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What to look for in a wedding coordinator, and do you need one?

Wedding Schedule by OneTenStationary. Order from their ETSY shop here.

Some women love planning and being in control of every detail of their wedding day without hiring a wedding coordinator. If that is you, consider 1) if you will have the time, 2) if you will be able to enjoy your wedding day without becoming overwhelmed by all the details, and 3) if you have room in your budget to hire help and gain peace of mind by handing some responsibility over to a professional. (By the way, if you do decide to hire a wedding coordinator, you still have control over the details—you will also have someone with experience to help you realize your vision, save you time, and possibly save you money). If you are thinking about hiring a wedding coordinator we put together some basic information to help you make your decision. 

Wedding coordinators usually offer different levels of service including: consulting, day-of coordinating, or full service planning. Our research shows that California brides who decided to hire a wedding coordinator typically went with Day-of-coordinating (DOC) services with the average price range of $1200-$2500. What does DOC service include? The answer to this question is one you should be sure to get in writing, as there is no industry standard. Typically, with DOC service, you will handle selecting and contacting vendors on your own, possibly with some advice and recommendations from the coordinator. With DOC services, their main responsibility is to take care of the wedding day itself so you can concentrate on getting ready and enjoying your day. Coordinator should have all vendor names and contact info at hand, prepare a wedding day schedule and ensure that vendors, bridal party, and those involved in the wedding have received a copy or have been notified of when they are to arrive, set up, and leave. The coordinator should take care of any surprises that arise, ensure the day runs smoothly and details are taken care of, and coordinate the day’s events to the timeline.

Some benefits of hiring a coordinator include: saving you time and possibly money with some great recommendations and an insider relationship with vendors they like and trust; ideas to help you stick to your budget; and relief from the stress that can come with planning a detailed and important event. Some down sides to hiring a coordinator are: the cost. If money is really tight, consider hiring a friend who was recently married to help you through the process and on the day of your wedding. There are also tons of online resources like wedding planning checklists, how to articles on making a budget, and sample wedding schedules for you to review and use. Ask your friends and acquaintances for referrals, or even other vendors you like. Just give your self plenty of time! Also, before you begin your wedding coordinator search, you may want to check with the ceremony and reception site you’ve selected to find out if DOC services are included in their package price. There are a lot of glowing reviews from brides who have utilized on-site coordinators.

If you do decide to hire a coordinator, do it asap. Most only do one wedding a day and their schedules fill up fast! Get recommendations, visit websites, read testimonials, and reach out to potential coordinators with personalized email messages or phone calls. Decide which aspects of planning and coordinating you want help help with and be specific, this will give the coordinators you interview a better idea of what you need and what it will cost you if you decide to use their services. Find out how they charge, hourly or by package pricing. Feel them out and make sure they are enthusiastic about your wedding, reply promptly and politely, and are available and able to meet your requests and work within your budget. Again, be sure to get in writing, the services they will be responsible for providing, and don’t be afraid to ask about their organization process or to check in with them when you have questions.


Hope this helps! Congratulations to all our wonderful brides and grooms-to-be!  

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