For many people, getting involved in wedding or event planning is a dream job, one that always seems ideal, yet so far away. The fact is, being a wedding planner can be a great career, and is actually attainable for anyone who finds themselves interested in this line of work, not to mention the wedding planner salary is pretty good!
Wedding Planner Salary Range
Determining the annual salary for a wedding planner is difficult, as it is similar to trying to determine the yearly salary of a contractor. Being a wedding planner is far different than working a job where one clocks in and out every day for a paycheck; in fact, it’s the polar opposite. Since wedding planners typically work for themselves, their yearly salary will be dependent upon a number of factors, such as how motivated they are to make more money, and how well they are able to attract new clients.
Like running any business, being a wedding planner is all about drumming up interest and allowing people to feel comfortable with working with you. In general, however, wedding planners who are established and are able to keep up a consistent amount of business throughout the year have their wedding planner salary range between $50,000 and $80,000 annually. The range is so large because some wedding planners work with high-profile clients who are willing to pay double or triple what a regular client would want to commit to.*
*According to the BLS, http://www.bls.gov/oco/
Wedding Planner Salary: Featured Schools
Wedding Planner Salary: Job Description and Outlook
Put simply, being a successful wedding planner is something that takes an immense amount of hard work in order to pull off correctly. For one, one must be extremely organized, as planning multiple weddings can be a disaster if organization is not viewed as a priority. In general, wedding planners meet with people who are looking to get married over a few different consultations, during which the couple explains anything and everything they wish to about how they want their wedding to turn out. If the couple decides to work with the wedding planner, his or her job is to make everything happen without allowing for any mishaps. It may sound like a lot to put on one person’s shoulders, and it is, which is why it’s ultimately important to have incredible organizational and motivational skills in this industry.
Wedding planners work with a variety of different professionals when putting together the perfect wedding; rental companies, venues, caterers – the list goes on. As one begins to do more and more repeat work with vendors, relationships and bonds can form, which many people in the industry refer to as “connections.” Without the right connections, being a successful wedding planner is close to impossible.
Wedding Planner Salary: Training and Education Requirements
In general, wedding planners do not obtain education specific to their field of work. More often than not, learning how to be a wedding planner is something that is either done (worst-case scenario) on the fly, or (best-case scenario) during the course of an apprenticeship with an experienced wedding planner.
Getting an apprenticeship is a great way to break into the field, because not only is it an efficient way to learn the process of planning a wedding, but it can also be a crucial way to gain industry connections, which many wedding planners say they value far more than any type of education. That being said, it is always recommended that one get at least a BA from a four-year institution, no matter what profession they plan to break into. College is a significantly important life experience, and many potential clients want to know that you do in fact hold a degree of some kind before they decide to work with you.
Wedding Planner Salary: Certifications
While most wedding planners are not certified in any way, it is indeed possible to attain certification in this field. The Association of Certified Professional Wedding Consultants (ACPWC) is an organization that offers a training and certification program for wedding planners who wish to boost their resume. Many wedding planners believe that clients look more highly upon consultants who are certified than those who are not. This, however, is something that is often debates, as some people feel that being certified is far from being necessary. In general, however, it is recommended that those who wish to excel in their field and rise to the top of their salary bracket do all that is possible to obtain certification.
Wedding Planner Salary: Professional Associations
There are many professional associations that wedding planners can use to build their business and make new connections. These include:
The Association of Certified Professional Wedding Consultants (ACPWC)
The Association of Bridal Consultants (ABC)
The National Association of Wedding Planners (NAWP)
The American Association of Certified Wedding Planners (AACWP)
Wedding planners do way more than most of us tend to think. There are so many minor details that most people don’t think about when it comes to weddings. A wedding planners salary and involvement depend on how hands-on or off the bride and groom will be. Wedding planners execute the vision of the bride and groom. They plan, organize, and oversee all of the wedding aspects. Some even go as far as setting up your honeymoon plans for you.
