The newly engaged have been ringing our phone lately. While planning a wedding and all the elements that go with it is a big part of what we do, just as important is providing information to couples.
We work with couples to develop a budget and make sure they don’t get caught by those pricey pitfalls that most don’t think about. So here are some things to consider so you don’t get caught up in hidden costs:
1. Entertainment – Extended playing time, a large venue requiring additional equipment, or asking a band or DJ to provide music for your cocktail hour or ceremony can add costs. Before you book any entertainment clearly explain the layout of the space, know what is to be provided and when. If they want to add in extra equipment or charges make sure you understand why it’s necessary before you sign a contract.
2. Postage – Most don’t consider this cost when ordering their invitations. Simpler invites are often cheaper. Oversized, awkwardly shaped and bulky invitations will cost you more the send and get back. If you want to save, skip multilayered cards, which can bulk up quickly.
Alterations – The cost of a wedding dress usually doesn’t include alterations or steaming. It takes time and money to have it done. A simple hem can be less than $100, but completely rebuilding a bodice or moving zippers can be more than $500. Be sure you know what the charges will be for alterations before you purchase a gown.
Encores – So many time a reception is about to end and the couple doesn’t want it to. Ask your entertainment to do a few more songs and delaying the venue staffing from cleaning up will cost you. Some venues won’t even allow it. Factor in plenty of time for getting dressed and taking photos and create a realistic timeline. Get overtime costs in writing ahead of time so you’ll know the cost to keep the party going.
Delivery Fees – Chairs, linens, flowers all have to be delivered and often times the fees to do so are not included upfront. Fees can be from $50-$500. With rising fuel costs many companies are raising such fees. Ask about the fees. You might save money by renting items from a more expensive company that includes delivery costs at no extra charge.
Taxes and Tips – Uncle Sam will be a part of your wedding like it or not. Often pricing does not include tax. As for tips to vendors it customary to tip those who work hard to make your wedding wonderful. Our advice to clients is to add a third of your total costs to your budget for tips and taxes.
Cake and Cork Fees – This cost depends on your venue. If your cake and drinks are provided by your reception site there should not be any additional charge. However, occasionally having an outside baker or bringing in drinks can raise the price. Your venue’s workers are responsible for slicing and serving each piece, then cleaning the dishes and should be paid for such.
Cleanup – You should only have to consider this if you’re paying a flat fee to rent a space. Anticipate fees for garbage removal, freight elevator use and cleaning. Most full-service venues require same-day setup and cleanup. So if you’re getting married on a weekend, expect to pay time and a half for labor, and if your party goes into the wee hours of the morning, you may face extra charges for cleanup.
Outside Vendors – Many venues have a list of prefered or exclusive vendors. These vendors will often pay a percentage of their income back to the venue and you are required to use them. If you wish to use someone who is not an approved vendor there may be a fee of 20 percent or more.
Know what your costs are upfront so there are no surprises. A professional wedding planner can help you avoid the extra costs and often obtain better pricing for clients. Contact us for more information www.pierceevents.net