Ivan Apfel

Articles and Advice to Hopefully Inspire and Help You Get the Most Out of Your Images.

Get a Second Job? Or hire a Wedding Planner?


While I do not get asked as much as I once did by couples about whether or not they should hire a wedding planner, it does come up from time to time.  

Even though I am a big supporter of hiring a planner, the decision really is up to you. There are certainly some reasons why one may not be right for your event and plenty of reasons why they would be. The only real negatives to hiring a planner is that there is a cost in doing so.  So putting budget aside, I will discuss some of the pluses to having a Day Of or Full Service Planner for your wedding.


Simply put, if you are having a small sub-40 attendee wedding at your home, in a park or at a restaurant, and you tend to be an A-Type personality, then you probably do not need a planner.  If you are having a larger wedding at a venue, then you very well may need a planner. 


Let’s be honest, today most couples include two career minded people.  This does not leave a lot of time for planning a wedding which is essentially another full-time job.  Just like in your career, much of success depends on delegating responsibilities. Planners play that role in your wedding.  You still call all the shots and make all final decisions.  Their job is to sweat all the little things, do your preliminary research on all vendors and venues, make sure all the details you decided on are when and where they are supposed to be, and put out any little fires that will pop up on your wedding day.


When you start looking for a planner, you will need to determine if you need a Day Of Planner or a Full Service Planner.  The major difference is that Day Of is essentially just there on the day of your event to make sure things run smoothly.  The Full Service Planner is there with you the entire planning process as well as the day of your event.  Which one you select should not be based on budget, but based on the size and location of your event, the details involved in your event, and again, whether or not your career can handle adding a second full-time job.  In many ways, the Full Service Planners cost can end up balancing out in the end because…


Just like you know a lot of people in your industry, they know a lot of people in theirs.  This means that instead of you spending weeks researching, meeting and negotiating contracts with all the various vendors; you meet with your planner and based on the vision and desires you discussed with them, they send you a list of the vendor options that match your style, vision and budget.  Once you decide on the ones you want, they will take care of most of the details related to booking them.  Time is money, so the days of work they save you has value to you.

Another way that they can help you is that the relationship they have with these vendors allows them the ability to negotiate some comped items like an engagement session, extra hours of coverage, upgraded lighting, upgrades from well liquor to top shelf liquor, etc.  Again, all things that can save you money making their services balance out in the end. 


While you are hanging with your friends getting your hair and make-up done (or playing golf, watching football or hanging by the pool if you are on the grooms side), the caterers are setting up chairs, tables, plates, candles, linens, silverware, etc. at the reception.  The florist is bringing you your flowers while their team is working on the arrangements at both the ceremony site and the the reception location.  Your photography and videography team is shooting you and your “soon to be” in one or more locations.  Plus all of the other various vendors reporting in at different times. And no matter what, situations, issues and questions at each will come up; often times simultaneously. Your job on your wedding day is to be drinking the cocktail of your choice, relaxing and laughing with family and friends.  It should not be spent running around answering questions, making sure things are being set-up as agreed, checking that every vendor is where they are supposed to be, putting out fires, etc.

Your planner will handle all of these things for you.  They will also make sure that your various vendors know what is happening at each location.  This allows them to know what they need to do, be where they need to be, when they need to be there, and stay focused on making your wedding go off as close to perfection as possible.

And how does this make your wedding day better?  Because instead of spending most of your wedding stressed out, you get to spend it with your family and friends relaxed, smiling, laughing, crying, and dancing. Not only does this create a better wedding experience and memories, but it also allows your photographer and videographer to capture a day full of real smiles, real laughter, real tears, real joy and real love.

So do yourself a favor and reach out to some wedding planners.  In the end, you will not regret it.  I will be happy to give you the names of some incredible planners who can help you based on your wedding location.


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Advice, Wedding




Get a Second Job? Or hire a Wedding Planner?