• Images
  • Text
  • Find a Couple + Registry
GO
Wedding Recap and Withdrawal

Day of coordinator--small wedding?

As I've started planning, I've discovered that some things I had previously thought were unnecessary splurges are seeming like they might be worth it. I'm considering hiring a day of coordinator, but I wanted some advice from other whether it's really necessary or just nice-to-have. Here's what I'm working with: I'm planning a small wedding under 100 people maybe as small as 70 or so. The ceremony is at a church that will have a staff member there to do basic coordination, help with the rehearsal, etc. The reception is at a club that does the setup and tear down and in-house catering. They also have a special events coordinator who will be there most of the time just to oversee things. I'm hiring a DJ who will move things along during the reception. So I will have several informal "coordinators" for different parts of the day, and my initial thought was that that would be enough. The wedding won't be super elaborate. No DIY stuff, we're just having flowers on the tables and using the clubs in-house linens, tables, chairs, etc. On the other hand, I'm planning it myself. All of my family is out of state and I want my parents and others to be able to sit back and enjoy everything. Thoughts? Is a coordinator excessive or necessary?

Re: Day of coordinator--small wedding?

  • My coordinator is included with the cost of the venue, and I'm very grateful. She is going to help get everything set up and decorated. She will be behind the scenes during the ceremony telling the bridal party when to walk and where to stand, in case some people forget or aren't aware for whatever reason. My coordinator said she will help when it comes to cutting the cake and boxing the top tier to take home. These are just a few things, but I have a certain sense of security knowing that I have someone who knows what she is doing there to help me in case I forget or don't know something. It's really a judgement call for you. If I were you, I'd call up some coordinators and ask what duties they assist with so I could determine if I needed help with those things.
  • JoanE2012JoanE2012 Exit 21 (Jersey!) member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    We didn't have a DOC.  Our venue had a coordinator who helped with most everything......putting out the favors and escort cards, making sure our stuff (like cake cutter, toasting flutes) was put into a box for us to take at the end of the night.  Like you mentioned, the DJ did most of the work keeping the evening going.....intros, first dances, cake cutting, etc. 

    It sounds like you are having a similar wedding to what we had.  And it sounds like you have a coordinator at the venue to help with the essential stuff.  Personally, I'd skip it. 

    I'm so glad we didn't hire a DOC.  It would've been a waste of money.  That money went to our honeymoon instead.  :D


  • I hired a DOC for my small (~45 guest) wedding.  At the time I got engaged, I had never been to a wedding as an adult, so I had no idea where to start.  I knew I wanted a venue that would let me bring in all of my own vendors rather than someplace all-inclusive, so a DOC was a huge help suggesting and coordinating vendors.  She also got me some great deals.  She was also a great sounding board for ideas.  In your situation, I'm not sure you need one since you already have several people who will be doing some coordination. 
  • I didn't & I had 115 guests. Like you the church handled things for me at their end, plus the rehersal helped. For the reception I used their baker and my DJ had worked with the venue several times and was familiar with their set up & their on site coordinator. Everything flowed perfectly. I had my travel schedule to the limo company the week prior so the driver would know exactley where to go & when. Florist showed up & took car of handing out flowers & pinning all the men. Everything went smoothly at the reception. The DJ also gave to me 1-2 weeks prior to the wedding his time frame/itenary of events so I could confirm that I got everything I wanted in the time frame alloted. I'm not talking about full song list I'm talking about cocktail hour, intros, first dance, dinner, cake cutting, etc. My family got to relax and be guests at our wedding which like you, was important to me.
  • I had 55 guests at the wedding and had a full service coordinator so that included DOC.  We had her DOC service list as well which is really more a week of coordination.  For that service, you give her copies of contracts as vendors are booked, and she takes care of all the final details on the scheduling and who needs to be where and when.  She fielded all the last minute vendor calls so I was free to relax during the week prior and on the wedding day.  She made the timeline and we ran on time thanks to her planning.

    You will need to have a guest (outside of anyone provided by the venue) to serve as a contact point to make sure that deliveries arrive on time and vendors aren't lost or stuck in traffic.  Our ceremony musician apparently went to the wrong building but we never knew about it as he was in the right place and ready when our ceremony was scheduled to start.  You have to have a contact person on the day of the wedding other than yourself, and unless you want to have a guest or wedding party member stressing rather than enjoying the day, I'd hire a DOC.
  • I had 55 guests at the wedding and had a full service coordinator so that included DOC.  We had her DOC service list as well which is really more a week of coordination.  For that service, you give her copies of contracts as vendors are booked, and she takes care of all the final details on the scheduling and who needs to be where and when.  She fielded all the last minute vendor calls so I was free to relax during the week prior and on the wedding day.  She made the timeline and we ran on time thanks to her planning.

    You will need to have a guest (outside of anyone provided by the venue) to serve as a contact point to make sure that deliveries arrive on time and vendors aren't lost or stuck in traffic.  Our ceremony musician apparently went to the wrong building but we never knew about it as he was in the right place and ready when our ceremony was scheduled to start.  You have to have a contact person on the day of the wedding other than yourself, and unless you want to have a guest or wedding party member stressing rather than enjoying the day, I'd hire a DOC.
    We have hired a DOC and she has been fantastic. While our venue comes with a facilitator for both the ceremony and reception times, they don't do much other than supervise (but that is just ours, I know every venue is different.

    I just wanted to address the section I marked in bold, you should never ask a guest to do any work for your wedding, then they are no longer a guest but working.  If the staff members who are already in place do not keep track of those things, then yes, you need to hire someone to do that. 
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • JennyColadaJennyColada Awesometown, CA member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary First Answer
    I wouldn't consider a 70 person wedding to be small by any means.

    I'm having an intimate (8 guest) wedding, and if the venue offer a DOC then I'd happily take it. My theory is this: I just want to show up and have a good time. The end.
This discussion has been closed.
Choose Another Board
Search Boards