What is the difference between a Wedding Planner and a Wedding Coordinator? The answer is much more simple than people realize. I like to think of it in terms of verbs. What action is this person doing?
A Wedding Planner PLANS your wedding, start to finish. They will:
Just to name a few!
Consider a Planner your Production Manager. They will take all of the guesswork out of what’s needed, where it’s needed, and when it’s needed. You get to do the fun stuff, like cake tasting. Your Wedding Planner finds you the cake to taste.
A Wedding Coordinator COORDINATES the wedding you have planned. The tasks listed above would instead be your full responsibility (and then some…eek!).
Consider a Coordinator your Production Director. Once your wedding is planned – meaning the guest list is established, vendors are booked, decor is procured, your vision is ready to be brought to life – you wrap your plans up in a little box with a pretty bow on top and hand them over to your Coordinator. They will ensure everything you have so carefully and meticulously prepared over the last year is brought to life and executed flawlessly. All you have to do is simply enjoy the day! Sounds glorious, doesn’t it?
A Wedding Planner and Wedding Coordinator also differentiate greatly in their level of communication with vendors. If you’re a more visual learner like me, check out this diagram below:
Short answer: It depends.
I will be the first to tell you a Wedding Planner is NOT for everyone, but I will also be the first to dare say a Wedding Coordinator IS for everyone.
But first of all, let’s bust the myth that any type of professional wedding help is for the rich and famous, because it’s simply not true.
In fact, a lot of other industry professionals and venue owners are beginning to require a professional coordinator in order to work with you. Yes, that means Aunt Jenny and your BFF Sabrina are no longer in the running unless they have a business license and are actively working as wedding professionals.
And this isn’t because they’re being mean and unfair, it’s because the expectations within the wedding world have shifted so drastically that a wedding day is no longer a simple affair comprised of wedding vows, a pretty bouquet, and cake. Most weddings have, at minimum, 8-10 different professionals arriving to do their job. Who’s directing them? Who’s outlining expectations? Who can they go to for questions? Who’s ensuring the day is running on time?
The more you hire, the more you do, the more you want – it’s all going to have an effect on the flow and timeline of the day. If there’s no point person to manage all of that, guess who it falls back on? You, my friend! And ain’t nobody got time to do that on their wedding day. And I can promise you, your other wedding pros that you’ve hired will have a much easier time dedicating their focus and energy on what you’ve hired them to do if they have someone to go to for all their questions.
This article from With Joy also talks you through this question beautifully.
As I mentioned above, not everybody needs a Planner, but everybody can benefit from a Coordinator.
A Wedding Planner is a great fit for you if you:
A Wedding Coordinator is a great fit for you if you:
So, are you still looking for more reasons to hire, at the very least, a Wedding Coordinator?
I give you 50 more reasons right here.