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South Asian Weddings

Negotiating

Raangoli mentioned negotiating with the venue.  Seriously I have no clue how to negotiate.  Probably the first desi, who does not know it.  But I seriously don't think about it, you tell me this is the cost per person, what is included, and what is not, either I can afford it, or not, or I want more than what they are providing so I would move on.   Can I get some tips as to where and what  I can negotiate with the venue?


Re: Negotiating

  • edited December 2011
    We got all the basic information when we first went in. What their base prices were. After that we went on to since we have this many people coming what can you do? If we were given $36 for food per person then ask can you do it for $32? Yes $32 is low but you wait for a counter offer. Then go from there. If you want rooms say... can I get x amount of rooms for parents or us? Either way make sure EVERYTHING is in the contract. Doesn't count unless it's in the contract.
  • temurlangtemurlang member
    1000 Comments Third Anniversary Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    Don't be afraid to ask for discounts or other things.

    For example, you can ask "how can I bring down the food cost per person?"  "Is there a bulk discount on rooms/parking/etc?"

    DFW makes a good point... most venues charge for the following:  space, food, cake cutting, alcohol, soda, corkage, overtime, linens, staff.  Make sure the cost they tell you includes all those things.  Or if it doesn't, find out how much in addition those things are.  Hidden costs are the ones that really add up.  Also, the coordinator at our venue was very helpful with suggesting how to keep costs down.  I would ask her "what are my options with XYZ?" and she would let me know what would cost least.
  • edited December 2011

    Ditto. I emailed the venue I was interested in and said that I would love to have my wedding there but the current price is out of my budget. I then asked what discounts they can offer. They immediately took $10 off per person, which adds up). I then mentioned that a lot of other venues offer upgraded linens and a free guest room (in addition to the bridal suite) and they added those on.

    Doesn't hurt to bargain. Almost everyone's price is negotiable. You just have to know when to stop asking and be happy with what they are offering. Interestingly, the only vendors who wouldn't bargain with me were my desi vendors--decorator, makeup artist. Our photographer wouldn't lower the price but threw in some enlergements.

  • HinajHinaj member
    1000 Comments
    edited December 2011
    Thanks guys! Good tips!
  • bridetobeeebridetobeee member
    10 Comments
    edited December 2011
    The wedding industry is a chance to finally bargain the way you do in India. I usually said a particular price is out of my budget and I gave them a figure a lot less than what I was truly willing to pay. And, the moment you say that, they will try to accomodate you. Also, saying you are having an indian wedding can be a huge benefit because venues expect 300 people or more so they know they can make much more money from you versus an American wedding for 120 or less.

    Also, if there is anything unique to your wedding or venue, you can push that with the vendors. And, if they can't lower cost, ask if they can throw something in for you. My photographer gave me additional edited pictures and high-res images. The DJ helped me out by dropping the price of the dhol player a little. The venue said cleanup would be included and closed the park 2 hours earlier. Things like that go a long way.

    Also, make sure to find out hidden costs because there are quite a few of them. Trust me, it shocked me in the beginning. Make sure to ask the per person cost INCLUDING tax and service charge. In NY, the tax is 8.75% and the service charge most venues quoted me was 18-20% which really adds up! So, $60pp quickly goes up to $76pp. There is also a cake cutting fee, sometimes per slice or per person. Sometimes venues charge for set-up time (vendors setting up for event) and this can add up because it takes time to put the mandap, lighting, etc. Some ceremony fees can be super pricey!

    Good luck! Just ask, the worse they can say is no, and then, you can always say yes to their price. At the end of day, they will not turn away business
  • edited December 2011
    The PPs gave a lot of great advice, so I won't repeat it.

    One thing to remember or try is to get more for your money if they won't budge on price. Maybe they can throw in an extra dessert or maybe the chair covers. Or another appetizer during the cocktail hour.

    Don't be afraid to pit one venue against another. Say "XYZ is giving me this, this and this. But you're only giving me this and this. I prefer your venue much more, is there anything you can do for me?"

    Hotels/venues don't want to lose out on a party so they will do what it takes, within reason, to get you to come to them.
    ExerciseMilestone
  • edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/cultural-wedding-boards_south-asian-weddings_negotiating?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Cultural Wedding BoardsForum:430Discussion:6cc87df4-fce2-45bf-8e87-104baca5d4d4Post:680d66c6-c39c-4a29-8647-786f46e8fd5f">Re: Negotiating</a>:
    [QUOTE]Don't be afraid to pit one venue against another. Say "XYZ is giving me this, this and this. But you're only giving me this and this. I prefer your venue much more, is there anything you can do for me?" Hotels/venues don't want to lose out on a party so they will do what it takes, within reason, to get you to come to them.
    Posted by raangoli[/QUOTE]
    <strong><font color="#000080">This is more or less what FI did. He says he hates negotiating, but he does a pretty good job. Pretty much every vendor we wanted, FI talked down the price... although the InterContinental didn't budge too much (but even a little does add up when you multiple it by the number of each guest).

    Also, if you have the financial means, cash talks and having the ability to pay the whole cost up front is a good tool.</font></strong>
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