Shortly after becoming engaged, you no doubt realized wedding-planning can be a lot of work. Depending on where you choose to get married, you may be offered the chance to choose a wedding package that will include everything from the catering and cake, to the photographer, flowers and wedding entertainment. There are several considerations to keep in mind to help you decide whether to choose a wedding package or to find service providers on your own for each aspect of your wedding.
How Much Spare Time Do You Have?
The fact is, it takes a good deal of time and effort to interview and arrange all of the different services you will need at your wedding. If you drop the ball in hiring out a cake-decorator, a DJ, a florist, and so on, you will be extremely stressed out and trying to procure the services at the last minute. A good rule of thumb is it takes about a year to plan a wedding when you are doing everything yourself.
Choosing a wedding package, however, means these details are taken care of for you. You don't have to worry about scheduling conflicts with your photographer, for example, because he or she will be hired by the wedding chapel or reception venue to be there for your wedding. Wedding packages can work very well for brides who are having a short engagement period.
How Big Is Your Budget?
A wedding package is going to be one set fee. For that fee, you'll have a list of everything included, and "extras" will be your responsibility to cover. There will be no extra charges for the time it takes to decorate the chapel and reception hall with flowers, for instance; it's all included.
Hiring out services or handling them yourself can be more or less expensive. If you go the traditional route and book all service through professionals, then it will likely cost you more. If you have a cake-decorator and a DJ in your family or circle of friends, however, or if you plan to bake your own cake and have your fiance's band provide the wedding entertainment, then it will cost you less.
Compare your budget to the services you need and want for your wedding to decide which is the better option, economically speaking. Remember if you want to provide your own friends or family members for one of the included services, you may or may not be eligible for a discount. Be sure to ask!
How Unique Do You Want Your Wedding to Be?
Packaged weddings, while somewhat customizable, generally all follow the same pattern. You'll get to choose from a few different cakes, but you won't be able to custom-order your own, for example. You can pick your color schemes, but you may not have as many options as you would if you were to hire your own florist. Also, the DJ or band the venue uses may or may not match your personal style.
When you order your wedding services on an a la carte basis, however, the sky is the limit. Want to say "I do" while bungee-jumping? Do you want a Beatles tribute band to play "All You Need Is Love" for your first dance as husband and wife? These types of experiences are only going to be possible if you arrange your own wedding services.
No matter which way you choose to go, it's important to keep in mind your wedding will be one-of-a-kind simply because you and your new spouse will be surrounded by your family and friends on the happiest day of your lives. Decide whether it will be more special if you are able to customize everything or if you have been able to relax without stressing out over preparations beforehand, and keep your budget in mind, too. Congratulations on your upcoming wedding!