“Our wedding venue has a coordinator; do we need to hire a wedding coordinator?”
I hear this question fairly frequently and I know other wedding planners do, too. We welcome venue coordinators with open arms – they’re an essential part of a vendor team! Weddings with a wedding coordinator and a venue coordinator usually run the smoothest (hello, dream team!). I’m thrilled every time I learn that a new-to-me venue has a venue coordinator onsite during weddings. They’re wonderful resources! A venue coordinator knows the ins and out’s of the venue from where the chairs are stored to where and how vendors can load-in and load-out.
So, what’s the difference between a venue coordinator and a wedding coordinator?
A venue coordinator works for the venue. They are onsite at your event to make sure the venue is fulfilling its obligations. They’ll act as a liaison between your wedding vendor team and the venue’s operations team, including the catering team if the venue provides in-house catering. They open the doors for wedding vendors, they may help set tables and chairs, and do much more.
A venue coordinator monitors the event to ensure you, your guests, and the wedding vendor team are staying within the venue’s guidelines. They may be the ones to call it when your rowdy, drunk cousin needs to leave or when the DJ needs to turn the volume down.
A wedding coordinator works for you. Your wedding coordinator is there to serve as your representative and advocate on your big day. They are working to make sure the vendors you’ve hired are fulfilling their obligations to you on top of running your timeline. A wedding coordinator runs your timeline and acts as the liaison between you and your wedding vendor team. They ensure the photographer is in the room for toasts, that the DJ knows how to pronounce your last name before entrances and your great aunt has the decaf coffee she wanted.
The wedding coordinator or wedding planning company that you hire will be there on your wedding day. Venues tend to have high turnover and venue coordinators come and go. The person you met a year or two years before your wedding date may not be the one you see on your wedding day.
Recently, more wedding venues in the DC area are requiring couples to hire an outside wedding coordinator or wedding planner. Having both a venue coordinator and a wedding coordinator on your team will only set you up for a successful, stress-free wedding day!