5 Tips for Choosing Wedding Suppliers
If you want a good and fuss-free wedding, you’ve got to make sure you have an army of wedding suppliers you trust. Believe me on this one. Getting the right suppliers can make or break a wedding day.
Wedding Suppliers | 5 Quick Tips
1. Know Your #1 Non-Negotiable
When I started planning our wedding 2 years ago, I had one non-negotiable item in mind. I had to “feel” something in the venues we’d be in — both the Church and the reception. Having a clear concept of a non-negotiable helps in narrowing down the decisions. For me, it wasn’t enough that my venues be pretty and within my budget. They had to make me “feel” something. They had to feel right.
Once I had my venues picked out and reserved, everything else followed through, albeit bit by bit. It took me a (long) while to have everything settled. To be honest, I was still finalizing suppliers and details about a week before the wedding. All this while nursing a fever and a cold. That being said, don’t forget to take your vitamins, brides. Wedding stress can be a pain sometimes.
2. Gather Portfolios
When choosing a wedding supplier, my number one advice is to ask for their portfolio first thing. Check their websites, attend food tastings and bridal fairs, research on reviews of past clients, and don’t be afraid to ask around.
Personally, I have a ton of friends who are either (1) getting engaged/married or (2) attending a lot of weddings, so I got good tips from them. Also, if you feel stumped, ask for recommendations on social media. That way, you can message your friend directly if you have other questions.
3. Check Your Budget
Now that you’ve got their portfolios, you have an idea of the services you can receive within a certain price range. Some wedding suppliers have a big following, so they’ve earned the right to charge as much as 6 figures for their service. By all means, if you’ve got the cash to spend and are absolutely in love with their work, go right ahead and book them right away. Their schedules can get pretty tight.
Working on a tight budget but in love with a certain supplier’s business? Get in touch with them and see if they’ll be attending any bridal fairs soon. Some suppliers slash a good amount of their prices if you book at a fair.
4. Decide on Your Wedding Elements
Some couples prefer a quartet at their wedding, while others would do for a sound system and a playlist. Some choose to have plated service for all their guests, while others prefer to add more expenses for their dream videographer. This is where knowing your wedding elements come in handy.
Once you’ve narrowed down the things you and your partner want in your wedding, rank them according to budget priority. Take note of prospective suppliers and their packages. That way, it'll be easier to compare based on the things they offer. For example, when I was on the hunt for a video team, I had two choices in mind.
Option A was cheaper by Php30,000 BUT option B had a package inclusive of an SDE, a 15-minute wedding film, and a full documentary. I chose the latter because I ranked documentation high on my list of priorities. Long story short, I didn’t want to forget anything. However, since I allocated a higher fee for my videographers, I had to change other elements in my wedding.
Do we need a DJ? Well, not really. The venue needs to be empty by 10:30 pm anyway.
Should we get a photo booth? Nah, we're not fans of having our guests line up for photos.
Do we really need 100 bottles of wine for 150 guests? UHM NO.
5. Read and Negotiate for the Contracts
This should already go without saying, but the number of wedding contracts can be overwhelming. So it can be reaaaaaally tempting to just skim through some of the details. DON’T.
These contracts have the full details of what your supplier will deliver. It’ll talk about the number of photos your photographers will post process. It’ll mention if there are extra charges for added wine glasses and bar service. It’ll also provide payment dates and details to put in your planner -- especially since some suppliers charge a fee if you pay a day late.
Also, it’s good to remember that contracts can be negotiable. A little tug and push can provide your wedding a full dessert buffet at no extra charge. You might even get additional fees waived via an email thread, phone call, or in-person discussion. Just have the necessary additions and agreements well documented. Don’t forget to have them added to the contracts as well to make sure you’re fully covered.
I’ve experienced firsthand how the world of wedding planning can be crazy and I've lived to tell the tale. To be honest, the first time I went to a bridal fair, I had so much anxiety. I left with bags filled to the brim with brochures, a dazed expression on my face, and a mind thinking, “what the heck have I gotten myself into?”
But hey, if I got through our wedding with a big smile on my face and a heart full of love, I’m pretty sure you can do the same too!