Wedding Planners Prices Guide: Different Packages + Tips (2023)

Congratulations, you’re getting married! Now it’s time to start planning.
You’ve seen the process in movies and even read through a how-to guide or two. No need to hire a professional wedding planner, right? Wedding planner’s prices are too high and they’ll probably just get in the way of your plans.

Consider this. There’s the venue, the rings, the gown, the reception. The list goes on and on. Unless you’ve done this before it’s easy to get overwhelmed and even easier to leave things for the last minute, or even forget things altogether. A professional wedding planner would never let this happen PLUS they already have relationships with vendors. Play your cards right and you may even save both time and money.

Quick Navigation

  • Average Price Of Wedding Planner
  • Why Do You Need A Wedding Planner?
  • Wedding Planners Packages And Prices
  • Wedding Planner Service Types

Frequently Asked Questions

Do You To Tip Wedding Planner?

How Much Does A Wedding Coordinator Cost


Average Price Of Wedding Planner

So you’re going to at least consider hiring a professional. That’s a great first step. The next step is to take a look at wedding planner prices to make sure that you can afford them.

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phuket_wedding_planner via Instagram

(Video) Creating Wedding Planning Packages and Pricing that Works for Your Wedding Planning Business

How much does a wedding planner cost?


There are several answers to this question.

When you’re shopping around make sure to keep an eye out for the type of charges they offer. Some will charge (sometimes with minimums) by the hour, usually between $75 and $300 per hour. Others charge a flat rate ranging from $1000 to $2500 on average.

It should be noted that this average completely depends on your area. A lot of the Southern States are seeing average total wedding planner costs as low as $2000 while average costs are inflated closer to $4000 in the Northeast.

How is the average cost of wedding planners calculated?


It’s pretty simple. The wedding planner’s cost is based on the overall cost of the wedding. It makes perfect sense that a wedding with a $200,000 budget has a lot more details to coordinate than a wedding that’s budgeted for $50,000.

Experts say that couples should set aside 15% of their wedding budget to go towards wedding planning.
Of course like any industry, there are bargains if you look for them, and there are high-end professionals well-worth the premium.

Now that you have a better idea of what all of this is going to cost you, it’s time to see if you can justify the expense.

Why Do You Need A Wedding Planner?

Wedding planners aren’t just for the rich and famous. Couples of any budget should seriously consider the options.

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phuket_wedding_planner via Instagram



The two most compelling reasons to invest into the cost of wedding planner are:

  1. Time
  2. Quality

Planning a wedding on your own is pretty much a part-time job. Do you really have the time in the day to commit 3 or 4 hours? Can you keep that up for 6 to 12 months? Many of us simply don’t have the time, and paying a wedding planner to do the work for us frees us up to focus on our jobs and other commitments that eat up far too much of our time.

On one side, we can’t afford to take time off work. On the other, time spent working makes more money than what you would pay a wedding planner. Rarely does it not make financial sense to hire a professional.

And then there’s the quality of the event. Covering your wedding planning cost means that everything is on time, details are to your specifications, vendors are known and trusted, and they’ve done this 1000 times. They know when to question vendors and how to hold them accountable.

The third is stress.

Less sleep and more stress is the perfect recipe for stress. Between your mother-in-law hounding you over the guest list, going over budget on one item and struggling to make up for it elsewhere, and having to re-do those DIY centerpieces because the glue failed you’re going to be (saying it politely) unpleasant to deal with from time to time.

Not only will you be compromising your mental and physical health – it’s much harder to stay fit and get into wedding gown shape when stress levels are up – you’ll be threatening the stability of your relationship with your future spouse. As much as he or she loves you, putting up with Bridezilla for 12 months is no easy task.

Why do I need a wedding planner if my venue has a coordinator?

Well, especially for a destination wedding, hiring a professional wedding planner is a must.
Starting from the beginning… Who is gonna create your color palette based on the latest trends and who is gonna design your wedding?

