WHAT'S THE REAL DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A WEDDING PLANNER AND A VENUE COORDINATOR?
Congratulations on your recent engagement! I’m sure your head is a whirlwind of love, happiness, and now the stress of planning your wedding. But it doesn't have to be overwhelming, that's what wedding planners are for
A question many couples ask in the beginning stages of wedding planning is “our venue already has a coordinator, do I also need a wedding planner?” The answer to this question can vary depending on the couple’s idea of what they want their big day to look like, but the majority of the time you will want to hire a wedding planner.
While it may seem like these two jobs are very similar, there are some major differences between venue coordinators and wedding planners you’ll want to keep in mind when making your decision.
The main difference between these two positions is that a venue prioritizes the venue while a wedding planner prioritizes YOU! This doesn't mean that a venue coordinator doesn't care about you, but the extent of their job is the venue. They will assist with catering, staffing, and bar services; but not much more than that outside of their venue. A wedding planner will be able to organize and execute all of your wildest dreams for your wedding. Stationary, flowers, the cake, decor, set up, break down, etc. You name it, a wedding planner can do it.
Another difference is a wedding planner will be there for you from start to finish as long as you want them to be. They will attend the rehearsal dinner, the bridal shower, and be the first one to arrive the day of your wedding and the last one to leave. A wedding planner will be there every step of the way to ensure everything runs smoothly. On the other hand, a venue coordinator will only be in attendance when you are physically at their venue. So if your ceremony is being held at a different venue than the reception, the venue coordinator will not be available to help at those different venues.
The last and maybe the most important difference I’ll talk about is money. Venue coordinators are ultimately looking to make the most money they can for their business, so sometimes their catering/bar packages can be crazy expensive. A wedding planner will have your back and outsource to different vendors to ensure you stay within your budget.
If you want more information check out DPNAK Events blog post, “Venue Coordinators vs. Wedding Coordinators: There IS a Difference.” This blog does a great job explaining the crucial differences without talking poorly about either profession.
At the end of the day, these two roles are very important to planning your wedding and they ideally should be working together!! A venue coordinator has intimate knowledge of the venue while a wedding planner has intimate knowledge of you and your style. Now what are you waiting for? Start planning your dream wedding!