Today we're talking all about why you should not hire your friends to work at your wedding. Don't fall for this common wedding mistake couples make to save on costs! Having friends or family work the day of your event is one of the biggest wedding regrets couples experience.
Join us for valuable tips and a few stories about what we've seen as wedding planners when couples ask their friends to work the event. For expert wedding planning help, grab your FREE copy of our Floral Guide Cheat Sheet! From bouquets to centerpieces, this guide can help you figure out all the florals may you need for your wedding
The number one reason you shouldn't hire your friends to work your wedding is they may not be as experienced as a professional wedding vendor.
Even though they might be giving you a good deal or gifting you their services for free, you might not be getting the level of service you should expect. Services like photography, DJ, or catering all significantly impact the day of your event. It's critical on the day of your wedding that everything runs smoothly and, more importantly, on time. An inexperienced friend or family member may end up costing you more in the end. We see this all the time when it comes to preparation! Knowing what to do and when to do it is critical, and just like most skills, it only comes with experience. If your friend or family member arrives unprepared on the day of your wedding, there is little you can do to help or fix it.
Even friends who are professionals may be lazier about your wedding! It's effortless to prioritize their paying customers over your wedding. It would be easy to assume that you would understand since you're such good friends or family. Honestly, the main reason could also be because you are not paying (or paying full price). Why should they give you the same level of service?
You shouldn't hire your friends because you want them to enjoy your wedding and not have to work it! An excellent example of this is photography. When your photographer is your best friend or relative, they'll know most people at the wedding. Because they're mutual acquaintances, they quickly begin to lose focus on their task and why they are there. Instead of capturing once-in-a-lifetime images, they instead start visiting with friends, mingling and enjoying the celebration. We've seen a photographer walk around with a beer in hand, catching up with old friends for over an hour while the reception went on!
We couldn't stop thinking about how many pictures the bride and groom missed because they had a friend as a photographer instead of hiring a professional.
Another example is when a photographer brought his family (children) to an engagement session. The photographer frequently stopped to capture pictures of his children. He was friends with the couple and said it was such a beautiful backdrop at the venue that he couldn't resist. Again, while he enjoyed time with his family, he was also taking away from the couple.
The biggest issue should not be a surprise, and it's all about money.
Now, this subject alone can cause awkward conversations. Money can always be a weird subject with people, especially when talking with friends and family. When a friend or loved one offers their services to you, are they offering it as a gift? Will there be a "friends and family" discount?
What if their quote is more expensive than what you wanted to pay? Do you feel like you should expect the same level of service if they've gifted it to you? Are you expecting it to be free or heavily discounted?
It can be a bizarre conversation to have with somebody close to you, especially when discussing how they earn a living. The service they provide is something they're passionate about, and you don't want to offend anybody.
You should also consider how it can get worse!
What if you do hire them, and then you're not happy with their services? What if your wedding pictures are blurry, fuzzy, or have insufficient lighting? What if they were a distracted DJ, catching up with friends, and they missed a critical timing for your event. Or worse, they came utterly unprepared with the wrong or missing equipment?
Having a conversation later about your dissatisfaction with their services could ruin your friendship. Also, if you're not happy with their services during the planning stages, it's not easy to fire them. And if you do, should they still be invited to the wedding? Hiring friends and family to work your event complicates things. If you're planning a huge celebration, the last thing you want is additional complications.
All of these reasons combined can make it difficult working with friends as vendors for your celebration. You, as the couple, miss the opportunity for a wedding experience that is stress-free. The couple doesn't need to worry if somebody is thoroughly prepared or will show up on time and stay focused from the start of your wedding to the end. You wouldn't have to worry about awkward conversations regarding money or refunds when you hire a professional. A professional has a successful system in place due to previous experience and repetition.
Professionals add value to what they offer because they guarantee a product or service when it counts. Often numerous things go unaccounted for when a friend or family member has responsibility for services. For instance, having insurance in case their food causes guests to become ill. Did they apply, finalize, and purchase all permits required? Does your venue allow you to hire individuals instead of a business? A professional has answered all these questions beforehand. In contrast, a friend or a family member has no idea what they should be responsible for.
These are just some of the reasons we recommend hiring a professional for critical areas of your wedding( if it's in your budget, hire an expert for everything)! You'll feel so much less stress when you're getting into your wedding dress, knowing that seasoned professionals handle any issues that arise.
If it's just not in the budget, you can consider hiring friends, but first, look at your budget and ask if there's anything you can cut. Do you need favors over a real DJ? Should you be purchasing three gorgeous wedding cakes when you can deal with one and hire a real photographer? Make sure that you're not spending money in areas that you don't need. Hiring a pro ensures the success of your event!
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