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Before you say yes, ask the right questions.

Now that April is here (seriously, what happened to March?) the wedding planning season is officially ON. We know many of you are getting down to details for your summer weddings, while many more of you are busy trying to nail down venues and vendors for next year. We, of course, have some advice.


First of all, if vendor-shopping is making you crazy, call us. We can make all that crazy go away by hiring qualified, dependable and available vendors for every step of your big day. It’s one of the many things we can do to make your life easier. And making your life easier is pretty much the point of Simply Devine.


Second, if you want to choose your own vendors, not a problem. There are a lot of really great people out there. But please don’t hire a single one of them without asking the right questions—and really listen to the answers. For example, words like “we work informally” could be code for “we may or may not show up.” And if anyone has you sign something with teeny, tiny fine print at the bottom, do yourself a favor and read it. You’d be amazed at the things hidden in some contracts.


To further help you on your vendor quest, we have compiled a list of VIQs (very important questions). Ask them before you sign any dotted lines or pay a single dime.


  1. Have you done this before?

Ask for samples, references and a few details about their experience.


  1. What is your payment structure, cancellation and delivery policy?

Don’t be caught by surprise. And be very wary of anyone who wants full payment before services have been rendered.


  1. Do you have liability insurance?

Because who IS responsible if the ring bearer knocks over the camera tripod?


  1. What is your backup plan?

If your vendor is sick or hurt or has an emergency, what happens?


  1. Will I actually get you or someone else? Who?

Nothing is worse than thinking you are getting the area’s best DJ and then a college kid with a serious cell phone addiction shows up instead.


  1. What time will you arrive and how long will you stay?

Again, assume nothing.


  1. Do you have all the equipment we will need?

Talk about specifics—if you want a spotlight dance, does your DJ have a spotlight?


  1. Will I be your only job on my wedding day?

If not, how will this work? You don’t want to be the wedding that gets lost in the shuffle.


  1. Have you ever worked in my venue or location?

A yes to this answer is a definite bonus.


  1. The big question to ask all photographers: When can I see my photos and when can I have them?

Too many brides are bummed to find that the waiting time for photography can be months after the wedding. Know what you’re getting and when.


Just a little advance homework is all it takes to safeguard your wedding from potential disasters. We’ve seen some real doozies in our day, and there is nothing worse than being swindled at your wedding. Our final rule about hiring reliable vendors: if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Of course, there are exceptions to this rule—just look at the amazing person you’re about to marry!


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