WEDDING & EVENTS
MONTEREY | CARMEL | PEBBLE BEACH

Questions To Ask Before Choosing Your Wedding Vendors

The majority of newly engaged couples have never planned a wedding before. Even if you have, every wedding is different, and sometimes it’s hard to know what questions to ask and expectations to have when you’re out of your element. Many vendors will schedule consultations or phone calls with you prior to you booking them, and it’s important to make sure you have a full knowledge of what they include, don’t include, how they work, and what they require. Their answers may ultimately decide whether or not you hire them, so make sure you’re using the list below to ask the right questions!

Venue

  • How many hours are included in the rental?
  • Is a ceremony rehearsal included?
  • Discuss load in and load out.
  • Where will guests enter and is there a coat check?
  • What lighting is included in the venue?
  • Are there electrical outlets available for use (and where)?
  • Where are the restrooms located?
  • Where does the caterer set-up?
  • Are there alcohol restrictions?
  • Are there decor restrictions?
  • Are there volume restrictions?
  • Does the venue do more than one event on the same day?
  • Does the venue provide any equipment?
  • What is their cancellation policy (be sure it’s in the contract)?
  • What is the price (make sure there are no hidden fees)?
  • Do they have a list of required vendors you must use?

 

Photographer

  • What does the package include and how much is it?
  • What happens if we need additional hours on wedding day?
  • Do you include engagement and/or bridal sessions in the package?
  • Will we receive digital files, or prints/albums?
  • Can we purchase additional files/prints and for how much?
  • How long will we wait to receive our photos after the wedding?
  • Have you worked at our venue before?
  • How many weddings have you done (and can we see samples of your work)?
  • Describe your photography style.
  • Will you be the one photographing our wedding?
  • Do you bring an assistant/second photographer?

 

Videographer

  • What does the package include and how much is it?
  • What happens if we need additional hours on wedding day?
  • Will we receive digital files, or discs/flash drives?
  • Can we purchase additional files/dics and for how much?
  • How long will we wait to receive our video after the wedding?
  • Have you worked at our venue before?
  • How many weddings have you done (and can we see samples of your work)?
  • Describe your cinematic style.
  • Will you be the one at our wedding?
  • Do you bring an assistant?

 

Caterer

  • What is included in our chosen package and what is the price?
  • Do you include gratuity on the bill?
  • Are there additional fees for servers and/or equipment?
  • Do you provide any rentals (plates, utensils, linens, etc.)?
  • How many staff members will be in attendance?
  • Do you provide beverages?
  • Is our package for a buffet, stations, or a plated dinner?
  • When do you need our final guest count?
  • Do you cut the cake (and is there an additional fee)?
  • Do you provide children’s meals (and are they full price)?
  • How do vendor meals work?
  • Are you able to prepare vegetarian, vegan, or gluten-free options?
  • Is a tasting included?

Cake

  • What flavors and options do you offer?
  • What will the estimated price of our cake be?
  • Do you offer other desserts as well?
  • Do you offer cake stand rentals?
  • Is a tasting included?
  • Do you offer organic, vegan, or gluten-free options?
  • How do we choose a design?
  • Will the cake be finished with buttercream or fondant?
  • Is there a delivery fee?
  • How far in advance will our cake be prepared?

 

Florist

  • Have you worked at or are you familiar with our venue?
  • Can I see examples of your work?
  • Do you have recommendations to fit the design we have in mind?
  • What is the estimated cost of our proposal?
  • Do you provide budget-friendly options?
  • Do you include a toss bouquet with the bridal bouquet?
  • Do the bouquets include any ribbons, charms, or other “accessories”?
  • Do you provide a “trial run” of the bouquet?
  • What is the delivery fee?
  • Do you just drop the arrangements off or will you set them up as well?
  • Do you include vase rentals?

 

DJ/Band

  • What is the cost of our package and what does it include?
  • What happens if we need additional hours on wedding day?
  • Do you provide an emcee as well?
  • Do you provide any lighting for the dance floor?
  • Will we need to provide you with a song list or choose from a database you provide?
  • What genres of music do you have to choose from?
  • Do you mainly work weddings or other types of events?

Rental Company

  • What items do you have available and what are the prices?
  • What is the delivery fee?
  • Do you include set-up and pick-up of the items?
  • Can we view the actual rental items before choosing?
  • What is your damage policy?
  • Will you deliver and pick up on our wedding day or do we schedule other days?

 

Bar Service

  • Are you licensed to provide/serve alcohol?
  • Do you provide the bar rental (if not one in the venue)?
  • Do you provide the bartenders?
  • Is glassware included?
  • Are mixers, ice, etc. included?
  • Do you provide non-alcoholic drinks as well?
  • Will gratuity be included on our bill?

 

Transportation

  • What is the cost of what we need and how many hours does that include?
  • Will you arrive early for pickup?
  • How many people can your transport at one time?
  • Are there any additional travel fees?
  • What transportation options are available to us?
  • Is there a limit to how far you’ll drive?
  • What happens if we’re running late on wedding day?
  • We you pick up/drop off at multiple locations?
  • Is gratuity included on our bill?

 

Hair/Makeup

  • What is the cost of services and what does it include?
  • Do you include a trial run?
  • Will one person do both hair and makeup or is it different stylists?
  • How many stylists will you provide to accommodate our group?
  • Is there different pricing for the bride, bridesmaids, mothers, etc.
  • Will you stay to touch up after the ceremony?
  • Do we need to provide our own foundation?
  • Will we travel to a salon or will you be on-site?
  • Do you provide organic options for the makeup products you’ll use?
  • Do you have samples of your work?

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