In the wedding industry, there are a number of roles that sounds similar and have overlapping tasks which can be confusing for new brides. What is the difference between a catering manager, a wedding planner, a wedding designer, and a venue coordinator? Let me help to decipher a little more about these roles, to help you find which consultant is best for you!
Today, we are going to focus on the following roles:
A Catering Manager
A Venue Coordinator
A Wedding Designer
A Wedding Planner
In short, here are simplified definitions of these positions (though the individuals who do these roles, who love their jobs, go above and beyond these definitions).
A Catering Manager is your go to person with a catering company who will help finalize your menu, arrange your bar, staffing and coordination of your timeline at the reception.
A Venue Coordinator similar to a catering manager, they are a representative of a venue site who will coordinate the arrival of your vendors, and timeline during your time at the venue.
A Wedding Designer is a design consultant who will help you achieve your wedding vision, design and motifs.
A Wedding Planner is a mix of all of the above managing your questions, timelines, menu, wedding details, vendors, and special touches that you would want to have at your wedding.
So why spend your budget booking a wedding planner when many caterers and venues include a coordinator?
The largest difference between these options is the level of hands-on attention you receive. A wedding planner is with you throughout your planning process and has a more personal relationship with you, your fiancé and family. This role is focused around your needs & wants as well as your timeline, your menu, your designs and your vendors.
A venue coordinator is a representative who is tied to your venue and is with you solely at your disposal for venue only items— floorpans, catering if that is included with the venue, and reception timelines. They are really great at giving advice for what work best at their space/venue.
Catering companies who have catering managers their main focus is making sure your menu is perfect and that your food service is what you are hoping for. They also manage the staff, execution of service and in many cases can order and provide decor items such as linens, tables, and decor. Catering companies, offer this service for clients, because many brides opt to not have help on their wedding day.
In contrast, a wedding designer is going to bring you mostly into the designs of the wedding day and work with you on design budgets, rather than manage your timelines, vendors and menu. If what you need for your wedding is help making the "Wow!" factor and an over the top beautiful design-- this is the resource you should investigate.
Overall, every bride is looking for something a little different, but a planner- be it a catering manager, wedding designer or venue coordinator-- can help make your wedding day (or weekend) absolutely perfect!