Have you thought about hiring a wedding planner? Here are five reasons why you should hire a wedding planner or coordinator. Plus, learn the difference between a wedding planner, coordinator & designer. Find the best option for you and your wedding!
One big day. Years of dreaming, months of planning, and weeks of obsessing. All for one special day. One of the most memorable days of your life.
There are venues to walk through, cakes to taste, gowns to try on, and much more — all during the engagement period.
How do couples begin to wrangle in all the ideas, places, and people needed for a wedding?
Many are opting to hire a wedding planner! In fact, 27% of US brides did in 2018 — day of coordinators being most popular.
In this article you’ll find:
- Why hire a wedding planner or coordinator?
- The difference between a wedding planner, coordinator, and designer
- How soon should you hire a wedding planner?
- How much does a wedding planner or coordinator cost in Montana?
- Questions to ask before hiring a wedding planner
Why Hire A Wedding Planner or Coordinator?
Many couples skip hiring a wedding planner due to the added cost – but you’ll find there are so many ways to customize the right package for you and your budget. Not to mention, the value an expert adds can certainly outweigh the cost.
Here are five big reasons you should consider hiring a wedding planner or coordinator.
#1 Fully enjoy your day
Opting for a package that includes day of coordination will allow you to relax and enjoy your day. After all, it’s your big day – you should soak it all in!
Coordinators will make sure all details and logistics are covered – from setup to tear down. All questions will be directed to them, and you won’t be bombarded.
For couples who have both the ceremony and reception at the same location, a skilled coordinator will be familiar with the venue and can quickly flip a room without missing a beat.
Instead of the bride and groom (or guests!) helping move chairs from the great outdoors to the reception hall, you can be celebrating with guests and taking photos while the coordinator is busy accommodating for the next scene.
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“I look back on the day and think of all the things that needed to be in place at certain times, things that needed to be moved or adjusted after use, and of course the inevitable tear-down and box-up process, and it was ALL taken care of. Everything! In the moment I didn’t worry about a thing. I was able to FULLY enjoy my day and that was the ultimate gift.”
-Sterling Butler, a bride who hired Love the Day Of — a mom & daughter Day of Wedding Coordinator duo of Billings, Montana.
This may be the only reason you need to look into a planner or coordinator for your wedding day!
#2 Your guests can fully enjoy your day too
Most brides have their #squad to assist, whether it’s a band of bridesmaids, mothers, aunts, sisters, and close friends. The term ‘it takes a village’ probably stemmed from wedding planning.
When your squad is in charge, they are spending more time directing traffic, setting up & tearing down and answering guest questions when they should be doing what they do best – celebrating the bride and groom!
Quaking Aspen Ranch in Absarokee, Montana | Photo credit: Entenmann Photography
#3 You just don’t have time to do the planning
Planning a wedding can turn into a full-time job. For brides that already have a career, a fiancé, a family, and a social life – adding wedding planning to an already packed schedule can sometimes become a burden.
#4 You’re having a destination wedding
Planners and day of coordinators can be lifesavers when it comes to planning a destination or out-of-town wedding.
You can depend on planners to know the local vibes and serve as an incredible resource for recommending lodging, travel options, and local activities for your guests to enjoy. After all, it may be a vacation for them too!
Planners will also be aware of significant events occurring around your wedding date. Getting married in May during graduation weekend or a major concert headliner may wreak havoc on your guests’ accommodations.
With a wedding planner’s guidance and a knack for forecasting, the odds of guest enjoyment pre and post-wedding are in their favor!
Perhaps most importantly are a planner’s relationships with local wedding venues and vendors. Trustworthy, reliable vendors are priority one, and vendor selection in a foreign town may pose a challenge. Having a trusted advisor able to make recommendations based on experience helps pave the way to a successful big day.
Red Lodge, Montana | Photo credit: Biddle Photography
#5 You’ll have access to their resources
When you work with a wedding planner, you’ll have access to their knowledge and experience. Likely, they’ve planned hundreds of weddings, and you’ll benefit from all of their expertise.
All of the details
Big day, millions of details. As a bride, it can be challenging to plan for them all.
Wedding planners thrive on all the little details! From an organized seating chart to fine-tuning the color palette down to the timing of each toast. A wedding planner is truly a remarkable resource for capturing all the unique details that make your wedding exceptional.
Planners are experts on both helping to create a budget – and sticking to it!
They can help provide realistic cost expectations and provide additional oversight that you may overlook.
In addition to the main wedding expenses – the venue, catering, and attire – many of the smaller details add up. Here are examples of questions planners may ask to help determine the added costs:
- Does the venue provide tables, chairs, lighting, ceremony seating, or do you need to rent them separately?