Generally, the performances from an on-site wedding coordinator are limited to the services that belong to the venue, while a professional wedding planner offers you a one-stop service coordinating not only the venue staff but all the other vendors and subcontractors. A destination wedding planner is a mix between your best friend and an orchestra maestro, she stands by the bride’s side on every little step of the planning, designing the inspiration theme and assuring the final outcome of the full project, consulting for personal topics like the bridal gown choice, hairstyle makeup, etc… styling the wedding decors for photographers, creating and following up the wedding checklist with the couple from the moment of the booking until the end of the event.
Usually, the destination wedding planner cooperates with the on-site wedding coordinator of the venue for the perfect result.

– Ilaire, Phuket Wedding Planner

Wedding Planners Packages And Prices

Okay. So you know you need one and you know you can’t afford to hire a wedding planner.

(Video) Wedding Packages and Pricing Pro Tips | Part 1 - Wedding Package Structure | Cameron and Tia

What do they do for you exactly?

To answer that question you’ll have to set your priorities.

  1. Do you want to save as much money as possible?
  2. Do you want a completely hands-off, no-stress service?
  3. Or do you want to keep your hands on the steering wheel, but have the support and guidance you need for a perfect day?

Answer these questions and consider these popular wedding planner packages and prices.

1. Day-Of: This option is designed for couples who love the challenge of the hands-on approach, but want to make sure that all of their hard work goes off without a hitch on the big day. Because the wedding planner’s duties everything to do with the big day – wedding day timeline, scheduling, and managing vendors, theme and decor, guests lists – this is the most popular choice for soon-to-be brides.

2. Partial: A partial wedding planner service is a relationship that starts on day 1 of your planning journey. The average cost of a wedding planner for this type of service varies depending on how “partial” you want the service to be and usually comes packaged with a minimum amount of hours. Above and beyond Day-Of services, you can choose help with specific aspects of the wedding.

  • Package A – $1500 to $3000: Choose any 3 items from the list we just mentioned.
  • Average Package B – $3000 to $3500: A minimum of 48 hours.
  • Average Package C – $3500 to $4000: A minimum of 64 hours.

3. Full-Service : This wedding planner price list includes everything you assume it to. As soon as your deposit is in, expect to sit down to discuss visions, dreams, tastes, themes, and color schemes. From there you can plan on scheduled follow-ups to discuss the progress your wedding planner has made and for your decisions on certain options. In short, they take care of everything and make sure you’re always in the loop.
$3000 – $8000 flat rate.

Wedding Planner Service Types

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Via Unsplash


So we’ve come this far. By now you’re probably wondering how this all plays out in real life. We found a few examples from around the country so that you can get real-world answers to the question ‘how much do wedding planners cost?’

Day Of:


Full Service:


Typically you would specify activities ahead of time, and this type of service usually comes with a minimum of 2 hours or more. This style is most popular with couples who are already neck deep in planning activities and realize they need a helping hand.

(Video) HOW DO WEDDING PLANNERS CHARGE? Revealing the pricing models and what they mean for clients

These vendors represent the averages that we’ve researched as well as typical combinations and packages. After all, these packages are based on the most popular expectations of soon-to-be couples. If you’re just starting your research, narrow down the type of service that you think you’ll need and use these figures to plan your budget.

What Events Included In Wedding Planning Fees?


Save to Wedding Planners Prices Guide: Different Packages + Tips (5)

Via Unsplash


Day-of wedding planners don’t stick with you from day 1, but what they do cover are the most important things, and could save you the most amount of stress and time.

  • Reception
  • Ceremony
  • Rehearsal dinner

Your wedding planner will make sure that all of this is coordinated, on schedule, on budget, and make sure that all of the paperwork and fees are accounted for. Rehearsal dinners aren’t usually standard, you may have to pay extra for this.


To keep your average price of a wedding planner from being subject to additional charges, you’ll have to keep an eye on your phone calls and emails. The downside to a Partial wedding planner service package is that they typically come with a fixed amount of those types of communication. Couples have a tendency to go overboard when they first hire a planner and use all of their calls in the first few months, and then have to choose between extra fees or no communication.

