What Does A Wedding Planner Do?

When you have just gotten engaged, it is inevitable that you ask yourself the question, ‘Do I need a Wedding Planner?’ And the easiest answer is absolutely ‘Yes!’ Wedding planners make every aspect of planning and arranging your special day SO much easier. And contrary to popular belief, they don’t charge you an arm-and-a-leg. They can actually help you save money on your budget because they have all the inside information and trusted suppliers, so they can get great discounts.

Not much of a reader? No problem! Watch this video of Why You Need a Wedding Planner:

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What type of bride needs a wedding coordinator? 

There are many couples who want to do all the wedding planning and organizing themselves. Some couples are the sort of rock-solid, unflappable, creative folk for whom stress and decision-making are normal day-to-day experiences. But for others, all the pressure and drama of deciding on decor, guest lists, seating plans, menus, etc. can become overwhelming. This is where the wedding coordinators step in!

Wedding planners are for brides who:
  • Are perfectionists and detail-oriented
  • Struggle with decision making
  • Are easily persuaded to overspend
  • Work full time
  • Want a professional to oversee everything on the day
  • Have a tight budget

This last point may sound counter-intuitive, but the less money there is to spend, the more important it is to spend it just right! It is vital to meet a potential wedding planner before booking to ensure they understand the couple’s needs and grasp the specific wedding style. Most importantly, the bride must actually like her planner! So what exactly does the wedding planner do? They help with the design, planning, and management of a wedding and they should aim to do this by delivering a very personal service, in a stylish but affordable way.

Getting a wedding planner is a good investment, but it is understandable that some couples still prefer to plan their wedding themselves so we’ve compiled a condensed wedding planning checklist for you to print and keep close by to help you on your journey. Regardless of whether you have a planner, your wedding day will still be magical and your most important day. A planner is really there to help make your dream day a reality and think of small things you might not have. Ultimately they take the stress out of having to do any last-minute things yourself and ensure everything runs smoothly.

Download our Wedding Planning Checklist Here!


The scope of what a wedding coordinator does differs from person to person. Some planners offer full planning services for every aspect of your wedding, whilst others specialize more in the decor and styling aspects. To find out what exactly your planner can offer, you will need to contact them and have a look at their portfolio of work. Below are some of the basics that you can expect:

A wedding planner will:
  • Consult with you on what exactly you are looking for
  • Look for every conceivable way to save money and manage your budget
  • Be an objective guide through the smorgasbord of décor ideas, venues, and wedding suppliers
  • Ensure a stress-free planning process
  • Be the liaison between you and all the vendors involved
  • Offer Full-Service or On-the-Day coordination
On the day the wedding planner:
  • Is first to arrive and the last to leave
  • Makes sure everything is done on time
  • Manages any mini catastrophe’s that might arise

So why hire a wedding planner? Because it’s like having a wedding sidekick, they ensure you get to enjoy every minute of your special day! The couple should be able to fully enjoy their special day and not have to worry about all the little details and what-ifs. Having a professional there to help everything run smoothly is a great way to give you that extra reassurance so that you can relax and focus only on the happiest day of your life.

If you are still not 100% sure whether a wedding planner is a good fit for you, here are some important questions to ask yourself:

Here are a few things to think about when making your decision:
  1. Have you found a wedding venue?
  2. Have you found all your service providers?
  3. Do you have a realistic budget set out?
  4. How much does a wedding planner cost?
  5. Putting it all together– on your own or with the help of a professional

Have you found a wedding venue?

Finding your perfect wedding venue can be one of the most time-consuming parts of planning a wedding. There are SO many venue options, each with its own unique offering. Shortlisting your options and visiting each venue is a massive task. The process of filtering through the different types of venues and venue locations alone is massive – and that is before you start getting quotes and checking available dates! Do you want a forest venue or a beach venue? Do you want a venue in Gauteng or KZN? Should the venue include accommodation or not?

Having somebody with experience and knowledge about all the options, somebody who knows what you are looking for will make this far more enjoyable.

Find your Wedding Venue

Have you found your service providers?

Firstly, by service providers, we mean all the people and companies who are involved in your wedding. This starts with the stationery company who designs your invitations to the staff who help to clear the venue at the end of the night. When it comes to the wedding day, you need to know that you have booked the best people for the job. The best way to find the right suppliers is through referrals by friends, family, and the best wedding planners.

wedding-seaon-blog-05 View Our Award Winning Planners

Do you have a realistic budget set out?

If you have a set wedding budget, you will need to decide how to allocate it. How much can go towards the venue, wedding dress, and photographer with enough left over for all the other elements? If this is your first time planning a wedding or an event, it is completely reasonable to think that you will have no idea what these things cost! For example, before starting Pink Book, we would not possibly have been able to tell you what the average cost for wedding flowers or a photographer would be.

Think of your wedding planner as your “bank manager” – there to manage your budget and make sure that you don’t overspend. It is easy to get swept up in the wedding fever and it might seem like a good idea at the moment to spend ‘X-amount’ of money on your wedding flowers. Your coordinator will be there to let you know if this is a good idea or not.

And on the subject of budget, you might be tempted to think that you will save on the budget by not getting a wedding planner, but this is not the truth. The reality is that by hiring a wedding planner you will be saving yourself time, stress, and money. A wedding planner will take the stress out of finding the correct suppliers who will suit your style, personality, and budget.

Our 9 Wedding Budget Tips

How much does a wedding planner cost?

The cost of a wedding planner varies based on the service they deliver. A wedding planner doesn’t need to take control of your whole wedding! They can assist with their services in the following ways:

  • A once-off consultation to get advice and ideas
  • An on-the-day service, to just take control and make things run smoothly on the big day
  • or a full wedding planning service where they assist from the first step, right through to execution on the day

Professional events planners offer different packages for their services. They can either offer you set prices or alternatively some planners work on a coordination fee that is between 10-20% of the total cost of the wedding. The size, style, and urgency of the wedding all influence the price.

Whether you decide to just consult a wedding planner for a once-off consultation, an on-the-day service, or for full coordination, it will be the best decision you make.

Pulling it all together – on your own OR with the help of a professional

Once you have booked all your suppliers, it will be time to pull it all together. You need to make sure that all the suppliers work together to create the final look and experience. This is a process that starts with the initial design and styling and ends when the final guest leaves the venue.

Getting a wedding planner means that you can hand all of this over to someone you can rely on. Usually, couples who decide on getting a planner are couples who don’t have the time to plan their own wedding. Or couples who really don’t know what they want or where to start with planning such a big event.

If you have someone in charge of coordination on your wedding day you can focus on what is most important. You can take your time and be relaxed when you get ready. You don’t need to worry about all the service providers showing up on time or things running smoothly. All you need to think about is tying the knot with the one you love; celebrating the day with your closest friends and family.

(someone else will be in charge of cleaning at the end of the day) Partially Written by: Bride Sidekick • www.bridesidekick.co.za

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