Questions To Ask A Wedding Planner Before Booking Them

Feb 6, 2024

We often say that your wedding planner should feel like your best friend who actually cares about your wedding! They should be someone who understands your vision, knows how to bring it to life, and makes the entire process a breeze. You should also feel completely comfortable with this person. After all, it’s likely they are going to help you through tricky situations during the planning process, and will be part of some very intimate moments on the day of your wedding. Asking the right questions is key to ensuring that you and your wedding planner are a perfect match. As seasoned New Jersey wedding planners, we’ve not only seen it all but also heard every question in the bridal playbook. Trust us, we’ve got the lowdown on which ones are worth the ask and which ones are better left to the imagination! 

If you’re new around here, we’re Well-Dressed Events, New Jersey’s premier style-centric wedding, party, and event planning company. We specialize in high-end, unique events for modern, bold, standout clients and we pride ourselves on cutting-edge, creative design, styling, and event management.

So without further ado, here are the four questions to ask your wedding planner on your consultation call to see if they might be the right fit. In the name of balance, we also included the four questions that aren’t really relevant (but we’ve been asked a lot!).

Questions to Ask:

1. How many hours are you on-site?

Understanding the amount of time your wedding planner will spend on-site the day of your wedding is crucial for seamless coordination. While some wedding planners stay until the very end of the reception, others will offer a designated number of hours. This is a question worth asking before you book so you know what to expect on the wedding day. If they have a designated number of hours, ask how that would shake out in the wedding day timeline. At Well-Dressed Events, the number of hours we’re on site to support you depends on the package you book.

  • We’re on site from your hair and makeup touchups to cake cutting (approximately 7-9 hours) for our day-of coordination package
  • You get WDE on site from your hair and makeup touchups to the last formality i.e. sparkler send off (approximately 8-10 hours) in our partial planning and coordination package
  • Our full service planning and coordination package includes all day, on site support from getting ready to the last formality i.e. sparkler send off (approximately 10 – 12 hours)

We settle on the exact number of hours once we put your day-of timeline together. Of course, we always have additional hours for purchase if you want more support. Regardless of what the planner you’re considering offers, make sure they are committed to overseeing the details from their start time to their end time to ensure that your day unfolds effortlessly.

2. My venue says they provide an event coordinator. Do I really still need a wedding planner?

This is such a good question! We believe bringing in a planner in addition to your venue-provided coordinator is a great idea if (and that’s a big IF) you hire the right planner. The right planner is someone who will value the venue coordinator’s expertise and work with them to ensure the entire day is seamless–not fight with them and create a power struggle. Ask the planner you are considering how they work with venue coordinators to gauge how that dynamic would work. The Well-Dressed answer to that question? We lean on them and take their lead on reception timing, layouts, etc. We also work with them on the wedding day to ensure we’re all on the same page and that everyone shines!

By the way, if you’re still unsure of why you might need a planner in addition to your venue coordinator, check out our recent post, “Why you still need a wedding planner, even if your venue provides an event manager.” It’s got some great tips in there that you may not have thought about!

3. What is the planning process like with you?

Every wedding planner has their own unique process. Ask this question to get a sense of the workflow, milestones, and communication channels. It ensures that you and your planner are on the same page from the get-go, fostering a smooth planning journey. A well-defined process sets expectations and ensures that no detail is overlooked. Don’t forget this is your wedding and you want a planner who matches your vibe every step of the way. 

4. How much experience do you have in the industry?

Experience is the golden ticket to a stress-free wedding planning experience. An experienced wedding planner brings a wealth of industry knowledge, a network of reliable vendors, and the ability to troubleshoot any challenges that may arise. The longer they’ve been doing this, the more crazy sh!t they’ve seen–which means you’re in agile, capable hands that are ready to put out any fires that may arise! You can even ask the planner what their craziest wedding experience was. We’ve got a few of those! From caterers not showing up, to the groom accidentally taking a Xanax instead of an Advil, we’ve literally and are ready for anything.

You should also strongly consider planners with corporate event experience like Well-Dressed Events because they may be more buttoned up and organized in their workflow, and provide a more professional experience overall.

Questions We’d Skip:

1. Have you worked at the venue before?

While venue familiarity can be a bonus, it’s not a make-or-break factor. Wedding planners are skilled at adapting to various venues and creating magical experiences regardless of prior familiarity. Instead of focusing on past venues, inquire about their creative approach to different spaces, ensuring your wedding is uniquely tailored to you.

2. What’s your favorite wedding you’ve planned?

This question may seem like a way to understand their work, but it might not provide meaningful insights into your specific needs. Each couple is unique, and your planner’s favorite might not align with your vision. Instead, discuss your style and their approach to tailoring weddings to individual preferences. You want your wedding to be a reflection of your ensuring your distinctive style and personality in mind. 

3. Can you get me a discount with vendors?

We get asked this a lot, and while negotiating vendor discounts may have been a thing of weddings past, it’s not common in 2024. Instead of focusing on the discounts a planner could get you, engage in discussions about the planner’s process for recommending vendors to you. At Well-Dressed Events, once we understand your style and overall budget, we make vendor recommendations that fit these requirements. We will always guide you on the best place to invest your money, and ensure your vision is executed with the right vendors.

4. Can you replicate this exact wedding I found on Pinterest

Creating an exact replica is a bit like asking for the same rainbow twice. While Pinterest is an amazing way to get inspiration, each wedding is unique, and achieving an exact copy might be tricky, especially with different venues, vendors, and budgets to consider. Instead, let’s chat about all the elements you adore from Pinterest, and together, we’ll conjure up a celebration that’s uniquely yours! Check out our Pinterest Board for some ideas!

Wedding Planner Alternative

If you’re not sure whether you want a planner yet, but still want help getting the ball rolling, consider our Power Planning session! Our Power Planning session is a 2-hour Zoom call where you’ll get a taste of professional expertise without committing to full-service planning. We’ll discuss budgets, vendors, planning checklists, and any burning questions you may have. If you decide after our session that you need more support, as an added bonus, we offer a special discounted rate for our core wedding planning services. To learn more about Power Planning, click here to read the blog!

To Put A Bow On It!

And there you have it- these questions are your secret sauce to finding the planner who not only matches your vibe but turns your wedding dreams into reality. Whether you’re just starting to plan or are already knee-deep in Pinterest boards, choosing a wedding planner is a crucial step. So embrace the excitement, trust the process, and revel in the journey towards your happily ever after! For more wedding tips and information, contact us! Happy planning!

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