Are you planning a wedding or a honeymoon? Are you feeling overwhelmed from all of the details and options? Is crowdsourcing on social media leading you long list of information and vendors that do not meet your needs because your request was not detailed to fit your logistical needs and budget? Attending a wedding show or an open house is a great way to meet lots of vendors from that specific area.
Wedding Shows and Open Houses is a great way to compare different services all at once. However, you’ve got to attend with a game plan. What are you searching for? Which services do you need? Do you even know who to book and when? Check out our blogs for when to book which services:
And when you are attending a wedding show or open house here’s a few tips to prepare you:
Pre-register because this will save you time at the front entrance plus usually you will receive discount tickets to attend.
Create a wedding email address to collect all of your wedding information and inquiry details. This will later serve as a great holding place for all of your quotes and invoices, so wedding information doesn’t get mixed in with your personal or work emails.
Arrive early and plan to take your time to walk around for a while.
Create a sticker with your name, email, phone number, wedding date information on it. This will help when you are filling out inquiries for vendors to make sure they can read your handwriting.
Wear comfortable shoes… there will be lots of walking and standing around.
Limit the amount of people you bring to each event. Having a large only makes it difficult for you to pay attention to the vendors. Remember you are there to ask questions and hopefully hire them for your big day.
Go in with a list of vendors you need.
Go in with a list of questions to ask vendors so you can compare notes, responses and services.
Take photos of the different booths, especially the ones you really like.
Take photos of the cards and flyers that you want to call the week following the show, just in case you lose their information in the mix of everything.
Bring your calendar so you can sign up for appointments.
Bring two bags to gather information. One for the cards you are very interested with and another one to place possible backups.
The more of a game plan you go in with, the easier the planning process will be. The less stress you’ll feel, and you’ll use your time more wisely while in the presence of some many talented professional vendors.
Here’s a few questions to ask vendors at a wedding show:
How long have you been in business?
How many weddings do you average a year?
What education or training have they had?
Are they a part of any associations or networking groups?
How many weddings will they host a day as a company?
How will they handle postponements?
When will communication begin in the planning process?
What does their payment process look like?
Any show specials if you book right away?
Take your time when walking around and make your time worthwhile for attending. Wedding Shows are a great way to meet a wide variety of vendors where an open house at a venue will narrow down vendors that are familiar with that particular property. Both are great to attend when starting to plan your big day.
As a wedding planner, I typically spend majority of my time explaining the difference between an event manager (once called day/month of coordinator) vs a designer (partial planning) vs a full-service wedding planner and most of all WHY they even need a go to person vs planning it themselves. See these blogs for those reasons:
My job is to educate couples throughout the planning process and as their planner we take the stress out of the planning and set the focus on their love story. I love seeing our couples at wedding shows and open houses because then I can personally introduce them to vendors that I think would meet their vision needs, logistical needs while working within the budget they are comfortable in staying in.
My ultimate mission is to bring professional vendors and couples together to create magical memories while telling their love story through design and logistical planning.
We hope to build the trust with our couples quickly so that they fully allow us to guide them throughout the planning process. Trust is the most important characteristic you can have with your vendors. We’ve worked since 2000 to build professional and personal relationships with vendors and our clients. If you follow the owner Jennifer Ball on social media, you’ll quickly realize how genuine she is and how important relationships are to her. We try and take the time to get to know our clients firsthand so that we can create events and guests’ experiences that capture our couples’ personalities. We look forward to meeting you at the next open house or wedding show so that we can begin our journey together.
Check out our website for a full updated list of local events: