Friday, March 15, 2013

The Wedding Planner

So, there's something about planning a wedding without your mom around.  There's the obvious ones - the no "mother-daughter" dress shopping trip.  The awkwardness of trying to corral family to determine if any of them can even make the trek for a bridal shower.  Is it wrong that I think that a lot of my family would come if my mom were around?  One of my biggest fears, though, is that on the day of the wedding, I won't enjoy myself at all.

So, I went searching for a wedding planner.  Because I don't live in a big city, there is only 1 local planner that I've heard of.  She's actually Catholic, so I felt like that was even better.

So, I made an appointment for a consultation.  She was really nice, and she was impressed by how well I had organized things thus far.

The "full monty" wedding planner package was $2500, which I thought sounded pretty reasonable.  24/7 planner support, help with vendors, attending vendor meetings, and on and on.

She agreed that I really only needed day-of help.  Perfect.

In my mind, the wedding planner would make sure candles are lit at the reception.  That the musicians and DJs show up in advance of our arrival at various venues.  That she would have a couple great ideas for limo services and maybe even the name of a great makeup artist.

What I wasn't expecting? 

That a day-of coordinator would cost a cool $2,000.  As soon as I saw the number, I felt sick.  Or I started to cry.  Not sure exactly which crossed my mind first, actually.

I'm lucky that my dad is helping a TON with wedding expenses.  I'm, of course, still really conscious of price, but I'm lucky I haven't been fretting over every dime.

But 20,000 dimes is a LOT of dimes.  Especially considering I live in one of the cheapest places to live in the country.  Literally.

So, it's looking like a wedding planner really isn't going to happen.  The only option I can think of is hiring someone out of Indianapolis and paying them to travel, which could end up being somewhat pricey.

So, am I being crazy to think $2000 for someone to mostly follow me around is too much?

I would love the peace of mind that money could buy... but I just can't justify $2000 for a planner for one day.

Did you have a wedding planner?  How much did you pay?

18 Classy Comments:

Katie said...

I planned my wedding without my Mom, or my husband's both have passed. It was definitely hard and sad at times! As for a day of coordinator, does you venue have someone on staff? We found that the people their were so incredibly helpful! Between their coordinator and the personal waiter they gave us, it felt just like a wedding planner! Also you will find during the day people step up to help, my photographer bustled my dress lol !

Hucy said...

You can def find cheaper! My day of coordinator in a college town is $300 (but that is the cheapest I have heard) but my friend in Atlanta found hers for $500. Have you checked wedding wire and websites like that that have vendor recommendations? Good luck!

the girl in the red shoes said...

Oh honey...I'm sorry. I still have my mom but she lived in CA while I planned a wedding mostly by myself in MI and it was tough. We didn't have a day of coordinator, but did have someone at the church who helped as well as my mom's best friend who helped make sure everything was set up at the reception. The girl who did our flowers also helped make sure that things were set up you might want to ask yours. My recommendation would be to see if you have a very organized family friend, cousin, or college friend that might be willing to help that day. Sending a big fat hug your way today!

zippitydodaaa said...

That sounds ridiculous! I live in DC but am getting married in Pittsburgh and day of wedding planning goes for $500! It sounds like she is just monopolizing on the fact that she is the only one doing it in your town. I definitely wouldn't pay that.

Duchess said...

Do you have a really good friend who is super organized and not in the wedding party that you can ask to act as the wedding planner on the day of the wedding and can this sentence get any longer?

Annie said...

I have a day of girl and she and her assistant together are only $1,500 and that's in Charlotte. One idea you could do is a friend that isn't super close to you but still reliable, you could ask her if she's interested in making an extra $500 to help you out that weekend! I'd love to do something like that but I don't live near you!

Cheerful Homemaker said...

$2,000 is way too much for someone to make sure people are lined up and going where they need to be. I had a family friend who helped keep things on track that day. I'd try and talk someone you know into helping you for free. :P

Jessica @ Wanting Adventure said...

Since I'm an event planner, I actually work on weddings as well. I would say that price is high given that you don't live in a big city. It's about average for St. Louis.

Given that you're worried about how things will go on your wedding day, I would highly recommend you hire someone who has some experience doing events or weddings. Hiring a friend to "help out" is just going to stress you out more. You could find a professional who is just starting out and needs to build her portfolio.

Have you talked to your photographer? They usually have recommendations for day-of coordination.

Email me if you have other questions! I'd be happy to help in whatever way I can!

how i met your father blog said...

do you have a friend or coworker you would trust with being there the day of? someone you could pay a decent bit of money to just assist during the day?

maybe find a college-aged girl from a local college or someone who you know will work with you - but not be so expensive?

"B" said...

We had a planner that was provided by the venue! She organized everyone very efficiently and it was included in the price of the venue. We did tip her at the end but I would call and ask your venue if they provide the service! She was a life saver really and it made the day run very smoothly and since she wasnt a friend she wasnt trying to enjoy the wedding either. I gave her a schedule of events with a timeline and she made sure it was followed TO A T!

Karen said...

Uh 2000 is insane. I live in a suburb of NYC and mine was only $500 and she did the Day Of, as well as organized the rehearsal dinner and the day after brunch. Find your local/state board on the Knot or Wedding Wire maybe for recommendations. I guarantee you can find someone for cheaper.

Jeanie said...

If I were you, that wedding planner would have already been forgotten. Sheesh.

Laura C said...

The fact that she is charging only $500 less for day-of strikes me as odd. Do you think she is willing to negotiate? Even $1500 sounds more fair (because the wedding day is the MOST work out of the whole planning process. It is a LONG day & making sure everything goes right is hard work). I think you need to hire SOMEONE professional for day of coordination. You need to do whatever is in your power to allow yourself to relax and enjoy your wedding day. Otherwise, what is all this for?

Kimberly said...

Does your venue offer this service? At my venue I can pay extra by-the-hour to have a coordinator that will make sure the centerpieces are as so, the vendors are set up, keeps the schedule flowing as it should, etc. Weddings are so crazy - - I've been tempted so many times just to fly off to an island to say our "I dos". Good luck, girl!

Leslie said...

I did have a wedding planner - six years ago it was about $2,500. Now don't get me wrong she had some great ideas..... I didn't have my parents here either but felt after that I could have planned it on my own just as good if not better!
Good luck on whatever you decide

Ann said...

I didn't have a wedding planner since we only have close family and friends around during our wedding.
I think if that coordinator would take away a lot of things for you to worry and would just make you feel happy and beautiful on your wedding day and that a lovely memorable wedding can be assured then the price might just be worth it.

angel gonzales said...

I hired a wedding planner and i was happy i did. It made the planning less of a stress. The wedding went on smoothly as planned although i had to pay some extra amount but it was all worth it.


Emma Mercer said...

I didnt hire a planner for my wedding but i hired a wedding coordinator instead just for the big day. I decided to hire one to help me out on the big day. I don't remember how much we paid but it was all worth it.


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