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Wedding planner vs venue co-ordinator: who’ll actually run your big day?

If you’re looking to get married any time soon, you’ll doubtless be starting the process of working out what needs to be done to get your wedding off the ground. One thing you may have noticed is that, when you research and eventually choose your wedding’s location, it’s likely to come complete with a ‘venue co-ordinator’ – which sounds pretty handy. But what does one of these actually do? How much involvement in your big day do they have? Does their existence mean you won’t have to employ a wedding planner? Do they do the same thing? Well, let’s take a look, shall we…?

Wedding Planner

Who do they work for?

First and foremost, think about who pays a wedding planner and who pays an event co-ordinator. The answer for the former will be you; the answer for the latter will be the venue. To that end then, a venue co-ordinator ultimately works for the location holding your wedding – they’re paid by the venue and take instructions from its bosses. Conversely, a wedding planner will only work for you and so should be entirely independent of the venue. And, ultimately, they’re accountable to you alone.

Who does what?

Based on who actually employs them then, the roles of these two professionals are fundamentally different. The venue co-ordinator will essentially be responsible for sorting out all aspects of the location and getting it ship-shape for the big day – and, should you be holding your wedding in the UK capital, that could be anywhere from a cool, quirky, eclectic bar or a major hotel, one of the most sought-after of West End London wedding venues. In practice, this means they’re your – and the wedding planner’s – point of contact at the venue, will make sure its appearance and décor is as it should be and will deal with any questions or queries about the location you have at any point. So they’ll also likely be at the wedding – or reception – itself to ensure all runs smoothly, not just be available before the event.

Conversely, a wedding planner’s primary function tends to be the planning aspect – first and foremost, they’re employed to design and style your wedding. Yet, given they oversee the planning too, of course, they often run its creation and realisation as well. So, in most cases, the planner should be there with you – effectively holding your hand (maybe, depending on your stress levels, quite literally!) – through the whole thing; from its inception, through researching and choosing a location (again, perhaps a Central London wedding venue?), helping with budgeting, employing suppliers and making sure the look and feel of the day is all as agreed and spot-on.

Like the venue co-ordinator, they’ll almost certainly be at the event too, overseeing the likes of the seating plan and the day’s timeline. They’re bound to be called on to ensure emergencies on the day are sorted out as well – such as a supplier not turning up or a stain afflicting a dress.

Wedding Venue

The best of both worlds?

In the end then, despite their different roles, a wedding planner – your right-hand (wo)man throughout the process – and your venue co-ordinator – your point of contact and where the buck stops at the location – are both critical to the smooth running of a modern wedding. As mentioned, they’re highly likely to work together on your event (at times, pretty closely), with the aim of making sure your day goes off as smoothly and perfectly as possible.

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