I have heard this one time and time again. "Well my venue already has a planner and they have been more than helpful". Well that may be true and take it from someone who has plenty of venue experience they are incredible individuals and very handy for the planning process of your wedding. However, pay attention to their actual title :"Venue Coordinator". That person has been contracted by the venue to work for that venue. Yes of course your wedding is priority for that day. I plan to help you understand the huge difference and need for a personal wedding coordinator and how both your venue and personal wedding planners can work together, compliment each others value and offer you the best wedding your heart desires.
So I wouldn't expect most brides or clients to already know this, thus prompted me with the ambition for the blog. I too would jump at the opportunity to save a little here and there. Especially when planning something as large scale as a wedding. However sacrifices should be thought through and made plain. Understand what your venue coordinator is going to do for you throughout your planning process and your wedding. I have worked with plenty that are awesome, but always consider they are a venue. A lot of events are taking place that weekend or that day. Sometimes a few in the same day, exactly how focused can that person be to every detail of your wedding day? Certainly not as keenly as your personal wedding coordinator whom has been helping you and coaching you from day one of the planning process.
Here are a few examples of things your personal wedding planner will cater to that your venue coordinator is not paid to do.
1. Monitor your overall wedding budget.
Whether you hired for day of assistance or start to completion wedding planning and coordination. Your experienced and professional wedding planner should always be cautious and caring of your wedding budget and that you are not breaking the bank in some areas that you shouldn't. Your venue planner already sold your wedding package and with any and all upgrades you can stand. I hate to be the one to break it to you that your budget is not their primary concern.
2. Assist you in saying yes to the dress.
Of course you don't want to take this moment away from your bridal party or mother they are more than welcome to join and bring the champagne. However in this day and age some brides love the opinion and suggestions from a wedding planner with style and taste to give their wedding that something extra. Your dress is very important. It should match your mood, body, wedding theme and most of all personality. Truth be told your maid of honor may not give you her most honest opinion and mom loves you in anything you put on. Sometimes a paid opinion is the best opinion... value will never steer you in the wrong direction. Needless to say your venue coordinator is stationary to their venue and most likely won't be present for dress selection.
3. Vendor management and timelines
I apologize in advance but your venue coordinator is not going to manage any outside vendors you may have contracted for your wedding. More often then not the venue has offered their own recommendations or accommodations in place of that vendor. Should you decide to not be inclusive there is a good chance all that outside vendor is going to get from your venue is an address. They will not coordinate set-up times or break down times or tell anyone where to go. Yes, they expect you to take care of all that in your wedding dress the day of your wedding if you haven't already done so. Sure you can get away with asking your sisters or cousins to help delegate everyone but doesn't that take the joy away from them being an actual guest at your wedding? My business niche is "Simply enjoy your guests and allow us to handle the rest". That phrase came with many years of experience, trial and error. Trust that. Adding to that a good wedding organizer knows the importance of a day of timeline. Each vendor should have a copy at least a day prior to your wedding and agree to the terms and times allotted for them to successfully complete their service.
Your venue will most likely have their own generic timeline. Something they have created that works for them and goes well with the flow of things for their facility. I am a fan of structure and there is nothing wrong with that other than the difference of duplication verses originality. Your wedding is exactly that. Your wedding, your moments and your memories . My business and other personal event planners strive to keep the day all yours and every bit of it derived from your dreams for your own special wedding day. Your personal wedding planner will assure that your day is your day just the way we planned it.
Take it from me as a former bride and current wedding and special occasion coordinator there are so many things that go into planning your perfect wedding day and there are many different roles and positions to be filled to allow everything to run smoothly. I love venue planners, I was one and they are incredibly helpful to the bride, her planner and the venue. I wrote this blog not to bash venue coordinators but to show that you will definitely benefit from having both working together as a team. I only mentioned three major examples where a personal planner can help where a venue coordinator can not, keep in mind there is so much more. To name some important tasks; seating charts, guest lists, RSVP's, invitations, vendor meetings, coordinating family, hotel arrangements, pre-wedding festivities, to do lists for the bride, keeping tabs on the groom and groomsmen, day of direction, crafting centerpieces, setting out favors, remembering moms keepsakes.... Trust me this list could go on and on but I believe you get the picture.
So plan in perfect harmony with your venue coordinator, your personal wedding planner, all of your bridal party adorn with the rest of your vendors. I guarantee your wedding will be just perfect and lacking in no area. Simply enjoy your guests and allow your wedding day team to handle the rest. All of us!