As a wedding planner, it’s my job (my super awesome job that I love) to be aware of the common regrets of our time, and make you aware of them.
I don’t necessarily believe in “regrets”, but weddings are often once-in-a-lifetime events. The more we can learn from what others have learned – why not hear what they have to say!
Of course, we all can’t have all the things – #budget – but it’s my duty (and my honor) to walk you through each detail to make sure your wedding is exactly how YOU want it to be.
Some of these common wedding planning regrets came from my experience but a lot of them came from talking to a whole SLEW of now-married couples and individuals.
If listening to podcasts is more your thing, check out Episode 80: Hindsight is 20/20 of the Put A Ring On It podcast.
#1: Underestimating How Quickly the Day Will Fly By
Everyone says the wedding day goes by so fast, but does it really?
Let me tell you why.
Think of any other, regular 24-hour day.
Now add in a slew of appointments, being busy, a whole herd of your favorite people together, and excitement for absolutely everything from start to finish — Plus a big ol’ smooch that will change your life forever (no pressure).
And THAT is what your wedding day will be like.
You also have the actual wedding planning process. You know that amazing anticipation of going on a trip? And then you’re finally ON vacation and suddenly it’s the last day.
Your wedding is only 24 hours, MAYBE the weekend.
And I promise you it’s going to be one of the fastest weekends of your life.
Before you know it, it’s over and you’re on a plane to a destination you’ve been dreaming of (hopefully).
That is where it’s so helpful to have a Wedding Planner take over all of the details. When everything is in its place and you don’t have to think about it, you can focus on every single moment in the moment.
Speaking of TIME…
#2: Not Giving Yourselves Enough Time Between the Wedding and the Honeymoon
Your wedding will likely be one of the most fun, exhausting days of your life. Between the planning, the partying (even if you’re not drinking), the emotions — it all takes a TOLL on you physically AND mentally (in the best way of course).
YES – It’s going to be amazing.
YES – It’s going to be the time of your life.
BUT – Fun is exhausting.
Give yourself AT LEAST a day or two to recover, sleep, and pack for your Honeymoon. These days, it’s not uncommon to wait a few weeks or even months before taking a honeymoon.
In our daily lives it’s go, go, go, but use this special day to slow down a little. Don’t rush off to the next thing.
Soak it up. Take your time. You won’t regret it.
#3: Losing Yourselves And Making Decisions Based on Other People
Do you know what weddings are never short of? OPINIONS. You will have a LOT of opinions to field throughout the planning process (family members, wedding party, vendors, etc.).
Everyone will want to share what they did, what you should do, what you shouldn’t do.
It’s easy to lose track of what YOU want for the day while trying to please everyone else. You can only make so many people happy. And the only thing that TRULY matters is that you and your partner are happy.
Don’t make a decision because you feel pressured to. If it doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.
This is also a perk of having a planner on your team because they can be a good voice of reason for you.
#4: Feeling The Need To Do ALL The Things
Why do we do that? Why do we feel the need to do everything, when really we don’t want everything? We just want the right things.
This pressure often comes from spending too much time on Pinterest (yes, it can happen).
But here are your new rules of thumb:
- If a detail or thing matters to you, go for it!
- If it only matters to you because you think it’s supposed to, it probably won’t matter after it’s all said and done.
- As long as you aren’t compromising on the foundations of your guest experience, it’s probably fine to skip it.
Still unsure what to keep and what to let go of? Here are some other good resources to look into:
#5: Trying To Do it ALL Yourself
The ugly stepsister to feeling like you need to do all the things is feeling like you have to do them all yourself.
But let’s get real here. A wedding is not for one person, therefore it should not be planned by one person.
PRO Tip: Don’t be afraid to delegate.
Listen, I know you are capable of being superhuman, but that doesn’t mean you have to be. Don’t even try. You’ll only add stress to your plate and you’ll end up frustrated and exhausted in the long run.
Nobody needs that negativity in their life.
Also, just because you (or someone you know) has a particular skill or talent, doesn’t mean you should use your wedding day as a time to “try it out”.
This segues to the next regret.
#6: Having a Friend or Family Member Fill The Role of a “Professional” Service Provider
Hmmm… what do you mean?
There is nothing wrong with trying to save a few extra dollars, but having a friend video your wedding, having your Maid of Honor do your flowers, or having your Mom be your coordinator… may not be the best idea.
This is an area where I’ve seen relationships ruined over. Not because they won’t do a good job, but because expectations are very high on your wedding day.
It often ends in frustration, added stress, worry, and extra time/money spent… and no one wants to touch those things with a 10 foot pole. Especially on their wedding day when emotions are already running really high!
People have the best intentions and only want to help, but to save everyone some grief, it’s always better to hire a professional so your friends and family can enjoy the day alongside you.
#7: Not Taking “First Look” Photos
If you’ve done your research and you’re strongly against taking First Look photos, you have my permission to skip this.
But if you’re on the fence, here’s what you need to know before making a decision.
Let’s start with WHY.
Why would a couple choose to take First Look photos?
There are three BIG reasons couples enjoy taking First Look photos (especially if there is little to no gap of time between the ceremony and cocktail hour):
- They are able to attend more of their Cocktail Hour.
- They are able to spend more time with their guests.
- They are able to spend more of the day together with one another.
Are you convinced yet? Keep reading.
Think of throwing a party and then spending one hour of that party away from everyone (as they enjoy themselves) taking photos. Sounds like you’d be missing the party and you’re the guest of honor!
It all boils down to the fact that couples just want to spend as much time as possible with everyone (which further proves how quickly the day goes by).
If you want to learn more about First Looks, give this episode a listen. By the end of it, you should know exactly what’s best for you!
#8: Not Hiring a Better Photographer
Before you think I’m over here just trying to spend YOUR money, I want to go on record saying that…
Everyone has a budget and you should stick to that budget.
But… (there’s always a but)
There are very FEW things you’re left with after a wedding – your wedding photos are one of them.
Basically I am saying, don’t break the bank, but don’t necessarily go for the cheapest option either.
We’ve all heard it before.
The age old saying: “You get what you pay for”. The reason why that saying has stuck around is because it’s true.
#9: Not Hiring a Videographer
That’s right, I saved the #1 most common post-wedding regret for last.
So if it’s the most common, why do so many people opt out of this service for their wedding?
People often forgo it because of cost because if they are given the choice between photo vs. video, photo always seems to win and take priority.
While it seems like a similar expense, like you might be paying for something twice, videography captures moments in an entirely different way that allows you to really relive those moments and the entire day.
You may be thinking, “Well can’t I just do photo AND video but for cheaper so I can have both?”
The answer is yes, you can do whatever you want – but again you typically get what you pay for so maybe not the best time (you know, one of the most important days of your life) to skimp on budget in that area.
Tell me, which of these are you most likely not to do at your wedding?
Before you make any decisions, consider asking the married couples around you what they regret too. Make sure you say regrets from their wedding…don’t make it awkward!
You might just learn how to make your wedding the BEST DAY EVER with NO regrets!
Learn more about Common Wedding Regrets in the episode: