become a wedding planner
photo credit: initalywedding via photopin cc

What is a Wedding Planner, Bridal Consultant REALLY?

become a wedding planner
photo credit: initalywedding via photopin cc

By Nancy Tucker; Certified Wedding Coordinator & Wedding Planner, Former President and Founder of: Coordinators Corner: Professional Wedding Planners Forum and Online Community and on How to Become a Wedding Planner

First, a brief description of what a wedding planner is, and does.

A wedding planner, otherwise known as wedding coordinator or bridal consultant, assists brides in all aspects of planning their weddings. They provide advice and assistance with aquiring attire, invitations, decorations, music, food, and other aspects of the wedding. Many wedding planners own their own company and some even have a staff. Consultants working for bridal shops, catering facilities or department stores may be called bridal consultants, but brides should ask what exactly it is that these consultants will supply. Not all wedding planners are alike.

Currently, there are no specific educational requirements to become a wedding consultant, however, there are courses one can take to become a certified bridal consultant. Correspondence schools offer courses in bridal and gift consulting. Many get on the job training by working for an already established wedding planner or an experienced consultant. When interviewing a prospective wedding planner ask lots of questions to be sure they know their stuff.

So, why do I need a planner? In a word, stress! Almost every bride today has had a vision of their wedding day since childhood. She sees only the beauty and the glamour of being “Queen for a Day” in her vision.

Unfortunately, to get to all of the beauty of a perfect wedding day, it takes between 100 and 200 hours of planning. Once realized, this is when the panic sets in and the dynamics change greatly.

Today’s bride needs to think:

  • Do I have 100 to 200 hours to plan this wedding?
  • Do I know all of the best vendors that fit my vision and my budget?
  • Do I know the proper etiquette?
  • Do I have the patience to deal with all of the emotional personalities that become involved in every wedding?
  • Do I tolerate stress well or will I become the dreaded “Bridezilla”?

A professional wedding planner, otherwise known as a bridal consultant oe wedding coordinator, will be able to work with your budget to help you create the dream of a perfect wedding day because:

  • The wedding planner is equipped to do the job full time.
  • The planner is trained to know all of the elements necessary for your particular ceremony and reception.
  • The planner has worked with wedding professionals and has a relationship that can often get you the best quality at a reduced price.
  • The planner will work with your schedule to set up vendor meetings.
  • The planner will set up meetings only with the vendors that meet your budgetary requirements.

When interviewing a wedding planner, you should ask:

  • What training and certification do you have? What is your experience level?
  • Do you have a business license and business insurance?
  • How do you charge for your services?
  • Do you take vendor referral fees?
  • What procedure is in place to provide a replacement if you should be unable to perform on the wedding day?

With all of this considered, now you can relax and concentrate on shopping for a wedding planner that will work well with you.

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