Planning tricks the professionals use Wedding planning can be an exciting undertaking, but couples who have already walked down the aisle can attest that wedding planning also can be stressful. Ensuring all of the details come out right can prove overwhelming at times. Hiring a wedding planner is one way to alleviate some of the stress associated with wedding planning. Couples who do not have the money to hire wedding planner can borrow some of the tips and tricks professionals rely on when planning weddings. MAKE GUESTS THE FIRST PRIORITY Even though it may seem like weddings should be geared around couples tying the knot, many wedding planners advise couples to focus on accommodating their guests. Having a handle on the number of people who will be attending, any of their specific needs (allergies, mobility issues, etc.), providing a comfortable environment (addressing bugs, weather, seating shortages), and knowing how much space guests will require can make choosing a venue that much easier. 12 Dream Weddings RENT WHAT YOU DON’T HAVE Renting rather than purchasing items can save couples money. Wedding planners do not stockpile items such as tables, chairs and decorations. Instead, they rely on rental companies to provide what is necessary. According to Minneapolisbased professionals The Wedding Guys, even couples working with small budgets can enhance or elevate their weddings by working with rental companies. FLUSH OUT FOLIAGE Wedding planners know that flowers cost a great deal of money, especially flowers that are not native to the region where couples are getting married. The process of making arrangements can be time-consuming. Also, many flowers no longer produce strong scents because they’re bred for longer stems and a lengthy vase life. Interspersing potted plants with arrangements that are lighter on blooms and heavier on filler can help cost-conscious couple stick to budget. TRUST VENDORS’ ADVICE Wedding vendors tend to know one another and can be good sources of information. A wedding photographer, for example, may be able to tell couples which reception venues photograph particularly well, and a reception manager may know which DJs or bands are best at getting guests on the dance floor. NEGOTIATE BEFORE SIGNING THE CONTRACT Wedding planners understand that vendors may be more willing to offer perks or extras rather than adding up a la carte pricing before the contract is signed. This way they secure the reservation on good will. Negotiating for more later on may be difficult. GET ORGANIZED Organization is key. Brides- and grooms-to-be may want to enlist friends or relatives with a flair for organization to help with details. Borrowing tricks from wedding planners can help couples save money and avoid stress.