Three Important Wedding Planning Basics to Consider
So, you have proposed or been proposed to. This is great news! You and your partner are showing the ultimate commitment to one another and will be able to enjoy a life together for the foreseeable future. But first, you need to actually get to the wedding.
Planning a wedding is a gargantuan task. It’s something that many of us look forward to, but also something that can place a lot of pressure on us. It’s a good idea to be fully prepared for what you have coming up in order to ensure that your wedding goes exactly as you’d like.
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Here are a few tips and tricks that can help get the ball rolling – hopefully, in the right direction for you!
Wedding Planning Basics #1 – Should You Use a Wedding Planner?
The first question that you might want to ask yourself when planning a wedding is whether you want to use the services of a wedding planner or not. By answering this question, you can then determine what you need to do yourself in regards to the lead up to the big day. Put simply, a wedding planner is a professional who will take all the work and responsibility of wedding planning from your shoulders. Rather than having to arrange everything yourself, they will do everything on your behalf.
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Of course, there are different levels to wedding planning. You could have someone who just helps you with the big things, like venue, photography and flowers, or someone who helps with every minute detail, right down to truly engaging wedding invitations. Here are some of the perks to using a wedding planner that you may want to draw into consideration.
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The Benefits of Using a Wedding Planner
- Reduced Responsibility – planning a wedding can be stressful. It takes time, effort and a whole lot of work. Having someone do this on your behalf can reduce stress in your own life, freeing up time for you and your beloved to actually enjoy your engagement without burning yourselves out.
- Reduced Costs – sure, using a wedding planner costs money in itself – and when they make their quote, the sum may seem pretty high. But when it comes down to it, a wedding planner can help to cut the costs of your wedding significantly. First and foremost, they can help you to avoid making costly mistakes through inexperience.
They also tend to have good relationships with suppliers they use regularly, so can negotiate deals that you might not have been able to organise yourself. They also know contracts in and out, so know what should and shouldn’t be in them. This can help you to avoid additional costs or penalties that you might otherwise fall prey to.
- Contacts – as we briefly mentioned above, wedding planners use wedding suppliers; services regularly. This means that they already know which suppliers are good, which are bad and have useful links within the industry to get what you want. They can call in favours and get priority when it comes to bookings, helping you to get the services you want on your big day without struggling and bartering.
- Organisation – organising a wedding creates a lot of tasks to complete. There’s a lot to schedule and ensuring that everything runs alongside everything else well can be a big task. Wedding planners will create all of the required schedules for the run up to the wedding to help ensure everything is ordered, booked and organised in time.
They can also come up with the schedule for the big day itself, ensuring there’s order to events and that everyone knows where they should be and what they should be doing at any given time. They can also schedule suppliers, making sure that elements such as flowers, catering, photography and more are taken care of, with suppliers knowing what needs to be provided and when.
- Sticking to Budget – every wedding has a budget and when you plan yourself, you may fail to stick to the budget and find yourself overspending to ensure that you have everything you want for the day. All wedding planners know exactly what is needed for the day, so won’t face unexpected or unanticipated costs down the line. This means they can budget properly from the start, helping you to stick to your budget and avoid overspending.
- Perfectionism – when you plan your wedding yourself, you may cut corners to make things easier for yourself. When your wedding planner plans your wedding, they are being paid to do so and it’s their full time job, so they can dedicate time and effort to this. This ensures perfectionism, as the wedding planner wants good reviews and a stunning portfolio. You can guarantee that your wedding will be closer to what you have in mind when brought together by a planner as opposed to yourself.
- A Neutral Party – believe it or not, weddings can create tensions between family members and friends. People may butt heads over proceedings and may become stubborn regarding their own role and position within the wedding. A wedding planner can act as a good, neutral, mediator in this. They will have experience in negotiating with troublesome parties within the wedding and can help come to compromises that suit everyone fairly.
- Experience and Advice – wedding planners have seen it all. They know what works. They know what doesn’t work. They can help to curb any ideas you have that they know from experience don’t go as expected. They can help steer you away from disaster and guide you on a path that does work and that will go well. They have insight that you won’t, having experienced countless weddings that they have organised.
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Wedding Planning Basics #2 – Choosing a Location
Of course, whether you use a wedding planner or not, you’re going to have to choose a location for your wedding. In the past, people would generally host their wedding in the nearest church or venue.
However, nowadays, people have more options available to them and may want to consider something a little different. Whether to host a wedding close to home, further from home or overseas will depend entirely on you and your guest list. Each option comes hand in hand with pros and cons, so make sure to consider all aspects of the decision before settling on anything.
Weddings Close to Home
The benefit of having a wedding close to home is that you are in familiar surroundings. You know the ins and outs of the area and will have a good understanding of which venues are good and which are bad. You can determine things like whether the venue will likely have a lot of road noise, whether it’s in a good and safe area and other factors.
Close to home generally also means that it will be convenient for the majority of your friends and family to attend. They won’t have to worry about transport costs, paying for accommodation, taking extra time off work and other factors that they might have if you got married further afield.
Having a wedding overseas can be exciting. You can choose a truly stunning location with almost guaranteed good weather. The downside of weddings overseas tends to be the cost for guests. Your guests will find themselves having to pay for flights or other means of transport, accommodation and will have to book annual leave and time off other responsibilities. They may also have to arrange childcare and petcare. On top of this, vulnerable individuals you care about, who are too unwell or frail to fly, may not be able to attend.
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Wedding Planning Basics #3 – Choosing a Venue
Once you know your location, you can start to choose your venue. This will dictate other elements of the wedding day too, such as capacity so how many people can invite. There are countless venues out there and anywhere that has a wedding licence will be suitable. Some popular options tend to include:
- Religious venues
- Hotels and manors
- Country houses
Of course, you don’t have to choose these venues. Nowadays, people do everything, some even get married underwater in scuba gear! Whatever venue you settle on, it’s important to start viewings as early on as possible. Many desirable venues have waiting lists, which means you need to get on them sooner rather than later to secure the space you want.
Viewing a venue really is essential though. Remember that websites tend to show venues in their best light. They also don’t show elements such as the surrounding area, noise levels, smells and more. They could feature old photos from when the venue was newly made, rather than current and up to date photos. Only by visiting can you get a real feel for the space. This goes for overseas weddings too! Make sure to visit and check it out, even if it is a long way. At the end of the day, the amount of money you’re spending, and the importance of the venue for the wedding itself, makes it more than worth the effort.
These, of course, are just a few starter steps to arranging your wedding. But they are some of the most important. So, take them into consideration and, hopefully, your journey to married life will get off to a good start!
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Photos by Nathan Dumlao – CCO Licence
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