Wedding consultant, coordinator, planner, what?!

There are many different names for professionals who plan weddings and many different responsibilities and obligations they take on. Whether the person you hire to plan your wedding refers to themselves as a planner, a coordinator, or a consultant one thing is for certain: They are helping you put together one of the most important days of your life. So what does this mean for you? It means you need to do a little planning to plan.

Before you start interviewing for the best candidate, make sure you know what you want them to do for you. Most wedding consultants will provide a few options of services to select from. You can hire a wedding planner who comes in and does everything for you; booking venues, coordinating with vendors throughout the year, and managing wedding day events. Or you can simply hire a “Day Of” Coordinator, who would come in later and do more last-minute details such as manage the rehearsal and coordinate with the bridal party and vendors on the day of the wedding. Either way, it will be much easier for you to find the help you need if you know what you are looking for. You should also make sure to have a really good idea of what kind of wedding you want to have. The more thoroughly you explain what you are looking for, the easier it will be for your planner to execute your vision.

But how do you know what you want? With many choices to choose from, how do you decide which is the best option for you? You should first consider what you are working with. Do you have an excellent Maid of Honor? Someone who is naturally organized and responsible? Or a relatively large and helpful family and a bunch of great bridesmaids? You may decide you don’t even want or need professional assistance.

Are you someone who is really excited about the concept of putting together your wedding because, hey this is the day you have been dreaming of since you were a little girl right?! But, at the same time someone who just can’t seem to keep organized and are completely daunted by the idea of calling multiple different contacts for multiple different things? If this sounds like you, consider hiring a wedding planner; someone who you trust to do all the work for you. Remember what I said before about explaining to them exactly what you want though. Allowing someone complete trust to plan your entire wedding can be pretty nerve-wracking, but if you know you have given them all the details they could possibly need and feel absolutely confident in that, then you should be able to relax and allow them to take care of your needs.

What if it’s not necessarily that you’re overwhelmed by planning the wedding, but that you have a crazy aunt, in-law, mother, or relative that you think you just might need the help of a professional to reign in? A good wedding coordinator can be both organized and charming enough to have everything in order AND keep frustrating relatives from driving you completely batty on your big day. If you think this might be what you need, you should consider hiring a “Day of” coordinator and make sure you let them know up front about those “specific” relatives.

Have you considered your budget? You should have by now. If you are at the point of interviewing for wedding planner, you probably have a pretty good idea of what your finances look like. If not, sit down and figure it out before you go any further. If you know how tight your budget is, staying within the constraints of it will be that much easier. This may be your most important detail and you might even consider hiring your planner based on their ability to help you stay within your budget. I have mentioned before that before you even start the process of planning your wedding you should make a list of your wants and needs for the wedding and rank them in order of importance. If your budget is your number one priority, you may want a wedding planner there for you helping you every step of the way, pointing out small costs which most people forget about but that end up adding up, and helping you find ways to save. And if you haven’t made that list of wedding day priorities a good wedding planner would be able to help you with that too.

Whatever you decide, make sure you are happy with your decision and remind yourself to relax. While it can be extremely hectic to put together a wedding, you should always try to remember that you are doing it because of love!