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  • Alexis Alvarez

7 Reasons You SHOULD NOT Hire a Wedding Planner

Photo: Alana Lindenfeld Photography

If you recently started planning your wedding, you’ve probably found yourself at least once searching “do I need a Wedding Planner?” And while usually my answer is a resounding yes, years of working with couples who are planning their wedding, many great and several not-so-great, here are my signs that working with a Wedding Planner is not for you.

You don’t want to have a wedding.

This sounds like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how many couples we’ve tried to help who come to us, usually with limited notice, saying that they’re overwhelmed with the process and want someone to guide them through it and what we discover after weeks or sometimes months working together is that they’re not overwhelmed with the process, they don’t actually want to have a wedding, usually because they don’t value the wedding experience and have trouble justifying the cost, and were talked into the idea by a partner or family member.

You can’t make decisions.

Some couples come to me because they struggle with decision fatigue and are looking for someone to distill options for them. We love that! We have worked with dozens of talented wedding vendors in Chicago and know all of the players. We know their personalities, their styles of work, their price-range, and can easily pair couples who are interested in only a few tailored options with the right partners. But sometimes a couple comes to me and it’s clear they can’t make decisions and that’s a problem because at the end of the day, even if I give you all of the right information and send you a dotted line to sign, if you won’t sign it because of whatever reason, I can’t make you sign it and we can’t make progress.

You don’t like to hear the word no.

I love hyping couples up. Like seriously, when I can spend an hour of my day telling someone how much I love their ideas and all the fun ways I think we can execute their vision, it makes my entire day. But sometimes it’s my job to tell people that their ideas won’t work the way they think they will or that an expectation is unreasonable. I’ve been a part of nearly 100 weddings in my career and the honest fact of the matter is that sometimes, I just know better than you, and in my opinion, that expertise and lived experience is part of what you’re paying for, so if you can’t receive that candid feedback, a planner might not be for you.

You think a Wedding Planner is a glorified assistant.

My job has a lot of facets: people coordinator, time bender, space fitter, vibe manager, idea generator and sometimes appointment setter, envelope stuffer, and errand runner. But let me be clear: Wedding Planners are not assistants. We are skilled connectors, designers, and logistics magicians, but not assistants for you to boss around for a year.

You can’t meet deadlines/answer emails.

Planning a wedding is a fluid and layered process. When we’re working with couples who can’t complete their tasks, it pushes our progress back and makes the entire planning process rushed and kind of yucky. Even if you’re working with a Full Service Wedding Planner there are still hundreds of decisions and sign offs you’re going to have to give throughout the process and if you can’t do that, I can’t do my job.

You can’t follow a process/let go.

I call this my “letting go of the rope” conversation. I have it with all couples twice: during the initial sales process and about 30 days before the wedding. It means you have to be able to follow me and trust me to do my job. If you can’t follow a process and let go when it’s time to let go, you’re guaranteed to end the relationship feeling like the investment wasn’t worth the money, because you didn’t let the process do what the process does.

You don’t want to hire a Wedding Planner.

Another should-be no brainer, but I can’t tell you the number of times I get on calls with couples who spend our entire info call bashing my profession, but ending each criticism with “but all of my friends who have gotten married said I definitely should have at least a day of coordinator.” HARD STOP. If you don’t believe in the service, don’t buy it. Please. Because then I’m going to spend our entire relationship trying to prove to you that it was worth it when in the end, no matter how flawless the service is, it will never have been worth the money to you because you were never bought in.

A Wedding Planner is a big investment and is definitely not for everyone. These are just a few reasons it might not be for you. Remember, if it isn’t a hell yes, then it’s a hell no.

Wondering if you need a Wedding Planner?


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