Do I Need a Wedding Coordinator & Venue Coordinator? - I Do Crew

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If your wedding venue has a Venue Coordinator you might think that you don’t need a Wedding Coordinator. But as an experienced Wedding Coordinator I’m here to tell you that this is not always the case. In fact the I Do Crew’s Wedding Coordinators often help couples on the day of their wedding at venues that also have a Venue Coordinator.

But it’s also true that not every wedding needs a Wedding Coordinator. Before we get to why, let’s get clear on what Wedding Coordinator does.

What Does a Wedding Coordinator do?

A Wedding Coordinator is the person responsible for making sure the wedding day or weekend is executed perfectly. A Wedding Coordinator handles logistics, manages the timeline, coordinating vendors and troubleshoots on the day.

At the I Do Crew we call our Wedding Coordinators, Wedding Day Managers and they usually commence working with our couples 8-6 weeks out from the wedding. You can read more about the inclusions within out Wedding Day Management package here.

Every wedding benefits from having someone be the primary point of contact for the day. If you’re planning a DIY Wedding, or a wedding at an untraditional venue it makes sense to hire a Wedding Coordinator. But what if your wedding venue has a Venue Coordinator?

Do I Need a Wedding Coordinator if I have a Venue Coordinator?

The answer to this question is; it depends.

If you’re having both your Ceremony and Reception at a Venue that’s primary focus is weddings, it’s possible that you won’t need a Wedding Coordinator.

However it’s important to clarify with the venue what ‘wedding coordination’ includes as this can vary significantly from venue to venue. Your Venue Coordinator may liaise with you about timings, set up and food and beverage, but there are many, many details of your day that they may not help you with. Additionally the person you consider to be your Venue Coordinator may not be there on the day at all, or they may leave before your Reception commences – handing over the duties of managing your ‘function’ to an operations team member who you may not have met.  

And then there’s your Ceremony. Whilst some Venue Coordinators guide the ceremony, there are some that don’t. And if your Ceremony is at another location, they will not be involved with this at all. If your Ceremony is at the same venue the Venue Coordinator will generally oversee set-up of the Ceremony and ensure guests are where they need to be and that you get down the aisle.  

Apart from confirming access times, requirements and restrictions, your Venue Coordinator does not liaise with your Vendors or Coordinate them.  Whereas this is something that your On the Day Coordinator will do prior to your wedding day and on the day itself.

What Else Does a Wedding Coordinator do that a Venue Coordinator does not?

Your On the Day Coordinator is your ‘advocate’, eyes and ears and extra set of hands throughout the day and into the night.  You will meet with them prior to the day and they will take the time to review your wedding and highlight any areas that need attention or may not work. Some, like us, offer support with your planning in the months leading up to your big day. 

The types of things your On the Day Coordinator does on wedding day varies for each couple and each wedding.  Generally though the On the Day Coordinator will assist with:

  • Setting up and styling not done by the Venue and your other Vendors, such as your florist.  
  • Vendor Coordination on the day and in the weeks leading up to the day so they are across all of the logistics and timings for things like bump in and bump out. And they will be on site to make sure that everything is being set up by your other Vendors in accordance with your Styling Plan.   
  • Prepare a Runsheet (timeline) that takes in everything that will happen from the moment you wake up until you say goodbye at the end of the night. 
  • And they will be by your side throughout the day, guiding proceedings such as family photos, your arrival at the reception, speeches, cake cutting, your first dance, bouquet toss etc etc.  

Whilst your Venue Coordinator will do their best to ensure you are happy, relaxed and comfortable during the day, it’s likely to be your Wedding Coordinator taking care of things such as;

  • ensuring guests sign the guest book
  • the cake knife you have especially chosen is on the cake table and then safely put away with your things at the end of the night
  • that the bathroom is clear when you want to use it
  • the Emcee is on track with their duties
  • that anyone delivering speeches, along with your photographer and videographer, know where to be when, etc, etc.

Your Wedding Coordinator has Been Hired by you

One of the key differences between a Venue Coordinator and Wedding Coordinator is that your Wedding Coordinator is hired by you. You hand select them and you pay them to work with you and your relationship develops accordingly.  Venue Coordinators are hired by the Venue and even though there are wonderful Venue Coordinators who care deeply about their clients, they are ultimately responsible to the Venue first and foremost. And there is no guarantee that the first Venue Coordinator you meet will be the one you work with on your Wedding Day.

 

Before you Decide

If you are weighing up whether you need both a Venue Coordinator and On the Day Coordinator we recommend you do the following things:

  1. Confirm with your Venue what they do and don’t do when it comes to setting up your Wedding and liaising with other professionals.
  2. Ask them what time they start working with you on the day and what time they finish.
  3. Confirm times for bump in and bump out for all Vendors – a short bump in time almost always require some additional professional help to ensure everything is set up on time for you.
  4. Share this information with the On the Day Coordinator you are considering and find out from them what they recommend in terms of services that may assist you to bridge the gap between what your venue does and what you need.

And one final tip when it comes to determining if you need both a Venue Coordinator and Wedding Coordinator; keep your priorities for your day in mind at all times. Whilst there are things that you may be able to do yourselves, that your Venue Coordinator does not do, if your priority is for you and your friends and family to enjoy your wedding without the stress of setting it up and making sure everything runs smoothly and on time, a Wedding Coordinator is a great investment.