The hiring of a wedding planner can be a big decision when you are a bride on a do-it-yourself budget. Most times, you will need–and most definitely want–some level of scaled down service from a planner. Here, Denise Moore of The Special Date explains those different levels of service, plus how to go about finding and working with an event planner that meets your specific needs. Enjoy! ~Bobette
What Type of Service You Need!
Consider your budget, of course, and determine what type of service you need. If you just need consultation only, for example, make sure you determine what is included. There are several different options for wedding event services:
This service offers one on one interaction with the event specialist. Usually a few hours of presenting your preferences while the specialist provides you with direction and advise so you can tackle your event.
This option usually includes the consultation. All planning is staged by the event planner. This is from the vendors’ roles down to the day of the event.
This incorporates all services, as it relates to planning, consulting and handling the event from start to finish.
Day of Coordination Services
This option requires the event planner to just perform the day of the wedding. He or she will take instruction from you and handle the coordindation of the event.
Once you determine the service you desire call around and do some price comparrison. Make sure you are clear about what is being offered so you can compare apples to apples. Remember you often get what you pay for. Cheaper is not always better, however expensive fees do not guarantee perfection. Be wise with your choices.
Read Between the Lines
This is your big day. Please take the necessary time in selecting an event planner. Every professional event planner has a contract. Do not be hasty by signing without studying it; ask to review the contract before you sign on the dotted line. When I say review, I mean take a few days to read it. You may want to compare the offerings and limitations from one contract to another. Pay close attention to cancellation fees and the explanation of services provided. Make sure the services provided are the same services you were promised in the inital conversation/consultation.
Ask for a timeline of the proposed tasks so you will know when and how the event planner will work on your event. For instance, if your wedding is in 18 months you may want to know if the specialist wil start working on your event now or wait until 12 months prior to your event. Also, be aware the sooner the work begins, the sooner you need to be prepared to start paying money for deposits and fees.
Ask how often you should expect to be in contact with them leading up to the big day. You need to know how readily accessible your event planner or team will be. But also remember you need to be accessible as well. It will not help your cause if a crucial decision needs to be made and your event planner is unable to reach you for a few days. If you find anytime before the wedding day that you may be unavailable for reasons such as a cruise, trip or surgery, please make sure you have a back up person available to make decisions for you on your behalf.
Remember this is your day and you want to make sure you are making a well informed decision about your event planner, your needs and limitations.
I wish you all the best of luck in your endeavors!!!
The Special Date Global Event Planning Service
Providing Event Planning Services across the U.S.