Figuring out how to charge your clients is perhaps the most frustrating aspect of owning your own company and I receive more inquiries about pricing wedding planner services than any other from new wedding planners.
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Wedding Planner Pricing Options
There are several different ways of pricing your wedding planning services including:
Your wedding planner fee as a PERCENTAGE
- Based on % of client’s wedding budget
- 25% is benchmark/starting point
- May have to negotiate fee with clients
- Popular method for celebrity planners, not so much for brand new wedding planners
- Your fee increases with the budget
And, just because you observe another professional wedding planner doing things a certain way — like charging by percentage — doesn’t necessarily mean that that formula will work well for you as a wedding planner. Charging by percentage usually works if you’re a wedding professional that your clients have heard of before. Take the time to develop your portfolio, vendor relationships, and, ultimately your professional reputation so that potential clients are more comfortable with this method of pricing.
But, what if your client’s wedding comes in under budget? Should your wedding planner fee decrease too? Something to think about, right?…
Your wedding planner fee as a PACKAGE or PROJECT
- A set or minimum fee for an entire project or package
- Clients prefer this method of pricing
- Price ranges from $1,500 and up
- Fees determined by simplicity or intricacy of wedding
- Rate based on your experience & qualifications
The good thing about a package is that once it’s created, you’re done with figuring out your pricing. But don’t go overboard with the number of packages that you offer.
Your wedding planner fee as an HOURLY RATE
- Each task you perform is tied into a cost
- $25/hour (minimum!)
- Clients get a very clear picture of what it takes to plan a wedding
Just know that the hourly rate you receive as an employee is NOT the same as the hourly rate you charge when you’re a business owner.
Your wedding planner fee as a COMMISSION
- You add a “finder’s fee” or “handling fee” to all the services provided at the wedding
- You handle all the billing
Pricing your wedding planner services as a commission requires that you have great relationships with a group of handpicked wedding vendors. If you can pull this off, you’ll have more control of your client’s wedding not to mention several streams of income for each wedding that you plan.
Which Pricing Option Should you Pick?
Deciding which wedding planner pricing option to go with depends on the types of weddings you are planning. Wedding budgets and the amount of time it takes you to complete specific wedding tasks both play a big part in your decision.
By the way, you don’t have to stick with one overall pricing option. If the weddings that you’re planning are varied, adjust your wedding planner pricing accordingly.
I am a Wedding Planner and I also design and complete the decorations for weddings. I am not sure how to price out the planning of a wedding with or without the decorations. Every time I do a wedding I think I cheat myself. If I am doing both of these duties should there be 2 separate contracts? Should I use sub company name for my decorating? How do I quote it out to where I dont cheat myself? What is the best method of charging for decorations? Is it per table, per hour, per decorations, per staff etc.? Please help me…..
Thanks in advance,
I am a wedding concierge do you think the pricing should be the same as a planner?
That depends on what it is that you do as a wedding concierge. Is what you do very different from what a ‘traditional’ wedding planner does?
Thanks Ms. Debbie. This really helped me out. I’m a custom designer for weddings now I’m planning only. Struggled to come up wit fees. Now I’m just going to go on the clients budget percentage.
I feel your struggle with fees! I’m glad this was able to help you figure things out. 🙂