Congrats again on your engagement! It’s time for Part 3 of what to do now! (See Part 1 & 2)
Once you have created your budget with those involved in the finances of your big day, I recommend getting your main vendors reserved. Top vendors and locations will book 6-12 months in advance. If you have specific locations or vendors in mind that you just HAVE to have, definitely call them first.
Remember to keep these things in mind when booking any vendor:
– Do they have your date available?
– How many other events do they book in a day? (you don’t want to get a vendor that over-books)
– Quality of service (check portfolios, reviews, social media, etc.)
– Know all fees up front (any savings or extras like travel fees, or delivery charges)
– Deposit requirements & Balance Due requirements
– Do they have any specials?
– Make sure there is a contract to sign
– Professionalism – Do you get along with the personnel/vendor(s)?
**Keep in mind that weekends will be the busiest, and full price point. If you are willing & able to do a weekday/night wedding you might get a cheaper rate.**
You will probably have some of your own specific requirements to look for, as well.
The hard part about choosing vendors when you are unsure of where to start is just that: where to start. If you are not sure exactly who you would like to use for photos, food, for a venue, etc., ask around. Word of mouth recommendations from friends or family is still the most trusted way to narrow down your options. Or, find a former bride that is a friend of a friend, or related to your aunt’s niece’s cousin that has similar style and get some valued “do use” or “don’t use” info.
The great part about so many options is you can surely find exactly what you are looking for when you DO know what you want. And, if you have a short engagement, still give those vendors you really want a call! They may have an unexpected opening!
I am including the checklist I always give my brides when they book to get you started on your “to-dos”. Happy planning!!
Originally published November 2, 2015
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I was born and raised in Edmond, OK and love the town so much I stayed here to raise my family. I am blessed with a romantic, caring, talented husband & two awesome boys. I started my career life as a wedding coordinator, and I still love event planning! Now I am founder/director of Heartbeat for Hope, a non-profit supporting education and rural development in Ghana, Africa. I love my fabulous family, friends, movies, binge-watching crime dramas, and home projects whenever I can.