As long as you can pace yourself everything will be fantastic. Be mindful of how many hours are included in your package and choose from the following categories:

  • Catering
  • Rentals
  • Decorations
  • Invitations
  • Wait staff
  • Entertainment
  • Florist
  • Guest transportation and lodging
  • Venue and vendor selection
  • Organization: Scheduling, paperwork, communication…
  • Wedding prep
  • Day-of coordination
  • Post-wedding tasks
  • Ceremony
  • Reception
  • Rehearsal dinner
  • Brunch

While making your choices try to determine where you need the most help, or where the biggest chance for things to go wrong lays.

Full Service:

Most professional planning tips will recommend that you contact them as soon after you’re engaged as possible, and to pay attention to pricing models.

Your wedding is unique. It could be very simple and traditional or super modern and complicated. The wedding planner will do their best to estimate how many hours of their time will be needed to cater to your every need. The categories that you should discuss include:

  • Certified Wedding Planner and up to 2 Assistants
  • Budget management
  • Timelines and setting dates
  • Theme creation
  • Vendor referral and assistance on visits
  • Plans and advice on every part of your wedding day
  • Creative ideas to help personalize your day
  • Suggestions for centrepieces, wedding favors and bridal party gifts
  • Attendance and guidance at wedding rehearsal
  • Assist with creation of seating list and placement cards
  • Greeting at ceremony & reception, accompanying guests to seats
  • Personal touches and surprises
  • Overseeing traditions
  • Help with toasts, speeches, centrepiece games and kissing games
  • Retention, delivery and set up of décor at church and reception,
  • Supervision and full coordination at reception
  • Emergency kits with many products to take care of any problem that should arise

As you can see, full-service packages include assistance in virtually all aspects of your wedding checklist. If there is another aspect of your wedding that you want your planner to help with, go ahead and ask. For example, wedding planners would be familiar with the pros and cons of certain wedding gown choices and could prove to be an invaluable resource while you’re choosing your dress.


Regardless of the package you choose and the level of involvement you require, make sure to get everything in writing. It’s mutually beneficial for both you and your wedding planner to completely understand what is and what is not included, what’s optional, and when additional fees apply.
As with everything in life, shop around, check reviews, and have a few conversations before you make any commitments. Your wedding planner will be an important individual in your life for up to 12 months, it’s important that there’s a sense of rapport in this relationship.



How do wedding planners set prices? ›

You charge a percentage of the overall wedding budget. A common starting percentage rate is 10%. If you are just starting out and want to charge a percentage of the overall budget I would start at 10%. Percentage based pricing is most popular in the luxury wedding market.

How much of your budget should a wedding planner cost? ›

Experts suggest setting aside 5-10% of your wedding budget for a wedding planner. Doing so goes far beyond convenience — in the end, a wedding planner helps couples save money and time while providing peace of mind on their wedding day.

Are wedding planner prices negotiable? ›

In fact, you can definitely ask vendors—especially wedding planners—about their best wedding budgeting tips. Some vendors may even be willing to help you brainstorm ways to adjust your budget. However, we never recommend you ask them to devalue the cost of their services.

Do you tip wedding coordinator day? ›

Wedding Planner or Day of Coordinator

The Standard: Appreciated, yet if your planner or coordinator went above and beyond or assisted with tasks that were not expected, a tip of 15%-20% of the service cost would be appropriate.

How do event planners set prices? ›

Most event planners price their fees-for-service (the total cost to the client) using a "cost plus" method. They contract out the labor, supplies and materials involved in producing an event and charge their clients anywhere from 10 to 20 percent of the total cost of the event, with 15 percent being a rough average.

How do event planners structure their fees? ›

A Percentage (of Total Expenses) Based Fee

Generally applicable in smaller business or corporate events, the event planner organises the venue, food, and transportation in consultation with the client and charges a commission of 15%– 20 % on the event's total cost.

What costs the most when planning a wedding? ›

The most expensive parts of most weddings are costs associated with the reception venue, including the cost of renting materials, including tables and chairs, and serving food or alcohol.

What is a realistic budget for a wedding? ›

The average cost of a wedding in 2021 was $28,000 (including the ceremony and reception), according to The Knot's 2021 Real Weddings Study.

