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Can wedding planners fit into your budget?

The job of a wedding planner is not an easy one.  A wedding planner can be considered an umbrella term for a whole bunch of services that are organised and delivered by a single person or a team of people. Given the extent of the job, the cost at which it is all available is an important criteria for those planning weddings in the near future.

Initially, this industry worked by receiving a percentage of the cost of a wedding however, now, planners charge a flat rate for the services they are going to provide.  This would vary depending on the package chosen – whether it is the consulting package, the day of coordination package or the full-wedding planning package.

 

What do these packages include?

For those planning to hire a wedding planner, this is a very fair question because only when you know what a package contains, can you be sure it’s the right one for you. To start off, the Consulting Package is a bill-by-the-hour package where a client will approach a wedding planner to help address certain areas that he or she needs help in, whether it is vendor suggestions or venue choices. These meetings happen before the major wedding planning starts. However, these meetings are also used as opportunities for wedding planners to recommend a Day of Coordination package or even a Full Wedding Package by showing the clients how unprepared they are for D-Day.

 

The cost of such a meeting can vary between Rs. 2,000/- to 4,000/- an hour for a new wedding planner. However, in the city, this price will certainly be much more. A well-established wedding planning agency can even start their rates at Rs. 6,000/- and go above and beyond 9,000/-

 

Day of Coordination Package: A Must-Have?

Some brides like the thrill of managing their entire wedding by themselves. However, even these wonder women would need someone to assist on the wedding day while they are busy getting ready. This package may be booked at an early date but the wedding planner will only step in a week or two before the wedding.

This is because the day-of-coordinator needs to create a detailed timeline, contact the vendors who are confirmed for the day, check contact information, review contracts signed so that the obligations of vendors are clearly outlined. Once the wedding planner is familiarised with the client’s vision for the day, they would have to handle the rehearsal. In addition to that, their presence on the day of the ceremony is a must and they have to make sure every detail has been taken care of.

The coordinator will also be the point of contact between the couple and the vendors. This will make sure the bride is not burdened with unnecessary stress. The wedding planner will ensure that the entire ceremony and reception goes well and even if things don’t follow the planned timelines, the wedding planner has to make sure that everything is rearranged so that there aren’t any botch ups and the couple and their family remain unstressed.

The cost of this package would vary depending on location, number of reception venues, etc. However, in rural areas, it can be availed at a price of Rs. 30,000/- to 50,000/- particularly because a ceremony that entails more than 200 guests would need assistants to come into the picture, thereby increasing the cost. In large cities, the cost of a day of package can start from 50,000/- and go higher.

 

Full Service Wedding Package: A Frequent Choice

Many professional wedding planners only take on Full Service Wedding Packages because this is playing in the big leagues. By taking on a full wedding service, the planner has a complete idea about the feel of the wedding that will be associated with their name. The reason this is a favourite on both sides is because many couples are far too busy to handle all the intricacies of wedding planning themselves and therefore are always glad to put the job in the hands of more experienced people. On the flipside, the wedding planner will always want clients to avail this package as it keeps them in control of the ceremony from start to end.

They can bring in a team of vendors who they have worked with so that arrangements and putting the vision across isn’t a complete disaster. Naturally, this package would cover all the details mentioned in the day-of package as well – from meeting florists to getting the right linen, rentals and printed matter.

Many clients prefer this package as it provides them with the opportunity to take full advantage of the wedding planner’s expertise and contacts. In addition, vendors are prone to offering discounted rates to the planners that regularly use their services. Plus, with a professional planner on board, there is no doubt that every aspect of the big day will go on as planned.

However, here too, there may be extra fees charged if there is more than one location or if it is a really large wedding. A Full Service Wedding Package will start at about 1,20,000/-  at planning agencies that are still new but can go all the way up to 6,00,000/- if the client stays out of it completely.

Thus, whether a couple is planning on approaching a wedding planner just for a few advice sessions or to take on the entire package, the best thing to do is compare the rates of planners offering the required services, in your area. Based on whether the couple is looking to have an exceptionally extravagant wedding or an everyday wedding where the couple’s sole concern is having the night of their lives, the costs will certainly vary.

A smart wedding planning agency will always price themselves within the range of what is being offered by the competitors in the area.  With a bit of research and by speaking to a few over the phone you would get a fair idea of what the average pricing in your area are for the different types of services offered.