Ideally, you are only supposed to hold one wedding in a lifetime, thus making it a very important day for the bride and the groom. Most importantly, it should be a special day for the guests too.
All this depends on how well you plan the wedding. You can leave your guests impressed or disdained, with a bad taste in their mouths. Is planning a wedding hard? It definitely is not a feat for the faint of heart but hey, it is a huge event.
Here are seven tips to help you plan that wedding as a professional event manager:
1) Be Friends With The Vendors
Wedding and event vendors have a lot of helpful information to give you, so you had better be very friendly with them. They also know other vendors and this can make the search for services very easy. For example, a wedding photographer might know the best wedding florist. Speak out, say what you need; you will get a lot of free advice.
2) Bargain For Discounts
Do not fall for a this-is-the-standard-rate-in-the-market slogan. In every service that you will pay for the wedding, there is always room for discounts. You will be surprised to know how much money people miss just because they do not ask for discounts. Thus, ask for an extra fifteen or thirty minutes from the band performing at the wedding, or extra minutes from the videographer.
Remember, a small discount is better than no discount. You can save big on wedding furniture if you look out for the best rental companies around you and compare the prices before finalizing one. Always know the best places to rental furniture and choose your wedding furniture yourself.
3) Make The Wedding Budget Right
Make your wedding budget and then stick by it, whatever may come your way. You will need enough time for setting up the budget alone for believing me, it is a big feat and it will make the difference between failure and success.
On a rough note, this is how you should plan your budget:
- Reception – 50 percent of the budget
- Flowers – 10 percent of the budget
- Entertainment – 10 percent
- Photos and video – 12 percent
- Invites – 3 percent
- Gifts – 3 percent
- Miscellaneous – 8 percent
- Unforeseen expenses – 4 percent
4) Get Your Guests Right
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The wedding is actually more about guests than it is about the bride and groom. Get the sitting right, going by order of priority.
For example, the immediate family should sit immediately behind the bridal party followed by the extended families, and finally, friends. Take time to make the guest list because, by the time you revise it for the third time, you will find that most of the people on the list do not need to be there. However, as you drop guests, start with friends, coworkers and so on. Sometimes, a family is untouchable.
5) Book For Stuff En Masse …
This means booking hotels for groups rather than for individuals, as you will get to enjoy awesome group discounts. However, make sure to release the rooms that cannot be filled and this is something that you should discuss with the hotel management. You do not want to pay penalties for any unfilled rooms. Avoid hotels that require you to pay a penalty for cancellations.
6) Point The Guests The Right Way
Getting lost on your way to a wedding and missing the moment the ring slips on the finger is not fun. That would be nasty! You can make a map for your guests and upload it on the wedding website, where the guests can download/print it.
You should also choose the most probable route with less traffic on the day of the wedding. Mostly, the reception and wedding ceremony venues will give you maps to the place and then you can give the same maps to your guests.
7) Mind The Drinks
Running the bar effectively is very important. Thus, whatever cocktails and drinks can be mixed in advance, let them be mixed. For better service, make sure to have the number of bartenders that is commensurate with the number of guests. This should be one bartender for every 50 guests. Any more guests than that and the queues will drag.