The Difference Between a 'Wedding Planner' and a 'Wedding Co-ordinator'

Recently one of our lovely members Melanie from Cranberry Blue posted this article on her blog, we though it was very useful readings for planners, venues, brides and industry professionals.

If I had a pound for every time a heard a bride say ‘my venue has a Wedding Co-ordinator so I don’t need a Wedding Planner’ then I would be a pretty wealthy woman…

Now to a Wedding Planner, having an excellent Wedding Co-ordinator at the venue is vital as it makes our job much easier, as it means we can focus on managing the day as a whole, over-seeing all the tiny details, being on hand to attend to the bride and groom and solve any problems that may arise. I therefore don’t want this article to come across as negative to Wedding Co-ordinators but I simply wish to highlight the difference between the 2 roles so that you can make an informed decision as to what is right for you.

Depending on the type of service you have confirmed with a Wedding Planner, we are likely to have planned the majority if not all of your wedding, from sourcing the venue and suppliers right down to creating the design concept, planning the schedule of the day and ensuring every last detail is in place. We therefore know the ins and outs of your wedding day to the same level of detail (if not more) to you so are best equipped to be there on the day to manage it so you can just relax and enjoy yourself, confident that your wedding is in safe hands.

Most venues have a recommended supplier list, a lot of those will only include suppliers who they feel offer the right level of service and product to match the venue, however some operate on a commission basis where the supplier either has to pay the venue certain percentage if they are booked, or they even have to pay to be on that list. While this may give you a small selection of suppliers to choose from, it does not guarantee that they are of a certain quality and they haven’t been chosen specifically for you.

A Wedding Planner on the other hand has spent years building up close relationships with high calibre suppliers so they can reply on them to deliver 100%. We have a wide range of different people that we work with that offer something different in terms of style and price to ensure they are exactly what you are looking for.

Given these close relationships, Wedding Planners also have pre-negotiated rates in many cases, or if not then we will always negotiate hard on your behalf and pass that discount directly onto you. Venues can on the flip side make a commission from you using certain suppliers and it’s not in their interest to negotiate a saving for you.

A good Wedding Planner will always strive to make each wedding they plan unique and tailor-made, whereas venues generally like to keep to a similar format that works for them.

With so many elements that go into planning a wedding, a Wedding Co-ordinator will help with specific details on the day but won’t manage the entire process from start to finish like a Wedding Planner will.

Most Wedding Planners offer a separate ‘On the Day Management’ service which is perfect for some couples who are happy to plan their wedding themselves. Although a Wedding Co-ordinator at a venue will manage some of the tasks of the day such as co-ordinating with the registrar; ensuring the rooms are ready before guests arrive and being the main contact for the day, what they won’t do but Cranberry Blue Weddings will is…

• Create a highly detailed timeline for the day that includes absolutely everything involved in making your day run like clockwork. In addition to this we create simplified versions for the wedding party so everyone is clear what their roles are.

• Be on hand 2-3 weeks before to discuss the final details relating to all aspects of the wedding, so any concerns you have can be addressed

• Re-confirm delivery and set up times, and details with all of your suppliers and co-ordinate this with the venue. This is done 2-3 weeks before and again on the morning of the wedding day itself.

• Receive the buttonholes and bouquets from the florist and ensure they are allocated to the right people

• Assist in putting the buttonholes on (you’d be surprised as to how many men don’t know how to do this)

• Ensure the Procession line into the ceremony is correct

• Help set up the venue (ideally the day before), if not on the morning and rigorously check the seating plan has been followed correctly

• Double check that the tables look perfect and the table cloths have been pressed (they always have unsightly creases in them), check cutlery is lined up perfectly and glasses are in exactly the right position etc.

• We will visit you in the morning to check you are okay and be on hand if you need anything, however small

• What happens if something goes wrong on the day – someone spills foundation on their dress, a supplier doesn’t turn up or your cake is damaged? We’re there to resolve all of these problems for you – using our emergency kit to remove the makeup, call in a favour from another supplier worst case scenario or use some cleverly placed flowers to disguise the cake accident.

So before you dismiss using the services of a Wedding Planner, either to plan the whole event or to just be there on the day itself it might just be worth thinking about investing a relatively small amount of money to ensure your day is even better than you could have expected…


Thanks Melanie!






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