The Dos and Don'ts of Hiring a Wedding Planner

29 May 2024·21 min to read
The Dos and Don'ts of Hiring a Wedding Planner 01

Your wedding day is one of the most significant events of your life. It's a day filled with love, joy, and the promise of a lifetime together. To ensure that your special day goes off without a hitch, many couples turn to the expertise of a wedding planner. These professionals are skilled in orchestrating every detail, from the ceremony to the reception, so you can focus on celebrating your love.

However, hiring a wedding planner is not a decision to be taken lightly. Your choice of a wedding planner can greatly impact the success and enjoyment of your wedding day. To help you make an informed decision and navigate the process, we've compiled a comprehensive guide of dos and don'ts. Whether you're newly engaged or well into your wedding planning journey, this article will provide valuable insights into selecting the perfect wedding planner to bring your dream wedding to life. So, let's dive into the essential dos and don'ts of hiring a wedding planner.

Key Takeaways 

  • Do Your Research: Research is essential when hiring a wedding planner. Start by asking for recommendations from friends and family. Look for planners who specialize in your type of wedding, whether it's a destination wedding, a cultural ceremony, or an intimate gathering.
    Check online reviews and portfolios to get a sense of a planner's style and previous work.
    Conduct interviews to ensure your personalities and visions align.
    Do Establish Clear Communication: Effective communication is key to a successful partnership with your wedding planner. Clearly articulate your vision, budget, and expectations from the beginning. Keep the lines of communication open throughout the planning process, addressing concerns or changes promptly.
  • Do Set Realistic Expectations: Understand that a wedding planner can make the process smoother, but they can't perform miracles. Be realistic about your budget and the time required for planning. Trust your planner's expertise and consider their advice.
  • Don't Micromanage: While your input is essential, avoid micromanaging every detail. Trust your planner to handle the logistics and execute your vision. Micromanagement can lead to stress for both you and the planner.
  • Don't Ignore Contracts: Always have a written contract that outlines the services, fees, and responsibilities of both parties. Review the contract thoroughly before signing and ask for clarification if needed. A contract protects both you and your planner and ensures everyone is on the same page.
  • Don't Forget to Show Appreciation: Show gratitude for your wedding planner's hard work and dedication. A simple thank you, thoughtful gift, or positive testimonial can go a long way. Sharing your joy and appreciation strengthens your relationship.
  • Do Share Your Wedding Story: Continue to celebrate your love story even after the wedding.
    Share memories and photos on social media, and consider submitting your wedding for publication. Referring your planner to friends and family can be a meaningful gesture.
  • Don't Stop Dreaming: Keep dreaming and planning for future celebrations and milestones. Maintain a positive relationship with your wedding planner beyond your wedding day. They can continue to be a valuable resource for special events.

Do Your Research

Understand Your Needs

Before you even begin your search for a wedding planner, it's crucial to understand your needs and preferences. Take some time as a couple to envision your dream wedding. What style do you want? Do you have specific ideas about the venue, theme, or colors? Understanding your needs will help you find a wedding planner who aligns with your vision.

Seek Recommendations

One of the best ways to start your search is by seeking recommendations from friends, family, or even other wedding vendors. Personal referrals can be invaluable in finding a trustworthy and experienced wedding planner. Ask those who have recently tied the knot about their experiences and whether they'd recommend their planner. Online reviews and wedding forums can also provide insights into planners with excellent track records.

Do Interview Multiple Planners

Questions to Ask

Once you've gathered a list of potential wedding planners, it's time to start interviewing them. Prepare a list of questions to ask during these interviews. Inquire about their experience in planning weddings similar to yours. Ask about their approach to handling challenges and unexpected situations. Find out if they have any preferred vendors they like to work with, as this can impact your options.

Review Portfolios and Past Work

As you interview potential planners, don't forget to request and review their portfolios. A planner's past work can provide valuable insights into their style and capabilities. Look for weddings they've coordinated that align with your vision. Pay attention to details like aesthetics, organization, and overall execution. The ability to see their previous projects will help you gauge if their style matches yours and if they can bring your dream wedding to life.

These initial steps in the hiring process lay the foundation for a successful partnership with your wedding planner. By thoroughly researching, asking the right questions, and reviewing their work, you'll be well on your way to making an informed decision. Remember, this is one of the most important days of your life, and choosing the right planner is a significant step toward ensuring it's a memorable and stress-free experience.

