Can a Wedding Planner really save you money? Well as a wedding planner, I really hope so, but it isn’t so easy to quantify in dollars and cents.
I think that when people ask this question they are hoping that the wedding planner will have a network of secret connections all over town and because they work with this one planner they will get 10% off here or 20% off there. Like an assumed discount everywhere they go because they are working with that specific planner.
I have never worked like this and honestly, don’t know anyone who has. There is nothing legit in my book about getting kickbacks for referring services to vendors. Because that’s what the discount would be. The client would get the discount and the vendor would give that discounted amount to the wedding planner for referring them the business. Would you want to work with someone who was padding their wallet double by working with you? No, I wouldn’t. It just doesn’t convey that the client's needs are that planner's priority.
When I work with clients, the ways that I’m saving them money and providing immense value is through my expertise and experience with the local vendors, venues, and my ability to execute and manage your complicated event the day of your wedding.
Here are the exact ways that I save my clients money:
Most of my clients have full-time jobs or are busy graduate students. A wedding is a complicated event with a lot of moving parts that need to be planned months in advance. Not everyone has the time to incorporate the conception, research, communication, interview, and decision making processes, as well as the countless in-person meetings into their already busy schedules.
By providing a service that establishes, in detail, a clients wants and needs I have the ability gather together the things and people they would need for their big day and present it to them in a discussion where they are only working with me and making decisions with me, not 13 different vendors.
It saves so much time for the client that it’s ridiculous and one person knows all aspects of your wedding which can help you throughout the planning process and on the wedding day.
Because I have worked with so many vendors over the years I know who does what best. I would hate for you to want something, like a cascading bouquet, and what turns up at your wedding is not exactly what you wanted because that vendor isn’t really that good at making a cascading bouquet.
By referring clients only to the vendors that can create the best version of what they are looking for do they win all around. They win because they can choose from the best people, find the best value for what they want and in the end have the best results.
You might be thinking, oh well, I could just look at reviews and see who is a 5-star company. Well sure you could, but the 5-star rating system can be misleading. Here’s why… how many times in your life have you ever hired a DJ? If this isn’t a service that you use on a regular basis you might not have a base metric for what is good and what isn’t.
I have worked with DJ’s who are great communicators, incredibly professional, and alert to what the crowd likes and is dancing to. Those are 5 stars DJ’s. I have also worked with DJ’s who take days to respond to email, arrive an hour late, play games on their phone all night, and completely ignore the crowd while continuing to play totally awful songs that no one wants to hear. Those are also 5 star DJ’s.
Because I work with vendors every weekend, I know exactly what their level of service should be and expect only the best for my clients.
By providing suggestions based on my experience and can direct my clients to spend their money wisely and guide them in creating their dream wedding.
An example of this would be knowing the right rental company to choose from. There is a particular rental company in my area that makes table linens that don’t hit the floor. They just hoover 2 inches above it. It’s obvious and it looks awful. A client wouldn’t find that out until the day of the event and then when it matters most, be unable to do something to fix the problem.
It could also be that I help them create the visual aesthetic for the wedding and assist with budgeting for the vendors and things needed to create that look and feel. For example, if I see that their Pinterest board is full of outdoor dining tables with market lights, I make sure that we budget for a specialty lighting vendor to bring in market lights. That way that money isn’t taken away from something else and it’s not a big surprise (or frustration) later.
Because really what do you think would happen if you’ve already spent your allocated budget on the venue, rentals, catering, and flowers and come to find out that you don’t get market lights with your venue rental and you can’t afford them. You wouldn’t be able to achieve the look you were originally going for, and although it sounds small, lighting, especially at night, creates a whole other world of ambiance and magic that makes a wedding so beautiful.
Managing vendors and rentals on the wedding day is important. These are the services you’ve paid for and the things that you need to make your day go off without a hitch. As the planner it’s my responsibility to make sure that the cake is delivered on time, the rental company brought the correct number of table linens and lanterns, as well as that the band plays for the full 4 hours and doesn’t skip out early or take too long of a break.
An extreme example of how a planner can do this is when I helped plan a Top Gun themed wedding with a reception that was held at a private airport terminal. It was a beautiful space and my bride and groom made their grand entrance in on a private plane. But halfway through the night the fire alarm starts going off and because it’s apart of the airport they are required to follow protocol, which means that the fire department has to inspect the facility before the alarm is turned off.
Well, imagine my client's shock and horror about this happening for 15 straight minutes. Its loud AF and strobe lights are flashing and nobody wants to be inside. It was my responsibility to demand that the venue provide extra time so that my client can have the hours they paid for. It was also on me to sweet talk the band, bartenders and transportation company to extend their services longer than they were paid, because even though they weren’t working, their contracts stipulated a specific end time that we needed to extend. Everything worked out, but man, it was a tough situation and something I would never wish on anyone.
We never expect anything to go wrong but when it does it’s important to have someone on your team that will solve or fix the problem and does what’s right by you and the money you’ve spent.
As the couple getting married you have put so much thought, effort, emotion and anticipation into this one day. You should be able to hand off the responsibility of managing your wedding so that you and your family get this singular opportunity to be present in such a fleeting moment.
During a wedding, I will work anywhere from 12 to 17 hours the day of, I will walk an average of 20 miles during the night, and I will put out countless fires that only someone with a detailed knowledge of the wedding plan can do. This is not a job for your bestie, your mom, or a newbie. Your family and friends should have the opportunity to share and celebrate your joy with you and only someone with experience will truly be prepared to handle your big day.
You won’t get this day back. You won’t get the money back that you spent on everything. You should to stop and look around throughout the day and the night and realize that all these amazing people will never be in one place together ever again. You won’t ever have a full day to look and feel so beautiful and special and live in the love that surrounds you at that moment.
I’m getting pretty sappy about it because that’s truly what your wedding day becomes. It’s just your best day and if you don’t have someone helping you and working for you then it will just become stressful and distract you from why you are really there, to get married and enjoy this epic party.
As I said at the beginning while I don’t have the exact dollars and cents that you’ll save by hiring a wedding planner their service to you and your family on your wedding day will be well worth their fee.
Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team.
Don't worry, your information will not be shared.
By getting this guide you are getting your own personal wedding planner right in your inbox.