I have been so blessed over the past 5+ years to be a Scottsdale and destination wedding photographer! From my experience in shooting destination weddings or weddings in my own backyard of Scottsdale, Arizona – the #1 advice that I have for my couples is … hire a wedding planner.
There are so many benefits to hiring a wedding planner. From saving $, to hiring the right vendors, to have someone to call when you’re uber stressed out and finally having someone make sure you actually eat on your wedding day – a wedding planner is the best investment that you can make for your special day. With any wedding vendor that you’re going to hire, it is always best to leave it up to the professionals to handle. If you’re not a professional wedding or event planner, step aside and let a highly experienced professional take the reigns on your big day while you can sit back, relax and enjoy the most wonderful day of your life.
While there are many benefits to hiring a planner like I shared above, I wanted to hone in and focus on a few of my key reasons on why you and your boo should hire a wedding planner. These pointers come from my many years in the wedding industry as a destination wedding photographer based out of Scottsdale, Arizona.
1 – Timeline & Flow of Day
One of the most important logistical aspects of your wedding day is the wedding timeline. If you didn’t know that you needed a wedding day timeline or haven’t heard of one – then you should probably hire a planner! Your timeline includes every.single.detail from the moment you wake up in your pretty wedding day PJs to the moment the last gifts and cards are loaded into your parent’s car at the end of the night. It is imperative that you coordinate a wedding day timeline with your photographer, venue, DJ, caterer, etc. All of the main events of your wedding require input or detail from each of these vendors. If the timeline isn’t organized and communicated thoroughly with all of your wedding vendors, that is where disasters can occur.
Additionally, it is important that your wedding party also understands the timeline so they know where they need to be and when for hair and makeup, pictures, rehearsal, marriage license signing and more. Your wedding planner will give you strategic advice from years of experience for things like when hair and makeup will start, what time your ceremony should begin due to the sun setting, how you can cut down time during the reception activities to clear more room for dancing, etc. Most of these important details can be overlooked if you’re not a seasoned and experienced wedding planner.
If you don’t hire a wedding planner, sometimes that role can be placed on other professionals (usually the photographer) which hinders their ability to do what they are hired to do. For example, if I have to track down family members during cocktail hour for your family photos, we won’t be able to get those sunset photos that you want due to time. Or it could add stress to you as the bride or groom, which is not supposed to be a focus for the wedding day.
2 – Decor & Design
Again, ask yourself, when was the last time you planned an event to the scale of your wedding? While you might be the hostess with the most at your dinner parties and girls’ nights, your wedding is a whole other level of hosting! You’ll want to wow your guests with a beautiful setting and decor that can only be sourced from the best vendors in your area. Guess who has relationships with all of the rental companies? Wedding planners. Who can put together a mood board with their eyes closed? Wedding Planners. Who can save you $$ and know where to source those beautiful rose gold chargers that you must have for your wedding? Wedding Planners. Trust me, if you’re looking for a blog worthy wedding to be published on Style Me Pretty , Wedding Chicks or The Knot, you’ll want to hire a wedding planner!
3 – Budget
Your wedding may be one of the biggest investments of you and your fiance’s lives yet! You’ll want to make sure that you’re spending your money responsibly and not overpaying or under estimating your wedding budget. With all of the little costs that add up, it is very common for couples to go quickly over budget. Staying on budget can be extremely difficult and can lead to stress and strain in your relationship. We definitely don’t want that! Your wedding planner can suggest ways to save or possibly work his or her relationships with certain vendors to give you a discount! Some wedding planners can even pay for themselves with the discounts that they can get you with certain wedding vendors. While the upfront cost of a wedding planner might feel like an unnecessary cost, the reward and benefit of saving money, time and sanity is priceless.
4 – Vendor Recommendations
Not only can your wedding planner’s relationships help save you money, but your wedding planner will also recommend trusted, insured, experienced and highly sought after wedding professionals. Your wedding can very easily turn into dismay if the right professionals aren’t hired. Could you imagine hiring a wedding florist who is new and didn’t realize your flowers would instantly wilt in the Arizona heat? What if your caterer that you hired didn’t bring cake plates and there was nothing to serve your cake? Hiring a wedding planner will connect you to wedding professionals who will show up on time and do their job with a smile on their face and above your expectations! Again, there is no price on making sure you have the right professionals for your most special day.
5 – Experience
In my opinion, nothing can trump years of wedding planning experience. There are so many aspects of planning your big day that you simply won’t know the first time around. From how many months to send your save the dates, to processional order, to wedding etiquette – your wedding planner will know the answer to all of your wedding related questions. You can’t put a price tag on years of experience, knowledge and insight on how to make your wedding day be flawless.
On another note, if you ever sat down a wedding planner and ask the about wedding nightmares or horror stories he or she has experienced, you could probably write a book! This isn’t meant to scare you, but to educate you on the fact that wedding planners have literally been through and seen it all. From drunken bridesmaids disasters to missing wedding cakes to DJS that don’t show up for the reception – a wedding planner most likely has experienced every potential disaster that could happen on your wedding day. In these instances, your wedding planner will be armed with a network of professionals that can save the day or with a cool-calm-collect vibe that you might be missing if your bridesmaid is passed out on the couch in the bridal salon before the ceremony (this is a real life experience, no joke!).
By now I’m sure you’re confident that you need to hire a wedding planner (and I applaud you for that!). If you’re looking for an Arizona wedding planner, check out a few of my friends!
I stand behind all of these wedding planning companies and am confident that you will truly love working with these wedding planners!