Why do wedding planners charge so much? ›

The work isn't done just because the wedding is over. A planner will likely have to return rental items, follow up with family members and vendors, and more, which is a significant part of a wedding planner's cost.

How do you avoid markup at a wedding? ›

There are legitimate ways to avoid the 'wedding markup. ' Couples can find legitimate – honest – ways to work with vendors outside the boundaries of the wedding industry, experts say. For example, couples can purchase bridesmaids dresses, accessories, suits, even an off-the-rack wedding dress at a department store.

Is a full wedding planner worth it? ›

When it comes to making the most of your budget, a wedding planner can actually help you save more on your bottom line. “The value of hiring an experienced event planner for your wedding or special event cannot be overemphasized,” explains Kourtney Perry, a wedding expert and founder of 7 Centerpieces.

How much should you tip your planner? ›

Coordinator / Planner: 10–15% of their fee, or up to $1,000. A thoughtful gift card or nice gift is also a suitable tip for your planner.

Do you tip the DJ at a wedding? ›

Tips are optional for ceremony or cocktail hour musicians, as well as bands and DJs, but they are suggested, says Norwood. "Anywhere from 15% to 20% on the final contract is a good amount for a single DJ," she says.

Is it rude not to tip wedding vendors? ›

And even though service charges may be spelled out in your contract, tipping—although not mandatory—is always appreciated for a job well done, not to mention a kind and thoughtful gesture. So don't forget to factor in tips when making your wedding budget.

What are 3 key factors to look into while planning an event in a low budget? ›

Some events have bigger budgets than others.
10 Tips for Event Planning with a Small Budget
  • Get organized with your venue early. ...
  • Location and transportation costs. ...
  • Food and beverage costs. ...
  • Go digital & cut down printing cost. ...
  • Be flexible, be creative. ...
  • Negotiate. ...
  • Collaborate. ...
  • Free tools.
Mar 30, 2016

What are the 4 major budget items for an event? ›

Event Budget Expenses
  • The Venue. The venue is usually the largest expense in any event budget. ...
  • Speakers or Entertainment. Depending on your needs, entertainment could be a big or small expense. ...
  • Staffing. ...
  • Signage and Branding. ...
  • Technology Expenses. ...
  • Promotional Expenses. ...
  • Emergency Fund. ...
  • Food Expenses.

How do you calculate cost per event? ›

It's primarily associated with the marketing costs surrounding an event, and is calculated by dividing the total expenses of an event by the total revenue directly generated from that event.

Why do event planners fail? ›

That is why they call us Event Planners! The number one reason that events fail is a lack of planning. There are so many different elements & people that make up an event. You need to ensure that each individual element is perfectly organised.

What is a good profit margin for event planning? ›

The average profit margin across all industries ranges from five to ten percent, depending on your event's nature. Even so, you want profit margins to be as high as possible because they show how efficiently you profited from this event.

What type of event planner makes the most money? ›

For example, some event planners focus on weddings while others prefer to work with corporate clients.
Here are a few examples of fields that tend to be more profitable than others:
  • Luxury wedding/event planning.
  • Destination wedding/event planning.
  • Wedding planning.
  • Virtual event planning.
  • Corporate event planning.
Apr 19, 2022

Is $30000 a lot for a wedding? ›

The average American wedding costs $30,000, according to The Knot, a popular wedding planning website. $30,000! That money could buy a nice new car or be a 20% down payment on a $150,000 home. It's also more than many Americans earn in a year.

What should not be included in a wedding budget? ›

For this reason, we typically don't suggest including items like wedding rings and some types of other jewelry, as well as shoes and even suits in your wedding budget. The reason behind this suggestion is because they're all items you will wear again and again after your celebration.

How much does a 200 person wedding cost? ›

In general, a 200 person wedding costs $60,000-$80,000 or around double the cost of an average wedding. This range may be higher or lower depending on where you get married and the type of event you have. According to The Knot $33,931 is the average cost for a wedding these days.

What is the most expensive part of wedding? ›

Typically, the most expensive aspects of a wedding are the ceremony and reception venue. This depends on whether the venue comes with food and servers or not, and of course, the location of the venues. Many brides will pay tens of thousands of dollars for the venues.