- Does the caterer have food minimums?
- Does the venue offer bundle discounts for catering/lodging/bar services?
- Will your gown need alterations?
- Will you purchase the bridal party’s attire, or will they pay for their own?
- Will you need to pay for any vendor travel or lodging?
You are probably thinking – do wedding planners really save you money? The right planner with the right connections and experience can help you save money overall.
Many seasoned planners have excellent working relationships with venues and vendors. They may receive special pricing you may not receive when booking on your own.
Planners will also know when vendor bids come back too high. And will be able to negotiate on your behalf or help you find a replacement better in line with your budget. They’ll also advise on decisions along the way – preventing money from being spent on non-essentials.
One of a planner’s greatest assets is their vendor connections. An experienced planner will have the working knowledge of both a vendor’s reputation as well as their personal working experiences with them.
Planners also get to know their vendors’ personalities and can match you with vendors that fit your personality and style.
Contracts and agreements with vendors can be stressful. Planners can help you manage and negotiate. They are familiar with contract language, specific details on what the vendor will provide, and what the couple’s responsibilities entail.
You’ll get help with what questions to ask, and most importantly, can advise on any necessary adjustments along the way.
Planners and coordinators wear many hats and can encompass additional duties not necessarily required of the traditional planning role.
They may serve as officiants, consult on ceremony and reception design, offer set up and tear down services, provide party rentals, and an array of many other services.
Bundling additional services may save brides time, money, and mixups by having less vendor involvement.
To name a few –
- Patricia Clark Weddings of Billings, Montana offers Planning Services and Officiating
- Sharp Events & Decor of Helena, Montana offers Planning Services and Custom Decor Services
- Bijou Weddings by Design of Bozeman, Montana provides Coordination Services, Event Design, and Florals
What is the Difference Between a Wedding Planner, Coordinator, and Designer?
Knowing the difference between a wedding planner, wedding coordinator, and wedding designer will help you find the right choice for your wedding.
Planners typically help brides from start to finish. They’ll help you choose a venue, recommend vendors, handle the budget, review contracts, and much more. The amount of involvement depends on the package you want – full-service planning or a customized package to fit your needs.
Hire a wedding planner for help with the entire planning process, rehearsal coordination, day of coordination, and even event design.
Coordinators (also called day of or month of coordinators) make sure day of logistics and details are handled. They take over about one month before the wedding day and review all the small details, timeline, and confirm vendors. They may even cover the rehearsal and provide consultations.
Hire a coordinator if you feel confident in your planning skills, but need help with the small details & logistics.
Wedding designers are responsible for the entire look and feel of your wedding. From venue floor design to color palettes, decor, stationery, and more, they’ll take over your design budget and coordinate with related vendors.
Look to hire a designer if you want help achieving a theme or cohesive, well thought out wedding design.
How soon should you hire a wedding planner or coordinator?
As soon as possible! When wedding planners are involved early on in the process, they can do what they do best – help plan your dream wedding! When hired early on, planners can:
- Have more availability for scheduling your wedding date
- Advise on vendor and venue selection
- Help you with the budget
- Have more time to help you plan your dream day!
How much does a wedding planner (or coordinator) cost in Montana?
Costs for Montana wedding planners and coordinators can vary greatly. You can expect day of coordination and wedding design packages to start at $750 and above. While partial and full planning packages start at $1,500 and higher.
The more your wedding planner is involved, the hirer you can expect to pay (design, planning, rehearsal, day of coordination, setup, and tear down). A more seasoned planner will naturally be more expensive with experience.
Other related expenses to consider:
- Travel – will your planner or coordinator relocate for the day of your wedding
- Lodging – if you are paying for transportation, do you also need to pay for a hotel
Use our Montana wedding planner and coordinator directory and filter by your maximum budget.
Questions to ask before hiring
- What services do you provide, and do you offer different packages depending on need?
- Is there a flat fee, hourly rate, or both?
- Do you review and manage vendor contracts?
- Are you available the entire day of my wedding?
- Are you available for the rehearsal dinner?
- How long have you been in business?
- Do you have associates that will be helping onsite?
- Are set up and tear down services provided?
- Do you receive any commissions from vendors for referrals?
Is a Wedding Planner Right for You?
When determining whether to hire or not, remember a planner has been through the planning stages many times, worked meticulously with the venue and vendors, and bases their reputation by how well they can execute your big day.
From full-service wedding planning to day of coordination, you can find the best option that will fit your needs and your budget!
Search our Montana wedding directory to discover wedding planners and coordinators ready to bring your wedding vision to life.