Just like you would ask a photographer certain questions, the same goes for a wedding planner or coordinator. When brides contact me, I find that most brides don’t know what questions to ask, so here’s my suggestions.
1. Are you available on my wedding date?
You don’t want to waste any more of your time, nor the coordinator’s if they’re not even available on your BIG DAY.
2. How much do you charge for a wedding with (insert the size of your wedding) guests?
Coordinators/planners charge by the size & intricate details of the wedding.
The bigger the size of the wedding, more manpower is needed to set everything up.
3. Does the rate quoted include the price of any additional assistants needed, based on the size of my wedding?
If you’re a bride trying to stay on budget, the planner that you originally thought was an affordable planner, is now appearing not-so-affordable. An extra estimated $150 for each assistant needed can make or break your decision to book them.
4. Does the rate include any parking fees imposed by the ceremony and/or reception venues, if there are any?
This goes for all your vendors, i.e., photographer, videographer, musicians, planner/coordinator are all most likely to charge you an additional estimated $20 each at each venue post-wedding, which can add up to an additional estimated $40 you didn’t consider for a coordinator/planner in your budget.
5. Do you have offer any discounts?
Most wedding vendors and venues don’t advertise this, so always ask about discounts, esp. if you’re military or a first responder. It doesn’t hurt to ask. The worst thing that can happen, is they say no.
6. Can you send me a sample Contract for my specific package, so I can see what it looks like?
It’s one thing for vendors to advertise their services on their website.
But what truly matters, is what’s written in your contract. If certain responsibilities i.e., “setting out escort cards per couple’s specifications” is not listed, guess what? They’re not going to perform that specific function. Never make assumptions about what vendors will do, incl. a day-of / month-of coordinator. They’re only legally obligated to the responsibilities noted in their contract which you countersigned. If you want the day-of coordinator to add another task to their contract, there might an additional charge, so always be aware of that beforehand.
7. What is your security deposit policy?
You need to know the amount needed to secure your BIG DAY before someone else books them.
8. What is your payment policy regarding the remaining balance?
All vendors will require all remaining balances to be paid in full no later than between 10 days – 6 weeks prior to the wedding date. Add up the total remaining balances for all your vendors and mark it on a calendar.Given your current budget and current bills, take into account these remaining wedding expenses which will also need to be paid at about the same time.: / So plan accordingly.
Or hire a planner that helps you spread out the payments via a monthly payment plan...uh-hmmm, Ginger’s Weddings is the only planner that offers this!!! :)
9. Are there any other possible fees I should be aware of, i.e., travel fee?
Some vendors do charge a travel fee, i.e., it's standard for make-up, hair stylists, as do some planners/coordinators. Always ask. Last thing you want, is a surprise expense.
Happy wedding planning!!!