Can you write off wedding expenses on taxes? ›

Weddings are expensive, so it's unfortunate that they aren't tax-deductible! But wait, though tax write-offs may not be top-of-mind when you are planning your wedding, with careful planning, there are some ways you may be able to garner a tax deduction as you prepare to head down the aisle.

Who pays for a wedding in 2022? ›

The most common way couples are paying for their wedding in 2022 (41%) is by sharing the costs with their parents and/or in-laws, according to Zola. But 37% of couples reported that they're planning to pay for everything related to their wedding on their own.

How many couples break up during wedding planning? ›

According to their findings, a whopping 20 percent of all engagements are called off before the wedding.

Is 10000 a reasonable wedding budget? ›

The good news is that you can absolutely have a spectacular wedding on a budget that will cut the average cost of a wedding by more than half! Weddings under 10k are absolutely doable with allocating expenses thoughtfully, using your creativity, and discovering money saving tips.

How many declines should you expect for a wedding? ›

There's no magical formula to determine exactly how many invitees will RSVP "no" (trust us, if we could predict the future for you, we would), but it's safe to plan for roughly 15 percent of people to decline the invitation (and more like 20–30 percent for a destination wedding).

Where do wedding planners make the most money? ›

Highest paying cities for Wedding Planners near United States
  • Houston, TX. $25.44 per hour. 6 salaries reported.
  • Denver, CO. $23.48 per hour. 13 salaries reported.
  • Minneapolis, MN. $21.86 per hour. 17 salaries reported.
  • Los Angeles, CA. $20.75 per hour. 10 salaries reported.
  • Temecula, CA. $20.47 per hour. ...
  • Show more nearby cities.

Who pays for what when planning a wedding? ›

Traditionally, the bride and her family are responsible for paying for all wedding planning expenses, the bride's attire, all floral arrangements, transportation on the wedding day, photo and video fees, travel and lodgings for the officiant if he comes from out of town, lodging for the bridesmaids (if you have offered ...

Do you pay wedding planners upfront? ›

Final payment for quoted services – Most vendors require full payment for the quoted services 10-14 days before the wedding. By this time, you should know the final number of guests, which services your client needs, venue logistics, and approximately how many hours you'll work.

Do you tip wedding vendors 20%? ›

If your contract doesn't include gratuity, you should tip 15 to 20 percent of the total bill. Another way to tip is offering $50 to $100 for each chef and $20 to $50 per server. Wedding planner: Wedding planners won't expect a tip, so this is optional based on service.

What should you not give at a wedding? ›

Unless the couple has specifically told you otherwise, you'll want to avoid these 18 bad wedding gifts.
  • Off-registry linens. Credit: Stone & Beam. ...
  • Regifted items. ...
  • A half-gift… ...
  • Or an item for half the couple. ...
  • Artwork and other home decor. ...
  • Any kind of baby-related items. ...
  • Gag gifts. ...
  • Self-help or relationship books.
Mar 17, 2021

What should you avoid the week of your wedding? ›

Foods to Avoid As You Near Your Wedding Day
  • Sugar. You saw this one coming. ...
  • Alcohol and Carbonated Beverages. ...
  • Spicy Foods. ...
  • Cruciferous Veggies. ...
  • Fried and Processed Foods. ...
  • Coffee and Other Sources of Caffeine. ...
  • Granola. ...
  • Foods High in Salt.
Dec 2, 2019

What is the hardest part of planning a wedding? ›

The first step is one of the most difficult: hashing out your budget. You'll need to know who's paying for what and if you're getting a little financial boost from your mom and dad. Keeping track of all your wedding's financial details can also be pretty tricky, especially if you aren't exactly a gifted mathematician.

What is the difference between an event planner and a wedding planner? ›

Event planners, however, are taught the general process of a consultation meeting and then learn to tailor those ideas to different types of events. Wedding planners, on the other hand, are taught how to conduct a consultation meeting with wedding clients specifically.

