July 2018

July 20, 2018

Your wedding planner acts as your representative on the big day, so it’s crucial that you find someone that is organized, innovative, and above all is someone that you connect with! There are oodles (yes, oodles) of wedding planners out there, so how do you decide which one is right for you? We’ve put together a helpful list of questions for you to ask when interviewing potential wedding planner candidates.

1 | What does the communication process look like?

Depending on the package you’re looking for (i.e., full-service planning, day-of coordination, etc.), it’s important to know how many meetings are included with your wedding planner. Some planners include unlimited correspondence, while others offer a certain number of hours or meetings.

Additionally, you’ll want to ask how the planner prefers to communicate, whether it’s in-person, phone or email. Make sure their preferences align with yours — if you are someone who would like a lot of face time with your wedding planner, it would be disappointing to hire someone who mainly works over the phone or email.

2 | What is your wedding planning experience?

This seems like a no-brainer, but obviously, you want to know what each wedding planner’s background is! The more experience they have, the more comforting it is entrusting them with your special day. See how long they have been in business or at least in the wedding industry overall. More experienced planners (although usually more expensive) typically have more industry connections, meaning they have stronger relationships with other vendors and are able to provide more detailed recommendations.

3 | Have you done a wedding at my venue?

It’s a big advantage if a wedding planner is already familiar with your wedding venue. They usually have an idea of the policies, and may even have sample floor plans or photos of previous weddings that they can share with you.

If a wedding planner has not worked at your venue before, ask if they have worked at venues of a similar style. It’s certainly not a bad thing if a planner has not worked at your venue before, but it would be helpful if they have a walkthrough of the space before the wedding to get familiar with the layout and to meet the venue contacts.

4 | What service do you recommend based on my needs?

Rather than simply asking for a list of services and pricing, it’s better to sit down with a wedding planner and tell them what your expectations are leading up the wedding and the day of. That way, the planner can assess your needs and give you package options based on your preferences. For example, are you looking for design or just day-of logistics? Any and all details are helpful and worth sharing during your wedding planning interview. If they suggest something that is out of your budget, let them know and ask if there’s anything similar that you can do at a lower price point. Wedding planners are usually willing to work with you and tailor their services to meet your needs.

5 | Who is your ideal client?

This is a great question to ask in order to see if you and your wedding planner will work well together. As noted previously, your wedding planner acts as your representative on the day of the event, and they often have to make day-of decisions on your behalf when it comes to design and logistics. Although it’s important to click with all of your vendors, it’s crucial to have a good relationship with your wedding planner. Listen to the response carefully and take note of their personality throughout the meeting to see if their goals and passions align with your wedding vision. Similar to the feeling when you find a wedding dress, you will have a gut instinct if a wedding planner is a good fit for you.

What are You Waiting For?

What questions would you ask a potential wedding planner? We encourage you to explore some of Minnesota's best wedding planners here! Share your ideas in a comment below!

July 13, 2018

Venue Tour Tips

Expert Advice on Booking the Wedding Venue of Your Dreams

One of the very first things on a newly engaged couple’s to-do list is booking the wedding venue. With so many different options available, it’s important that you do your research and ask plenty of questions to ensure you are picking the perfect space for your wedding vision (and budget). Below are a few expert tips and tricks to help you on your journey to finding the wedding venue of your dreams!

Step One: Do Your Research

Although it’s tempting to fill your calendar with appointments to see different venues, it’s important that you do your homework to narrow in on the top spaces that fit your aesthetic, budget and expected guest count. We recommend creating a spreadsheet to keep all of your wedding venue facts in one handy place. This spreadsheet can include information such as location, capacity, unique features, onsite catering, parking, etc. Once you have developed a list of your favorite wedding venue candidates, you’ll want to make sure they have availability for the date, month or season that you’re hoping to get married.

Step Two: Book Appointments

We know you’re probably SO excited and want to go on a wedding venue tour marathon, but we strongly suggest calling ahead to set up appointments rather than just stopping by. Many venues are by appointment only, and others may be private mansions or museums that serve other functions than just weddings. When you do call to arrange a wedding venue tour, you’ll likely get asked a few questions from the sales team so they can give you the most applicable information during your visit. You’ll want to have an idea of your:

  • Wedding date or season: if you are unsure, you’ll want to know at least what day of the week you’d like (are you only open to Saturdays? Perhaps a Friday or Sunday?)
  • Approximate guest count: you can provide a range, but you’ll want to know roughly how large your crowd will be to see if you will comfortably fit in the space.
  • Ceremony location: many venues offer ceremony space, so it is helpful to know if you plan on tying the knot in an alternate location, such as a church, outdoor park, etc.

Step Three: Bring Your Tour Toolkit

Does such a thing exist!? Now it does! It’s important that you are prepared with the right questions and supplies so you can make the most out of your wedding venue tours. Each venue has its own unique set of policies and amenities, so be sure to take detailed and organized notes so that you are able to clearly distinguish each one. Below are some items we recommend having in your wedding venue tour toolkit:

  • Notebook and pen or digital tablet: during your visit, write down the information provided and confirm all details you recorded are correct before departing. This ensures you have understood things clearly because there are a LOT of details provided in a wedding venue tour. Also, take note of the person who gave you the tour and their contact information in case you have additional questions for them.
  • Camera: have a camera or phone at the ready to take photos and videos of the space. It will be beyond helpful when you are trying to remember which venue is which! We also recommend following your prospective wedding venues on Instagram, so that you can visualize what other weddings looked like in the space.
  • Questions: obviously, right! Don’t be afraid to ask ALL the questions - write them down in your notebook and get them answered as you go. Here are a few of our most frequently asked wedding venue questions:
    • What is the facility rental fee? What is included with that cost?
    • How long is my rental time? Is it possible to add hours? What is the cost?
    • Is there a promotional rate for off-season weddings? Fridays? Sundays?
    • Are there getting ready spaces for the wedding party?
    • What are the parking, transportation and nearby accommodation options?

Do you feel ready for your next wedding venue tour? Use this guide to ensure you have the best experience possible. Check out some of Minnesota's best wedding venues here. Happy planning!

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