Get These Answers Before Booking a Wedding Professional
Booking a Wedding Professional? Get These Questions Answers
Planning your dream wedding can be stressful; however, hiring the right team is critical to the process. Which wedding professional will be a good fit for me? Where do I go for advice? Who can I trust? Unless you are a wedding planner, then it’s likely that you are not planning weddings every day. It’s normal for couples to feel overwhelmed, frustrated, or confused. So, just take a deep breath and be patient with yourself. You’ve got this!
Tips for finding your perfect match…
• Do Your Research. It is important to do a little background homework before meeting or conversing with a wedding professional. Talking with friends who’ve recently wed is always a good idea. They can give you the do’s and don’ts, things to look out for, etc. Also, comparing prices and services in your area will give you a better idea of what your average costs may be. Figure out what it is that you like and don’t like. Wedding photography websites and forums can be a great resource regarding wedding photographers. All of these will help you be better prepared to ask better questions when meeting with a wedding professional.
• Consultations are a Must. The best way to interview a potential wedding vendor is face-to-face. This gives you a feel for their personality, style, and professionalism. If you are unable to meet in person, have a phone conversation, or even a Skype session, a wedding professional will go the extra mile to help.
• Ask Questions. There are no stupid questions! Be sure to get clear and concise answers to your questions. If there is something you don’t understand, have them to explain further. Ask as many questions as you want/need until you have a clear understanding. If a vendor gets annoyed or has a problem answering your questions, then they are likely NOT the one for you. The best wedding professionals will take the time to help ensure you are making the best wedding choices.
• Listen. Don’t just “hear” them….really listen. Pay attention to the vendor’s non-verbals, their body language. Are they confident and comfortable with their response? Do they look and seem nervous? Do you get a “funny feeling” about them? If something doesn’t seem right about them, then listen to your gut feeling, it probably isn’t, a true wedding professional is patient and honest.
• He Said, She said. Check references! It is no mystery that portfolios are designed to show off the best work. They may not represent the “average” wedding performance. However, real referrals from satisfied clients are hard to fake. Ask around and search the internet for reviews. Call up, both, client and professional references. Even if they give a rave review, often times you will be able to “read between the lines” if there were any problems or issues.
Questions You MUST Ask
1. How much experience do you have? How many weddings do you photograph per year? This is an extremely pertinent question. Your wedding professional will, ideally, have ample experience specifically for weddings. Experienced vendors will have a wealth of knowledge and information that ensures your big day will go smoothly.
2. How much do you cost? When factoring in experience, reputation, and expert skill, the price is often relative. Sometimes it’s good to keep in mind the saying, “You get what you pay for”, as generally, the most talented professionals have a higher price tag because they are worth it.
3. How much is the deposit?
4. What does that cost include? Packages often times vary. The lowest cost doesn’t necessarily equate to the best deal. Some higher packages may include services that you may have to pay a-la-carte for in lesser packages. These are things that you should take into consideration when comparing vendors and getting the best value for your needs.
5. What happens if I cancel? What happens if you cancel? Be sure to find out the refund policy of your deposit. Is it refundable under any conditions? And if so, what are those conditions? Also, find out if your wedding professional has a contingency plan? What if something happens to them? What is the backup plan?
6. Do you use a contract? A contract is designed to protect, both, you and the wedding professional. You should never accept a verbal agreement, as it will not hold up in court. So, if the vendor does not use a contract, RUN!
7. Are there any additional fees? Extra fees should be clearly defined in your contract. But, be sure to inquire about taxes, service charges, travel fees, etc. These things can add up quickly, a true wedding professional will let you know up front.
8. Do you carry liability insurance? You always want to make sure your vendor has liability insurance. This protects you in the event that some unfortunate accident happens on your wedding day. This also is an indication that this is a reputable business. Asking these questions will help you filter out and decide who is the best fit for you on your big day! At wedding professional will.
9. Are you a member of a professional trade association. For photographers (PPA) Professional Photographers of America or (WPPI) Wedding and Portrait Photographers International.