This is the part of Wizard of Oz where Dorothy is scared, confused, and worried about what is ahead of her. The same can be true when planning your own wedding. You may start looking to find someone to handle the stress for you, but it can be confusing when looking at all the different service titles. Let’s see if I can help clear up some of that confusion.
Venue Coordinator: When you book your ceremony/reception venue, the site may include what’s known as a Venue Coordinator. We often hear, “Oh the Venue Coordinator will take care of everything”. Just remember that the Venue Coordinator takes care of mostly venue related items not necessarily you! They take care of the room, the staff, the food, the tables etc. Venue Coordinators will not be with you if there is an offsite ceremony. They will not be with you during the planning process of your wedding. They will not be with you when you have an issue with an uncooperative bridesmaid or a pushy family member or when you need help with your train or changing your shoes etc. The Venue Coordinator is a great help at the venue, but they normally do not get involved in all of the pre-planning and the details of your wedding day. Charge is usually included in the cost of the venue.
Wedding Planner/Designer: The Wedding Planner is there to help plan the overall style and design of the wedding, like the flowers, lighting and linens to ensure that the theme of the wedding is reflected in all aspects of the wedding. They go with you on all appointments to assist picking your photographer, your D.J., your venue, etc. They manage the money and ensure that you stay on budget. Charge is usually 10%-15% of total budget.
Wedding Coordinator/Day-of Coordinator: A Wedding Coordinator is a mediator, an orchestrator, a consultant, a sounding board, a friend, and an organizer all rolled into one. Wedding Coordinators plan and work out every aspect of your wedding. They are there to make sure your day is perfect. They create a detailed time-line for your wedding day and manage and work with your vendors. They take care of everything you need in order to ensure your day will be fabulous. Charge is usually $800-$1500 for the entire day and all pre-planning appointments.