Coordinator vs. Planner and Why You Need One!

What is the difference between a Coordinator and a Planner?  The word is often used interchangeably even though the roles are different.  So which do you need?  Well if you missed the last post on why you need a Coordinator, take a look here.

If you’re up to speed as to why you need at minimum, a Coordinator, then let’s break down the differences for you.  It can get tricky, and with all the vendors you’re working with and all the new terms they’re throwing at you (a gobo and a posy anyone?!), I wanted to make it simple for everyone.

A Planner helps you actually plan elements of your wedding by going through options with you and lending their expert advise and opinions and then helping you book the best options.  Depending on the extent of your agreement with them (partial or full planning servies), they can help with a lot or a little.  And they typically will help you review contracts , read the fine print and ask those uncomfortable questions that you really don’t want to ask out loud.

A Coordinator puts together all the elements you’ve already planned and makes sure they go off accordingly and that the vendors fulfill their contracts.  They are also the go to person in case anything does not go smoothly.  I prefer to drop the term “day-of”, because I have never met a Coordinator who just works the “day of” the wedding.  They are so much more and are so important.  When you are referring to anything short of planning, they are then a Coordinator.  Please take major note of the fact that the Coordinator does not actually plan any element of the wedding for you, but the Planner will also coordinate the wedding for you – it is included in their services.  It’s that whole ‘a square is a rectangle but a rectangle is not a square’, phenomena.

So why do you need a planner?  And I’m not talking about the bride or groom that is totally clueless or is overworked and can barely make time for their dog.  We know why they need Planners.  But why does the average Annie need a Planner?  Isn’t a Planner a “luxury item” that isn’t really necessary?

Look, when you break it down, the whole wedding process is a luxury item!  I mean we don’t need bountiful arrangements of flowers on every table in site, but they sure as hell make us feel special and beautiful and unique for that one amazing day!  So why when you’re breaking the bank everywhere else should you also invest in a Planner?  Because they will be the only person there from start to finish to help you make the right, un-emotional, educated decisions in each department on the wedding process.  Their service is not always tangible, but it sure is worth it’s weight when you have someone guiding you through the process.  They will save you countless hours of research, back and forths and even straight up money by reviewing contracts for you and going to bat with vendors on your behalf when they’re being wishy-washy.

They are like an interior designer.  Not “needed” but so darn worth the money that they will make every moment happier and more memorable.  The time spent on your behalf doing research and putting everything together is priceless.


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