What is the difference between a wedding planner and a wedding coordinator? ›

A wedding planner is more of a decision maker than a wedding coordinator will be. They can help you to create a theme or feel for the day, design decor, set and manage your budget, book vendors, and help to actually plan the wedding. A coordinator is there to make sure the plans you made are carried out properly.

Do you tip the venue coordinator? ›

Wedding Venue Coordinator/Catering Captain

Amount: Wedding venue coordinators and catering captains should be tipped $250-500, or 15-20% of the food and drink bill. Timing: If included in the contract, the final bill is due before the wedding. If not, at the end of the reception.

Do you tip the photographer at a wedding? ›

If you're happy with the photographer's work, etiquette experts say a 15-20% gratuity is generally appropriate. Regardless of the amount you decide to tip, it is always appreciated and above your responsibilities as a wedding client to tip your wedding photographer.

Do you tip a wedding painter? ›

We suggest generously tipping anyone who falls into one of the more specialized categories below: Cake or specialty dessert vendor. Photo booth operators. Live wedding painters.

Do you tip at an open bar wedding? ›

Whether your guests tip the bartender or not, it is your responsibility as host to tip them for their time. Most event planners agree that $100 per bartender at the wedding is an appropriate tip amount, so remember to have some cash on hand (and factor the cost into your budget).

Do you tip the cake maker for a wedding? ›

"Couples do not have tip their wedding cake baker, though they can tip the delivery team who sets up the wedding cake display at the reception," Chertoff said. "$10 to $25 is typically acceptable, $50 if the display is over the top and takes a long time to arrange."

Do you tip wedding venue owner? ›

This extra fee can be applied to anything from venue maintenance to administrative costs, so unless you see the word "gratuity" spelled out on your final bill, you may still need to tip. 3. You're not required to tip business owners. Technically you don't need to tip the owner of a business—just their employees.

How much do you tip wedding vendors 2022? ›

Gratuity is typically included in the catering contract, but if not, expect to pay 15 to 20 percent of the total food and beverage bill by or before the end of the reception. Alternatively, you can portion tips out as follows: $200-400 each for the head server and banquet manager. $100 for the head chef.

Do you tip DJ if he owns company? ›

Owners are not tipped. Self-employed vendors or business owners are typically not given gratuity. Bands or DJs not booked through an entertainment agency are also not tipped.

How do you calculate wedding cost? ›

The Ultimate Wedding Budget Checklist
  1. Wedding Ceremony - 2%
  2. Wedding Rings - 2%
  3. Venue Hire - 15%
  4. Catering (Food and Drink) - 25%
  5. Photography/ Videography - 12%
  6. Outfits and Beauty - 12%
  7. Wedding Cake - 2%
  8. Wedding Planner - 3% - 15% Depending On The Level Of Service You Choose.
Jun 10, 2021

How do you calculate cost per person for a wedding? ›

Wedding Cost Per Person Formula

To calculate a wedding cost per person, divide the total cost by the number of guests.

What is a realistic price for a wedding? ›

The average cost of a wedding in 2021 was $28,000 (including the ceremony and reception), according to The Knot's 2021 Real Weddings Study.

How should the wedding expenses divided? ›

Budget Breakdown
  1. Venue and Catering: 40 percent of your budget.
  2. Photography and Videography: 15 percent of your budget.
  3. Wedding Attire and Beauty: 5 percent of your budget.
  4. Music/Entertainment: 10 percent of your budget.
  5. Flowers: 10 percent of your budget.
  6. Favors and Gifts: 2 percent of your budget.
Dec 14, 2021


1. Your Ultimate Wedding Planning Checklist - Wedding Tips and Guide #Part 1
2. Wedding Planner Pricing Workbook
(Engaged Wedding Planner Academy)
3. How To Price Your Event Planning Service Packages
(May Silvers)
4. Pricing For New Wedding Planners
(How To Become A Wedding Planner | Plan A Wedding)
5. 3 Templates to Help you BOOK More Wedding Clients - How to Become a Wedding Planner
(Event Certificate)
6. Top 5 Tips You Need To Know | Wedding Coordinator Checklist Day Of | Wedding Coordinator Guide
(How To Become A Wedding Planner | Plan A Wedding)
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