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Difference between an wedding planner and venue coordinator

What are the differences between a venue coordinator and a wedding planner?

This is a question that is asked a lot from couples when they have someone who works at the venue as a coordinator who is there to help with their wedding. Confusingly a lot of venues will portray to their couples that they will carry out the same service as an independent wedding planner but too often this isn’t the case. Having previously worked as a venue coordinator I can confidently say these two roles are very different but can work very complimentary of each other.

So what’s the main differences. Below I have broken down the two services offered by each of these positions to clear up who does what!

The Wedding Planner

You are able to work with an independent wedding planner before booking a venue. We are able to help you find your perfect venue by finding out your key requirements and non negotiables for your wedding day. We will get to know you both as a couple and work with this to find your perfect location. If you do decide to hire a wedding planner before you have booked a venue we will be able to really understand the look and feel of your wedding from the get go.

Once you have arranged a venue an independent planner will then be there every step of the way sourcing suppliers, reading over contracts, attending meetings and helping with the general styling and look and feel of the day. We will also be able to make sure all logistics are taken care of create a full schedule and distribute this to all suppliers so everyone knows where they need to be and when.

The number one priority of a independent wedding planner is to make sure your wedding day runs smoothly and that you are both relaxed, stress free and confident that you will have the most special day.

Weddings can take upwards of 250 hours to plan, so when you have a professional on board to take care of all the admin and supplier sourcing, this allows you to have more time to spend enjoying the process and look forward to the day, instead of worrying you have forgotten something or if a supplier isn’t going to turn up! In conclusion a wedding planner will take care of everything from start to finish and will ensure you will have the best possible wedding planning experience saving you lots of stress, time and money.

Photography by Helen Warner

The Venue Coordinator.

Once you have found a venue you like you would arrange an appointment with the venue coordinator to show you around. They would then take you on a viewing and let you know how weddings work at their venue and everything you need to know in order to hold your wedding with them. It is their job to sell you the venue and if you decide to book this venue they would then be your point of contact for any venue related questions going forward.

Usually a venue coordinator would manage any venue related aspects to the wedding such as how many guests you are expecting, menu choices, arranging a food tasting and finding out which suppliers you have booked. You would usually have a final meeting with them around 1 month before the wedding and go through the whole wedding day from start to finish including final guest count, where you would like things set up, what additional décor pieces you are having and sometimes how many bedrooms have been booked. This information would then all be correlated into a function sheet and this would then be sent to you to check over. This sheet would show everything you have agreed to pay for and exactly what the venue will do on the day itself. On the wedding day itself (depending on the venue) you may not have the coordinator you have been dealing with looking after your wedding it may have been passed to a Banqueting Manager or food and beverage team, this person should have a copy of your function sheet so everyone knows exactly what has been agreed.

Photography by Gemma Giorgio

Wedding planners and venue coordinators do tend to compliment each other when working together in the majority of weddings. Sadly some venues do not welcome independent planners and but other love them and know that everything runs smoother when there is a planner on board.

In summary an independent wedding planner is contracted by you, works for you and will go into every decision with you as the priority. Where as a venue coordinator is employed by the venue and will do everything they need to do to make sure the venue side of things is run correctly.

If you want to ensure you will have someone to manage every element of your wedding look into hiring a independent wedding planner.

Take a look at the services I offer and feel free to contact me to discuss how I can help you.


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