day-of wedding coordinator watching wedding from distance

What Is A Day-Of Wedding Coordinator?

Aug 25, 2020
By Wedding Spot

A couple’s wedding is one of the most exciting days of their lives. It can also be one of the most stressful. A wedding is a big event with a lot of planning and preparation. But once the planning is done, all of those plans have to actually be executed. As a bride or groom, being present for your wedding and enjoying the day can be difficult if you have to make sure all of the details are being executed properly. It’s for this reason that many couples turn to a day-of wedding coordinator to help.

What is a day-of wedding coordinator?

A day-of wedding coordinator — also known as a wedding day coordinator, a day-of wedding planner, or simply a wedding coordinator — is a couple’s best friend on their wedding day. While the couple prepares for, and enjoys, the day, it’s the coordinator’s role to make sure everything goes according to plan. They focus on everything from making sure everyone is seated and ready for the ceremony to ensuring that specialized meals are served to the correct people. Every small detail is within the coordinator’s purview. Put simply: They’re the on-site authority making sure that everything goes off without a hitch.

What is the difference between a day-of wedding coordinator and a full-service wedding planner?

Wedding planners generally help with all of the planning and coordinating leading up to the day of the wedding. Full-service planners are with couples from the start and usually take on the day-of coordinator role once the day arrives. A day-of coordinator, however, is usually more specialized in that they assist on the execution of the wedding. This service is often for couples who have planned the wedding themselves and need someone to take the lead once the day gets close. Of course, different coordinators offer different packages, so the services — both on the wedding day and in the weeks and months leading up to it — can vary.

How much do day-of wedding coordinators cost?

Coordinator prices vary depending on location, size and complexity of the wedding, services offered, etc. Generally speaking, coordinators charge anywhere from $500 to $2,500. Again, this rate is highly variable. So couples should take stock of what they need the coordinator to do and work with them on a price that makes sense for everyone.

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Should you hire a day-of wedding coordinator? Explore 5 reasons to consider it!

1. Day-of wedding coordinators handle the unexpected.

Planners and couples alike do their best to make sure everything is ready for the wedding day. But even the best laid plans can go awry. Experienced coordinators are experts in handling situations that can be uncomfortable or out of anyone’s control. They’re well versed in making sure that each issue is handled discreetly and quickly so that couples aren’t even aware of it. For example, if there are crashers at the wedding, the coordinator will ask them to leave. If traffic prevents the live music from arriving on time, the coordinator will find a solution. If the father of the bride is missing before the father-daughter dance, the coordinator will find them. And so on.

2. Coordinators coordinate with your vendors.

A day-of wedding coordinator has many jobs, both leading up to and during the big day. One of their most important functions is coordinating with vendors. Coordinators typically meet with vendors before the wedding to make sure they’re aware of scheduling. They work with the caterer to make sure that they arrive on time and have time to set up. They make sure that any special dietary requirements are met and that meals, dessert bars, and any special food stations are set up and ready by the time everyone arrives.

Beyond helping with catering, a wedding coordinator is constantly behind the scenes working with the venue, florist, decor team, and other staff members. They make sure the tables are set according to the couple’s instructions, ensure that the officiant is on time and the ceremony starts when it’s supposed to, and that all vendors are ready. They can even work with the photographer to make sure that the couple gets the wedding photos they want.

3. Wedding coordinators help conduct the wedding rehearsal.

Aside from the day of the wedding, a coordinator also usually assists with the rehearsal, too. Coordinators make sure everyone is on the same page and knows where they need to be and when they need to be there. From the processional to the recessional, the coordinator lets the wedding party and family members know what is happening and the order it is happening in. They also work with the officiant to make sure that any and all religious parts of the ceremony are respected.

4. Coordinators stick to the vision.

Day-of wedding coordinators generally begin working with a couple about a month in advance. This gives them time to confirm everything with the vendors, work on the detailed schedule, timing, and floor plan, and most importantly, learn the vision the couple has for their wedding.

Weddings are extremely personal for each couple. It’s the coordinator’s job to make sure that the couple gets exactly what they want and have paid for. This includes making sure all decorations are in line with the vision and that the aesthetic is correct. For example, if the couple is going for a minimalist wedding, a coordinator’s task may be to make sure that everything brought into the space adheres to that. While the coordinator isn’t generally involved in the development of the vision, they are well versed in making sure that everything is in its proper place at the right time.

5. Day-of wedding coordinators make sure the wedding stays on track.

One of a coordinator’s most important jobs is to parse through the details, and the timing of those details. They go through every part of the event, making sure there’s enough time for every portion and that all vendors, wedding party members, and family members are informed of that schedule. They create, own, and modify the schedule as needed, as well as make sure that it’s flexible enough to respond to any needed changes. Doing this means that the wedding will move forward at the pace the couple set and that all of the activities involved in the event happen and are enjoyed by all.

Now you know more about day-of wedding coordinators!

Up next, learn about wedding planner cost and discover why you should — or shouldn’t — hire a wedding planner.

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Wedding Spot

The Wedding Spot blog is designed to help couples navigate every step of the wedding planning journey. From before the engagement to after you say “I do,” our goal is to give you the tips, ideas, and inspiration to prepare for your big day — and all that comes with it.