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Interview Checklist for Potential Wedding Planners

Here are key questions to ask when meeting with potential planners and coordinators.

  • Are you available on my wedding date?

  • What's the cost of the average wedding you plan?

  • What sort of services do you offer (day-of coordinator, full-service event design, or a la carte planning)?  Do you create the overall vision, or are you more of a producer who brings in an event designer?  Do you handle event styling?  Do you do day-of coordination?

  • If you do both planning and coordinating, what is really your specialty?

  • How many weddings have you planned?

  • How many weddings will you be working on at the same time as mine? 

  • Have you planned any other weddings at our site?

  • Do you handle vendor services, contracts, and payment processing? (Some planners will request a lump sum and from there, handle hiring and paying vendors for you. Others will ask you to cut the checks for vendors yourselves. It’s generally best to pay vendors directly instead of through your planner. This way you will have more control over the contract and your budget.)

  • Are there specific vendors you like to use? What is your process for selecting and hiring vendors? How are we involved? Are you offered client discounts for any vendors that you work with?

  • Do you handle guest list coordination and RSVPs?

  • Do you do destination weddings (if applicable)?

  • Do you handle rentals?

  • What was the most unique wedding you ever planned?

  • What are some ideas you have more pulling off our vision (if applicable)?

  • What is your secret for staying calm under pressure and dealing with day-of disasters and mishaps?

  • How many meetings will we have? Do you come with us to all our relevant meetings? What are the steps we will go through?

  • What is the best way to get in touch with you?

  • How many people on your staff will be at the wedding?

  • What happens if you’re ill or otherwise unable to be there on the day of our wedding?

  • Do you have references? (Ask for professional testimonials as well as those from recent brides.)

  • How will you help me stay within my budget (stay away from things I can’t afford, find alternatives)?

  • Do you carry personal liability and professional indemnity insurance?

  • How do payments work? (A percentage of our budget? A flat fee?) Will there be additional expenses on top of your base fee? (Travel, parking, food?)

-- Kristin Koch