Do Check Credentials and Experience

Verify Certifications

While experience is vital, certifications can also provide reassurance of a planner's professionalism and commitment to their craft. Check if the wedding planners you're considering have relevant certifications, such as Certified Wedding Planner (CWP) or membership in reputable associations like the Association of Bridal Consultants (ABC). These credentials can be an indicator of their dedication to maintaining industry standards and staying updated on the latest trends.

Review Past Work

Beyond their portfolios, delve deeper into their past work. Ask for references from previous clients and reach out to them. Inquire about their overall experience working with the planner, from communication to problem-solving abilities. Were they satisfied with the final results? Did the planner go above and beyond to make their wedding day exceptional? Talking to past clients can provide invaluable insights into a planner's professionalism and commitment to making your wedding day extraordinary.

By checking their credentials and thoroughly reviewing their past work, you can feel more confident in your choice of a wedding planner. These steps help you verify their qualifications and ensure they have the experience and skills necessary to make your wedding day everything you've dreamed of.

Do Discuss Your Vision

Share Your Ideas

Open and clear communication is essential when working with a wedding planner. Take the time to share your wedding vision and ideas with them. Discuss the theme, colors, style, and any specific details that are important to you. Sharing your vision ensures that your planner understands your expectations and can work towards bringing them to life.

Listen to Their Input

While it's crucial to express your vision, it's equally important to listen to your wedding planner's input. They bring a wealth of experience and expertise to the table. They may have suggestions or creative ideas that can enhance your wedding day. Be open to their recommendations and trust their judgment. A successful collaboration involves a balance of your desires and their professional insights.

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Don't Overlook the Budget

Establish a Clear Budget

A critical aspect of wedding planning is setting a budget, and your wedding planner should be a valuable resource in helping you manage it. Work closely with your planner to establish a clear and realistic budget that covers all aspects of your wedding, from the venue to the smallest details like decorations and favors. Be transparent about your financial limitations and priorities, so your planner can make appropriate recommendations.

Avoid Surprises

One of the key roles of a wedding planner is to help you stay within your budget. However, it's essential to stay involved in financial discussions and decisions throughout the planning process. Regularly review and update your budget with your planner, and ensure that there are no unexpected expenses. Effective communication about finances will prevent any budget-related surprises down the road.

Don't Rush the Decision

Take Your Time

Hiring a wedding planner is a significant decision, and it's crucial not to rush it. Take your time during the selection process. Avoid the temptation to hire the first planner you meet; instead, weigh your options and conduct thorough interviews. A well-considered choice is more likely to lead to a positive experience.

Trust Your Instincts

While it's essential to do your research and consider various factors, don't underestimate the importance of your instincts. If you have a strong gut feeling about a particular wedding planner, it's worth paying attention to. Trust is a vital element in your relationship with your planner, so feeling comfortable and confident in your choice is essential.

Making the right decisions when hiring a wedding planner can lead to a smooth and enjoyable wedding planning experience. By adhering to these dos and don'ts, you'll be well-equipped to find the perfect planner who can turn your wedding dreams into a beautiful reality.

Do Establish a Communication Plan

Regular Updates

Effective communication is the cornerstone of a successful partnership with your wedding planner. Establish a clear communication plan from the beginning. Determine how often you'll have updates, whether through emails, phone calls, or in-person meetings. Regular communication ensures that both you and your planner are on the same page, and any concerns or changes can be addressed promptly.

Emergency Contact

In case of emergencies or urgent questions, ensure you have a designated point of contact with your wedding planner. Having a reliable way to reach them when needed can provide peace of mind, especially as your wedding day approaches. Clear communication channels minimize stress and ensure that any unforeseen issues can be resolved swiftly.

Don't Micromanage

Delegate Responsibility

While it's natural to want every detail of your wedding to be perfect, avoid the temptation to micromanage your wedding planner. Trust them to handle the logistics and details, as that's their expertise. Micromanaging can lead to stress and hinder the planner's ability to work efficiently. Instead, delegate responsibility and allow them the creative freedom to execute your vision.

Provide Feedback

Although you should trust your wedding planner's expertise, it's essential to provide constructive feedback when necessary. If you have concerns or preferences that haven't been met, communicate them respectfully. A good planner will value your input and make necessary adjustments to ensure your satisfaction.

