How to Negotiate & Get the Best Deals with Wedding Vendors

Remember to be polite when talking with your wedding vendors – quite often an overbearing or demanding person actually gets less than they want from a negotiation.  When you are a pleasant and courteous person during negotiations you imply that you will be a customer that will be easy to work with.  Vendors know that a difficult client will cost them added time in handling complaints or disagreements and most often these customers will be making last-minute changes.

A wedding vendor will be thinking that a disagreeable customer is less likely to provide complimentary word-of-mouth for their wedding services or retail shop.  An experienced vendor understands the value of  their time and goodwill which will equate to savings during your wedding negotiations.

How did you hear about the vendor – from a friend or family member?  Perhaps you were impressed by their product or service at a recent wedding that you attended. Did they offer wedding designs that were unique or custom? When you share your thoughts about what you have experienced at other events a reputable vendor will take pride in his or her work and letting them know your feelings can help with wedding negotiations. 

Don’t hold back from sharing your honest compliments and excitement about their work. When you express interest in working with a particular vendor you will benefit by your sincere interest in working with them. Every vendor will perceive flattery as very positive and will want to be more accommodating to you in the negotions for your wedding.

In the wedding planning stages, focus on the “we” in wedding. You will want to see your wedding vendors as your teammates and coaches who will lead you to a successful event.  The wedding vendors have the ability to calm your fears and guide you to the best solutions.  You are both working together towards the same goals:  a beautiful wedding with a calm and de-stressed, happy bride.  Your wedding negotiations can become a pleasant experience for everyone involved!

When working with your wedding plans and your vendors try to remove your emotions as much as possible. Remember you want to think your plans through with a clear head and use the logic side of your brain more often than the emotion side of your brain. You will definitely be glad that you made clear and logical decisions when the wedding day is long past.

When negotiating prices and products try to think: “What would my wedding planner do?”  A professional wedding planner would sit down with you, get as much input on what you wanted for your wedding as possible and then negotiate for you with your vendors to get you the best deals.  During negotiations no one has to know you are the bride – you just let them know that you are the person handling the arrangements.

When you make an appointment with a vendor to go over their services, be respectful of their time and keep your schedule. If you find that you are running late, be sure to call the vendor and ask if they will be able to adjust their schedule that day to meet with you.   Always offer to reschedule the wedding negotiations if you can’t make a scheduled appointment.

Be aware of the time during your appointment, too. If negotiations are running long and it’s getting close to closing time, offer to come back again to complete your negotiations. Often they will insist that you stay and finish, but you want to be polite and respectful of their time. When you are considerate and you acknowledge that they may have other obligations you will make yourself a customer worthy of receiving a discount during wedding negotiations.

If you are discussing prices for services on a Saturday afternoon during the height of wedding season then you will have less negotiating room than if you are planning a wedding in the off-season. Keep an open mind about setting the dates and times for delivery of the vendors products or services – be open for suggestions and you may experience unconsidered alternatives during your wedding negotiations that can be quite profitable.

Be flexible – not everything needs to be negotiable. However, you can save your budgeted funds in the adjustable areas.  Most wedding vendors know the tricks of their trade, and being flexible gives them room to use their knowledge and experience to accommodate your needs whenever you and your fiance meet for your own wedding negotiations.