Q: My fiancé and I are planning on having a destination wedding and we’re trying to figure out if we need a wedding planner. After doing a little bit of research, it sounds like a destination wedding planner is a good idea since we don’t know what we’re doing. But it also looks like some hotels and venues have a wedding coordinator already, so we’re just not sure. Do I need a destination wedding planner?
This is such a great question, so thank you for asking it! I’ve recently spoken to a few different engaged couples all in different situations. After listening to them talk about their destination wedding and what they want, each of their wedding planning needs were very different and thus I recommended different solutions. The short answer to your question is that whether you need a destination wedding planner or not really depends on your situation. Every situation is a bit different, but I’m going to lay out the most common situations to help you figure out if you need a destination wedding planner.
You want wedding planning to be easy, economical and with little to no thinking involved.
The couples who fall into this situation are usually looking for the easiest option where they just show up and relax. Typically, this couple is looking for an all inclusive resort or a hotel/resort that can take care of everything. They don’t want to spend a lot on their wedding and they don’t really care about what it looks it like. These also tend to be couples who are either eloping or doing a very small wedding. The main goal for these couples is to take a relaxing vacation and have a nice little wedding while there.
If this sounds like you, what I usually recommend is that you don’t hire a destination wedding planner. It won’t make sense for you because you won’t be doing much planning. Instead, contact a travel agent who can recommend hotels and resorts in the areas you are considering and within your price range. Once you pick a hotel/resort, they will have a wedding coordinator onsite who can help you pick your wedding package which will be all you’ll need for your wedding. There is no thinking involved at all which is just what you want. You just show up and get married.
(Photo credit: Del Sol Photography)
You want a wedding that is unique, but you don’t have a huge budget.
The couples who fall into this situation want to make their wedding their own and are looking for creative solutions to get the wedding they want with the budget they have. They do care what the wedding looks like and want to customize some items, but they care more about having a good time with their family and friends. They want to make sure accommodations are easy, not super expensive and gives people the opportunity to stay together. Many of these couples are either looking for a private estate or home to both hold the wedding and stay at or a small boutique hotel they can have the run of.
If this sounds like you, you can go either way. A destination wedding planner will definitely be helpful for you because we have the contacts and creative ideas to help you create your unique wedding. However with a smaller budget, a full-time destination wedding planner doesn’t always make sense. You shouldn’t be spending half your budget on your wedding planner. So, hiring a destination wedding planner depends on how much time you have, how much planning you want to do, how much you can afford and whether having a planner is worth it to you. Another option you can consider is to hire a destination wedding planner for a portion of your wedding planning like venue and vendor recommendations, for their design assistance or do a planning session. We’ve worked with many couples in this capacity which gives them the chance to utilize our expertise but doesn’t come with our full-time services and investment.
(Photo credit: McAllister Photography)
You care about quality and you want a unique wedding and an experience for you and your guests.
The couples who fall into this situation care about making their wedding special, memorable and unique. They care about what it looks like, what it feels like and what happens at the wedding. They want to create an amazing experience for their guests and they want to be able to really spend time with everyone. They want to be taken care of and they want their guests to be taken care of. These couples are typically more Type A personalities with very busy professional lives who know what they like but don’t have the time to plan a wedding and pull it all together.
If this sounds like you, hiring a destination wedding planner is definitely the route you want to go. We’ll take all the guesswork out of wedding planning and are able to plan and design a wedding just for you. You’ll be involved throughout the entire process, but won’t have to do any of the legwork or time-consuming research, communication, logistics or design. We make the process and wedding planning experience easy, fun and joyful. And then once the wedding week approaches, we’ll be onsite to make sure everything is taken care of and goes smoothly.
(Photo credit: Emily Piraino Photography)
While these situations will not fit with every couple, there should be one you resonate most with and will help to guide you. But, if you still aren’t sure, contact us and we’d be happy to help you figure out what makes the most sense for you. And of course, if you need a destination wedding planner, you know who to call!