Your wedding is something intensely personal and you want everything about your big day to express your unique personality, tastes, values and relationship. All of which suggests you should plan and manage it the whole affair yourself, but on the other hand there are many very good reasons for getting some professional help.
Ask yourself some personal questions!
Are you the kind of person who likes to be in total control, enjoys planning, project management, budgeting and detail, takes pleasure in negotiating deals and reading the small print? Then you are probably best advised to do it yourself. If your personality is the opposite of this and you’d be much happier if someone took all these responsibilities off your shoulders, then hiring a wedding planner might be the perfect answer.
Are you super busy with a demanding career and a full-on life? Then getting some assistance makes sense. But if you have plenty of time on your hands and have capable family and friends who would love to help then a wedding planner may be unnecessary.
If your answers were somewhere in the middle (“I’m not a total control freak but I am quite happy with organising things, I’m fairly busy but with a bit of help I’m confident I could handle my own wedding planning and preparation…”) then one of our complete planners and organizers is probably all the expert help you will need.
Can I afford to hire a professional wedding planner?
There’s a perception that wedding planners are expensive and therefore just for celebrities or the super-rich. Professional planners obviously charge for their services and total costs can vary widely depending on how much you ask them to do. It’s therefore difficult to arrive at a meaningful average cost but if you assume that the fee will be somewhere in the region of 10%-15% of the total budget you probably wont be far wrong.
Having said that, a professional wedding planner will save you money in other ways. They are experts, they know the right people, they understand how the wedding industry works, and are skilled at getting the best deals and finding the most cost-effective solutions. If you let them take care of all the negotiations, decisions and purchases your budget could certainly go a lot further.
However, our complete wedding planner and organizer was created and written by professional wedding planners and are packed with savvy money saving tips and ideas for making the most of your budget – and they cost a fraction of an in-person wedding planner’s fee!
Think value as well as cost
Time is money and a wedding planner means you expend less of your own hours. The value of this may be difficult to quantify but if you are self-employed, charge $50 an hour and have to turn away clients to free yourself up for planning your big day, then the expense of a wedding planner can become very reasonable.
Plus they add value in other ways too. Most brides have a full-time job, a busy social life and plenty of other commitments. Finding the space to plan and organise a wedding on top of all that is a big ask.
You may, however, find one of our paper-based planners and organisers the best option. They guide you through every step of the wedding planning process, saving you countless hours and considerable anxiety.
Turning your dream into reality
You’ll have a mental picture of your perfect wedding. But making it happen can be a challenge. It’s easy to lose sight of your vision when you start talking to different vendors and your family and friends keep adding their personal ideas, suggestions and requests. It’s all too easy to end up with an event that’s not quite what you had in mind. Your wedding planner is a professional project manager whose job it is to make sure the client (you) gets what they wanted at the very beginning. Also, because they are not so personally involved they are much better placed to have difficult conversations on your behalf!
What’s more, when challenges occur they can probably come up with better solutions than you ever will – they have more knowledge, contacts and experience. Plus they will prove an invaluable source of inspirational and original ideas for your ceremony and reception. Or you may come up with some super creative idea but be at a loss about how best to make it happen. Your wedding planner will be able to give you a practical way of achieving it or maybe suggest something similar that will work better.
Having said that, one of our wedding planning books, packed with practical tips, inspirational ideas and smart strategies, will provide many of the same benefits.
Maybe a wedding co-ordinator is what you need?
A wedding planner, as the name suggests, plans everything from start to finish. A wedding co-ordinator gets involved much later in the process (in the last month or on the big day itself) to make sure that plan runs smoothly. They are typically hired for 10-20 hours and do things like making sure everything runs on schedule, that everything looks exactly as it should and that suppliers do what they agreed. They also provide last minute trouble shooting, take phone call and generally make sure everything runs smoothly.
A wedding co-ordinator obviously costs much less than a wedding planner but they can be worth their weight in gold. It’s inevitable that last minute issues will crop up and having a wedding co-ordinator means they are taken care of without you having to get involved – they provide priceless peace of mind so you can enjoy your big day to the full.
Hopefully we’ve given you some useful food for thought here. Personally, we believe that there’s nothing more romantic, exciting and fulfilling as planning your own wedding. But if you are going to take on such a project, one of our wedding planning books will prove invaluable. As well as a wealth of tips and budget savvy advice it includes an 18 month countdown calendar, comprehensive reminder checklists and plenty of dedicated pages to record details of appointments, trials, fittings, vendors, food tastings and more.
More than 350,000 brides have successfully planned and managed their own celebrations with our book – with all the expert input and practical guidance they needed.
Now what are you waiting for? Get planning Your Perfect Day!