Do Review the Contract

Understand the Terms

Before finalizing your decision to hire a wedding planner, review the contract thoroughly. Ensure you understand all the terms and conditions, including fees, payment schedules, and cancellation policies. If there are any unclear points, don't hesitate to ask for clarification. A well-defined contract protects both you and your planner and sets clear expectations for your working relationship.

Keep Copies

Once the contract is signed, make sure to keep copies in a safe place. Having easy access to the contract ensures that you can refer to it if any issues or questions arise during the planning process. It serves as a reference point for both parties and helps maintain transparency throughout your collaboration.

By following these dos and don'ts in your relationship with your wedding planner, you'll not only ensure a smoother planning process but also increase the likelihood of a stunning and stress-free wedding day. These guidelines help create a strong foundation for a successful partnership that will result in a memorable celebration of your love.

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Do Show Appreciation

Acknowledge Their Hard Work

Throughout the wedding planning journey, don't forget to show appreciation for your wedding planner's dedication and hard work. Planning a wedding is a demanding job, and your gratitude can go a long way. A simple thank you, a thoughtful gift, or a heartfelt note can make your planner feel valued and motivated to continue making your wedding exceptional.

Share Your Joy

After the wedding day has come and gone, take a moment to share your joy and satisfaction with your wedding planner. Let them know how much you appreciate their efforts in making your dream wedding a reality. Positive feedback and testimonials can benefit both you and your planner, as they can showcase their expertise to future clients.

Don't Forget to Reflect

Post-Wedding Reflection

After your wedding day, set aside time to reflect on the entire planning process. Consider what went smoothly, what challenges were faced, and what you learned along the way. Reflecting on your wedding journey can provide valuable insights and help you appreciate the hard work that went into creating your special day.

Cherish the Memories

Weddings are not just about the day itself but also about the memories created. Cherish the moments you shared with your wedding planner and the joy of seeing your vision come to life. These memories will stay with you for a lifetime and remind you of the beauty of your wedding day.

In conclusion, hiring a wedding planner can be a game-changer in your wedding planning journey. By following these dos and don'ts, you can build a positive and productive relationship with your planner, leading to a memorable and stress-free wedding day that reflects your unique love story.

Do Share Your Wedding Story

Celebrate Your Love

After your wedding, continue sharing your love story. Share photos and memories from your special day on social media, with friends and family, and even consider submitting your wedding to a wedding magazine or blog. By sharing your love story, you not only celebrate your union but also acknowledge the hard work and dedication of your wedding planner in creating your dream wedding.

Refer Your Wedding Planner

If you were exceptionally pleased with your wedding planner's services, consider referring them to friends and family who may be planning their weddings. A positive referral is one of the best ways to show appreciation for their hard work and can help them continue to thrive in their career.

Don't Stop Dreaming

Future Celebrations

Your wedding day is just the beginning of your journey together as a married couple. Don't stop dreaming and planning for future celebrations and milestones. Whether it's anniversaries, vow renewals, or family gatherings, a great wedding planner can continue to be a valuable resource for creating beautiful and memorable events.

Continue the Relationship

Maintain a positive relationship with your wedding planner beyond your wedding day. They can be a valuable resource for event planning, even for non-wedding-related occasions. Keep their contact information handy and reach out whenever you need expert assistance in planning special events.

In the end, the dos and don'ts of hiring a wedding planner extend far beyond the wedding day itself. They encompass the entire journey of love, planning, and celebration. By following these guidelines, you not only ensure a successful wedding but also foster a positive, lasting relationship with your wedding planner.


In conclusion, hiring a wedding planner can be a transformative experience that elevates your wedding day to a level of beauty and sophistication you might not have thought possible. By adhering to the dos and don'ts outlined in this guide, you can forge a collaborative and fruitful partnership with your wedding planner. These professionals possess the expertise, creativity, and dedication to bring your dreams to life, ensuring that your special day is a truly unforgettable one.

Remember, communication, trust, and gratitude are the cornerstones of a successful relationship with your wedding planner. Embrace the collaborative spirit, maintain open lines of communication, and always express your appreciation for their hard work. With a wedding planner by your side, your journey from "yes" to "I do" will be a joyful and stress-free adventure, culminating in the wedding of your dreams. Cheers to a lifetime of love and happiness