1. Are You Insured?
Things happen, from kitchen fires to a dropped cake. If something goes wrong on your wedding day, excellent insurance can help you avoid unforeseen expenses. At a minimum, you will want to get your money back if a vendor’s error or accident destroys an important feature of your wedding. At worst, you could be on the hook if an uninsured vendor causes property damage to your venue. If you are not comfortable with your vendors’ insurance policies, consider taking out separate wedding insurance.
2. Can I Make Changes or Cancel?
It is always best to finalize your decisions before signing a contract, but life has a way of throwing curve balls at the most inopportune moments. Whether you want to switch from a buffet for 20 to a plated meal for 40, or the wedding is postponed or even cancelled, you need to know exactly how much you will need to pay. Get all promises in writing rather than relying on what a company representative says.
3. What Is Your Schedule?
A venue rental typically includes a certain amount of time before the wedding to set up, and a certain amount of time afterwards to break everything down. Make sure that your vendor’s projected timeline works with your rental schedule. Also consider your personal wedding day timeline. Build in a buffer in case the caterer shows up an hour late or the cake delivery driver gets lost.
4. What About Emergencies?
Most contracts have some form of an “Act of God” clause that holds the vendor harmless if your product or service is delayed or damaged due to unavoidable circumstances. However, some vendors are willing to do everything humanly possible to help save the wedding even under difficult conditions, while others are eager to walk away at the first sign of trouble. Ask prospective vendors to describe a time when things went terribly wrong at a wedding, and how the situation was resolved. From refunds to rewritten contracts, a good vendor will have an arsenal of customer recovery options.
5. What Isn’t Included?
Ideally, your vendor contract will include absolutely every penny that you are expected to pay, along with clearly written contingency plans. In reality, many contracts are not nearly that well written. Feeding the vendor, reimbursing parking charges, and paying unexpected overage fees (for both time and supply overruns) are just a few of the extras that many bridal couples report. Make sure you clearly understand what is expected of you, and how extras that occur on the day of the wedding are priced.
Finding the perfect vendors for your wedding can be a real challenge, and it is tempting to sign a contract with the first company that seems to meet your needs. Before making a commitment, however, it is important to consider the practicalities. The best vendors are not only good at exceeding your expectations when things run perfectly, but are able and willing to professionally handle the unexpected without busting your budget. It is reasonable to charge for extras and changes, but those charges should be anticipated and clearly spelled out rather than sprung on you on the day of your wedding. Ask detailed questions, listen closely to the answers, and get all promises in writing.
At Betta Party Hire, we are here to help. If you desire personalised assistance, please phone us on 1300 472 793. Our dedicated wedding team (Jan and Damian) will be delighted to share our knowledge and recommendations for trusted professionals who can help you ensure that each aspect of your special day is perfect.