Although your wedding planner involvement may vary, there are some core things that he or she will be involved. The bride and groom should not worry if anything will go according to plan. Your wedding planner should help coordinate all venue meetings, help keep you on track with the budget, and handle all communication on your behalf. Here are a few qualities that your wedding planner should have.
- Very detailed oriented. Your wedding planner should be thorough and time-efficient. It may seem like the wedding is forever away, but it will be here before you know it.
- Excellent communication skills. Your wedding planner should communicate with you quickly, and clearly. The last thing you want on your wedding day is things falling through because of a lack of communication.
- Good eye for decoration. In some cases, your wedding planner could be a part of the design process. In order to do this, he or she needs to have an eye for design.
Budget-Friendly Wedding Ideas
We all know a wedding is a big time in life. Most of us spend our entire lives building a Pinterest of our dream weddings, not realizing the cost of those things. However, a beautiful wedding doesn’t have to come at the expense of going into debt or thousands of dollars. According to The Knot, The average wedding cost $30,000, but there is a way to have a wedding and not spend that much money.
1. Have Your Wedding During the “Off-Season”
Most weddings happen between May and October because of the nicer weather and pretty, sunny days. Therefore, most venues and vendors will cost more to book during this time. If you want to save money in this area, you can have your wedding during the off months of November through April. There are also high chances that vendors will be cheaper because of the lack of demand during the off-wedding season.
2. DIY Projects with Friends
One of the coolest things that I think a person can do at their wedding, that also saves money is to create things with your friends. If you are on a budget and have creative friends, this is the way to go. When I was planning a wedding, I had an all-in budget of $5,000. Everything had to be in that budget, wedding dress, decorations, and everyone gets paid. One of the ways that this was possible was because of DIY projects with friends. For instance, farm styled weddings are a huge thing right now. When planning this budget-friendly wedding, there are so many possibilities if you are willing to sacrifice a little more time.
- Wood Pallets are a big thing in the wedding world. You can go around your city to local hardware stores such as Lowe’s, Home Depot,etc., and ask for some of their used ones they may have laying around. People use wood pallets for cool DIY seating charts, pictures, and a ton of other things.
- Mason jars are a budget-friendly item. You can go to a dollar store and find mason jars for cheap. You can use mason jars for decorations or as dishes. Some ideas would be using them as a centerpiece to hold flowers or candles, or you can use them as cups to drink out of.
- Hay bells are a wedding favorite. One of the best ways they can be used is as seats in an outside wedding. They can also be used as a good photo booth opp at your reception.
- DIY wedding party gestures. Instead of paying to get something designed, printed, and mailed, you can create it yourself. It can come off cool and so much more personable if you ask your wedding party in a personalized way that you created yourself.
- Digital wedding invites. It’s the 21st century. Everyone lives on their phones. A cool way to save money is simply doing a digital wedding invite. You can create save the date or wedding invitations online for free! Just text your friends and family a link.
Lastly, if your friends have any skills that you need, consider using them instead of vendors. Your friends can help decorate, help create the flowers you use, help clean up the venue after, all things that can save you hundreds of dollars.
3. Location Matters
Having your wedding in certain locations can decrease the cost of your wedding significantly. If you want to save money in this area, besides selecting off-season dates, you can sacrifice location. Instead of having a destination wedding, or your wedding on the beach, you can have it at a place you may not have to rent. For instance, you can have your wedding in a nice backyard, or if you grew up in a religious facility(such as a church) that allows its members to get married there free of charge. Also, consider having your wedding in a nearby smaller town. The odds are that in a smaller town, you may be able to get a venue for cheaper. Your friends and family love you. They will be willing to travel a few extra minutes to see you on your big day.
Final Thoughts on the Wedding Planner Salary
All of this information, however, is not to say that being a wedding planner is easy, as it often comes with a large amount of stress and working long hours. However, those who are self-starters often find that working as a wedding planner is the perfect way to occupy both time and the mind, and can end up being a very prosperous career.
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