Although many people use the words wedding coordinator and wedding planner synonymously, these professions can play very different roles in the wedding planning process. Learning more about each of them will help you determine which one to hire for your wedding:

Wedding Coordinators

A wedding coordinator will make sure that everything goes smoothly on your wedding day. The engaged couple will do most, if not all, of the planning on their own. Then, a wedding coordinator should be contacted at least a month before the wedding to go over the wedding plans with you. The wedding coordinator will confirm with the vendors and make sure that all wedding formalities have been considered, such as seating charts and ceremony decorations. A wedding coordinator is less expensive than a wedding planner, but they won’t be as involved with the process. So know that while you’re paying less, you’re also getting less than the full planning service, which means you’ll be required to do a lot of the heavy lifting.

These days, many venues will provide someone who can help you with day-of coordination as well. A day-of-coordinator is primarily concerned with the run of show on the day of your wedding such as managing your wedding party, timing of the ceremony and reception, on-site staffing, and more. Day-of-coordination involves limited assistance with advanced planning.

Wedding Planners

A wedding planner should be contacted as soon as you get engaged. When you first meet with a planner, discuss any ideas of your wedding vision that you would like to see. Then, your wedding planner can help with every detail of the wedding, such as selecting the venue, choosing a florist and caterer, ordering invites, tracking RSVPs, and negotiating contracts. Planners who have been working in the area for a while will have suggestions of people for you to hire. The planner will help create and track a detailed timeline and budget.  Some planners will even do the same job as the wedding coordinator on the day of the wedding.

If you’re a busy bride or groom with few hours available each week to plan the wedding, it would be wise to hire a wedding planner. Brides and grooms with a lot of family and friends who want a say in the wedding can also benefit from hiring a wedding planner who will make sure that the bride’s vision is upheld throughout the planning process and on the day of the wedding.

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