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Wedding planner smiling ready to answer questions before hiring her

Photo by Ann Ilagan Photography

The 10 Questions to Ask Your Wedding Planner

Hiring a wedding planner is an investment – and an important one, at that. Before sending over your deposit for this valuable member of your wedding team, make sure you’re hiring the right planner. We have assembled a list of the top 10 most important questions to ask your potential wedding vendor, and we hope these questions will help you find your perfect wedding planner.

If you are considering hiring Distinctly Yours Wedding & Events, we simplified the process for you by answering these questions ourselves. Below you’ll find the 10 questions that we consider the most important to ask before hiring a planner, and we’ve given our response along with each question. We hope this is helpful!

Bridal party with bride and groom in Milwaukee in blue and purple

Photo by Anya Kubilus Photography

1. What is your experience in wedding planning?

It’s crucial to understand the planner’s background and experience to ensure they have the experience to handle your day effectively.

Our response:

With our extensive experience in planning over 300 events, you can trust us to navigate the intricacies of wedding planning in Wisconsin with precision and professionalism. I (Marsha) have a degree from UW-Stout in Hospitality and Tourism Management with an emphasis in Restaurant Management, and have over 15 years experience planning over 300 weddings and events, ranging from backyard weddings to those with a guest count over 400; small intimate weddings and ones held in large ballrooms, farm weddings, camp weddings over a full weekend, museum weddings, urban and rural – the list goes on. We have a wide range of experience and depth of knowledge to plan and execute weddings with excellence.

2. Can you provide references or testimonials from past clients?

Past clients’ feedback can give you insights into the planner’s performance and the quality of their services.

Our response:

Our long list of satisfied clients and glowing testimonials attests to our commitment to excellence and our ability to deliver unforgettable weddings. We value these testimonials as they help communicate our true quality of work from the perspective of the client, and they help us to improve – it’s all about the growth mindset, after all! To exlore our many Google Reviews, follow the button below.

3. What services do you offer, and can you tailor them to our needs?

Make sure the planner can provide the specific services you require and is flexible in customizing their packages to match your vision.

Our response: 

Our customizable services include Micro Weddings, Wedding Management, and Full Service Planning. Each package has its own features, and we would be happy to match you with the service that best suits your needs, and customize based on the unique needs of your wedding. For more information, visit the Services tab on our website, linked below.

Table setting with natural colors at backyard wedding reception
Bride and groom walking in the woods on wedding evening

Photos by Donna Miller Photography

4. Do you have a preferred list of vendors, or can we choose our own?

Knowing if the planner has vendor partnerships or allows you to select your vendors is important for your decision-making process.

Our Response:

We do have a preferred vendor list and yes, we will work with vendors outside our list.  Yet, the main reason to have a preferred vendor list is because we have worked with them and can vouch for their excellence to our couples.  Having a vetted A-Team on your wedding day ensures your day will be all you expect and even more. I have seen the difference over and over again. 

5. How do you handle budget management and cost control?

Understanding their approach to budgeting ensures you can achieve your dream wedding without financial stress.  

Our Response:

Couples start planning with a financial comfort zone.  We then come alongside you to guide and discern what your priorities are, as well as your wants & needs for the wedding day. Initially in the Discovery Call, Marsha asks what their budget is, how they came up with it, and offers some education. Then,  we offer a budgeting guide as part of our proposal. Once hired, we have budget planning documents to guide you through every step of the process, and our expertise to support you along the way during our planning calls together.

6. What's your process for creating and executing a wedding timeline?

A well-structured timeline is vital for a seamless (and even relaxing) wedding day.

Our Response:

We have timeline building resources and expertise that we use to guide you through planning the wedding day, and our resources are robust and down to the minute. We have so many questions that we ask and answer on the front end, and from there, we personalize and create the timeline. Our years of experience and timeline building resources, along with asking the right questions, allows us to create the perfect, thorough wedding day timeline.

The next level is communicating the timeline to all of the wedding vendors, working through vendor contracts and their logistics, and merging the needs of all parties involved. Then, it’s looking into the small details to make sure that everything has been thought through, built into our planning process. So much thought and expertise goes into the right timeline!

Wedding ceremony chair setup at Leigh Yawkey House Museum

Photo by Portraits by India Lawless

7. How do you handle unexpected challenges or last-minute changes?

A good planner should have a plan for dealing with unexpected situations, ensuring your day runs smoothly.

Our Response:

Not much surprises us on a wedding day.  Even if things don’t go actually as planned, we are ever present to stir the shift and get things back on track.  It’s been said that Marsha’s superpower is staying calm under pressure – like a duch whose legs are pumping under the surface, but all others see is a calm, gliding exterior above the surface. We know we’ve done our job when we’ve solved the problem even before the Bride and Groom know about it. Our goal is that they never even know!

We also come prepared with staff to every wedding so that we can be working on setting up a wedding or reception, guiding guests to their next spot, or putting out fires all at the same time. When you hire us, you hire a team of pros.

8. Can you assist with theme and design development?

If you have a specific theme or vision in mind, make sure the planner can help bring it to life with creativity and flair.

Our Response:

Yes, absolutely! We are experts at hearing your design dreams or creatively daydreaming with you, and using our industry connections and know-how, we can help make your dream a reality. We have experience designing and executing countless types of weddings, whether doing indoor or outdoor weddings, intimate brewery weddings or grand ballrooms, creative venues like planetariums or botanical weddings, lakeside, camp, farmette, or even a winery wedding inspired by Italy – we know how to pull it off.

Bride and groom snuggling outside on wedding day
Bride running in the wind on wedding day

9. What is your approach to guest management and RSVP tracking?

Effective guest management is crucial for a successful wedding, so ensure the planner has a process in place.

Our Response:

In our wedding planning suite for couples who hire us, we have a Guest Tracker as part of the planning suite to use as a tool. It’s a very robust document that tracks all kinds of things, like dietary restrictions, seating arrangements, RSVP, and much more. With our planning system and expert guidance along the way, we are able to coach our couples in managing the many guests and all their details.

10. How do you handle multiple weddings or events on the same day?

If the planner manages multiple weddings, make sure they can guarantee their full attention to your event and address any potential scheduling conflicts.  

Our Response:

Because we have a deep bench with multiple lead planners and numerous wedding planning assistants, we are able to plan and execute more than one wedding per weekend. However, the team designated for your wedding will not be split between  your wedding and another – that team can solely focus on your wedding.

All that being said...

In conclusion, Distinctly Your Wedding & Event stands as the ideal solution to all your wedding planning needs. With our vast experience, personalized services, and meticulous attention to detail, we transform your dreams into a breathtaking reality. Trust us to make your special day distinctly yours, an event that you and your guests will cherish forever.

Let's keep this good thing going!

Want to learn more? Sign up for a complimentary discovery call where you can share your vision, and see if we are a good fit. We're here for you!