your priorities are being taken care of. This, combined with regular progress updates and prompts should provide you with all the confidence and peace of mind you need.
FINAL STAGE PREPARATION
Around six weeks before the wedding is when the real fun begins, when it is time to finalise every detail. With the support of an experienced wedding planner, you can relax in the knowledge that everything is being taken care of. You will certainly not need to worry about responding to the endless e-mails and calls that you would otherwise have to deal with if you were planning your wedding yourself.
Your planner will ensure that all of the necessary conversations with vendors take place, arrangements will be finalised and a detailed wedding day plan will be created and circulated to everyone involved. This results in everyone knowing precisely what is expected of them and when, enabling you to relax and enjoy the build up to your perfect day.
ON THE DAY CO-ORDINATION
From the point at which the first vendor arrives, your planner will be the single point of contact for you and everyone else involved. Besides overseeing the logistics of the day and managing all of your vendors, they will take care of some of the details such as correctly pinning on button holes, ensuring members of your Bridal party, Groomsmen and Ushers understand their roles, queueing music throughout your ceremony and making any necessary announcements.
WHO NEEDS A WEDDING PLANNER?
Most couples feel overwhelmed by the amount of work involved in creating their perfect day. This feeling is made worse if you have hectic work schedules and busy social lives. Perhaps you live remotely from your chosen venue or are planning to host your wedding in an unusual venue or a temporary structure (e.g. a marquee) where the number of resources involved are multiplied, adding to the amount of work and potential stress involved. In these circumstances a reputable planner is a prerequisite.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
Do not be afraid to talk candidly to your planner about their fee structure. Some planners charge a fixed fee and will focus on generating as much additional value for you as possible, whilst others earn commission from the vendors they source and recommend on your behalf.
More often than not, when a planner relies on commission from vendors, the cost of that commission is passed on to the customer, i.e. you.
A planner who charges a fixed fee will be more transparent in their dealings with suppliers and is likely to deliver better value for money overall. Furthermore, their unbiased approach towards suppliers ensures that they only recommend suppliers who they believe are the right match for you. An honest and trustworthy planner will leverage their relationships with suppliers in order to generate the best benefits for YOU, not themselves!
Not unlike so many other things, the price you pay will be reflective of the service you should expect to receive. You should expect to pay somewhere in the region of £4,000 to £5,000 for a full wedding planning service. This should afford you an experienced, professional wedding planner with the necessary know-how to handle just about any eventuality, without you even knowing about it.
If a planner advertises the service at a significantly lower price, buyer BEWARE! Ask precisely how much experience they have and always request sight of testimonials or better still, ask to speak to previous clients who are able to back this up. The last thing you want to find yourselves doing is counting the cost either during or after the event as a result of an inexperienced amateur letting you down. Ultimately, your peace of mind is priceless.
HOW DOES A WEDDING PLANNER ADD VALUE?
It is fair to say that employing the help of a planning professional for the full organisation of your wedding takes a lot off your plate. Here’s just a few of the many reasons why having a full service wedding planner is worth the investment.
- Time – for couples living busy lives with hectic work and social schedules, it is just not practical to plan an entire wedding yourselves. With the help of a full service wedding planner, you won’t need to sacrifice your valuable time to organise your dream day, as they will be available to do it all for you.
- Experience – planning and attending your wedding is supposed to be one of the most exciting experiences of your lives, and by taking on the task of planning the event yourselves, you run the risk of replacing this excitement with stress. With a wedding planner, you’ll have a stress-free experience to look back on and remember for all the right reasons.
- Money – when you have all manner of expenses to consider in order for your wedding to live up to your expectations, it can seem like a hefty fee to have it planned for you. However, enlisting the help of a knowledgeable industry professional can actually end up saving you money!
- Quality – On the note of quality, it doesn’t end with the suppliers already known by your wedding planner. If your chosen planner is at the top of their game and really knows their industry, they will find whatever it takes to give your big day that added “WOW!” factor. If you are looking for the highest standard of suppliers for your big day, then doing it alone will be a time consuming and laborious task. By sourcing your wedding professionals through an experienced wedding planner, who will have an extensive list of the highest-calibre options on the market, you are sure to get the best possible value and quality for your money.
Sarah and Billy
“We thought we had a clear vision for our dream wedding but can honestly say our day was better than we could have ever imagined. Behind the beautiful serene flow of our day was a whole load of planning, organising, problem solving and quick thinking and we didn’t do any of it! Helen gave us complete confidence in her delivery and her presence on the day was not only invaluable but thoroughly lovely too. Love from Sarah and Billy.”
Joe and Florence
“A very special thank you to you Helen for making our day PERFECT and totally stress free.”
Alison and Richard
“Thanks to you Helen, Richard and I had a day which was PERFECT for us. Everything went perfectly…thanks to all your careful organisation. Thank you for helping us with our ideas and for saying yest wherever possible!”
For many people, wedding planning is a stressful undertaking, even at the best of times.
You need to have a high tolerance to stressful situations to be able to cope with the impact of a global pandemic in the midst of your wedding plans. It will almost certainly diminish your resilience and optimism. With this in mind, I would like to offer an hour of my time to any couple needing advice or guidance. This offer comes with absolutely no obligation and is entirely free of charge. Whatever stage of the wedding planning process you are at and whatever you choose to devote the time to is up to you. I am happy to share my wedding planning knowledge and experience with couples who would appreciate some support during these challenging times.
You are welcome to call me on 07561 107888 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.