wedding vendor

Things Your Vendors Won’t Tell You


They Think You Need a Wedding Planner

Many top vendors will not work without a planner, but those who do will secretly wish you had one.  Planners know to ask vendors about important issues like parking and space needs, vendor meals, rain plans, and so on. Without a planner, vendors know they may encounter problems on the day-of, from problems with parking and loading to space planning.  Since clients don’t know enough about what vendors do to even ask the right questions, lack of a professional planner means a lot is left up to luck.  Even those clients who do ask the right questions often don’t anticipate how difficult – if not impossible – it will be to see to the needs of multiple vendors while also seeing to their own on their big day.  While all this may sound like a vendor problem and not a client problem, if the equipment or service can’t be delivered properly, then it will be the couple that loses out.

If you’re using a day-of planner, be sure to pass on all of your vendor contracts and make sure they are fully informed of everything you have arranged.  Otherwise, they may be unpleasantly surprised and unable to help you at the last minute.  So Nova Wedding Style will tell you what your vendors wish they could – yes, you DO need a planner!

It’s OK to Ask about Etiquette

Not sure if you need to supply a vendor meal or tip a particular vendor?  Just ask.  They don’t mind and will be happy to let you know their expectations and policies. It’s common to hear that any vendor who will be there for the duration of the event, or perhaps even for a significant part of it, should be provided a meal. It’s still a good idea to ask, however, since some vendors may have dietary restrictions or may even pass on the meal. Either way, there’s no point in wasting money on meals they can’t eat.

They Know Each Other

It’s likely that many of your vendors are already acquainted with one another.  Often referred to as “friendors,” vendor friends often find themselves working together frequently because they either recommend each other, or are recommended by mutual colleagues.  Preferred vendors aren’t just for venues – vendors prefer to work with other vendors whose work and professionalism they know and respect.  So if it seems like everyone already knows everyone else, that’s a good thing.

You Can Wait for a Reply to Your Email

Vendors really hate it when someone emails on a Friday and follows up Monday, implying they have waited too long for a reply. Vendors spend Friday – Sunday working nearly non-stop, and then usually use Monday to sleep and rest. If you email on Friday, expect a reply no earlier than Tuesday. You certainly don’t want your vendors replying to other people’s emails at your wedding, so be patient waiting for a reply to yours – especially if your wedding is still months away! Most vendors won’t turn their attention to your event until 2-3 weeks in advance, and some not until the week of.

It’s Not Over-Priced

Vendors hear a lot of complaining about wedding prices, and the oft-floated theory that simply using the word “wedding” means a higher price.  If a wedding is priced higher than a birthday party, it’s because weddings are structured in a way as to be more costly and time-consuming for the vendor.  For example, weddings adhere to a strict schedule built around the couple’s timeline, and this affects when and how vendors can deliver and set-up.  A birthday party does not require that a vendor deliver 3 hours before the start, and then wait until after a ceremony or first dance in order to begin working.  They also don’t usually require coordinating a loading space with multiple other vendors, or working around the space needs of 5 other companies also setting up in the same location. And we’ve never seen a birthday party require turning a ceremony spot into a restaurant and nightclub in 30 minutes.  

Finally, weddings are among the most formal and demanding events, requiring everything be simply better, from uniforms to the quality of rentals.  Any lapse could find a vendor in the dreaded position of “ruining the most important day” of someone’s life.  That’s a lot of pressure! 

Cover Photo: The Easy Pour Mobile Bar; photo by Emily Hancock; venue Rillhurst Farm