Post # 1
I’m in the process of booking photographer/caterer/florist and had a couple questions for those awesome bartering fiends:
My biggest problem is- how do you approach questioning if there are any discounts available without sounding like you want to rip them off? Should you get to know them and convince them you really want them for your big day and then pull the “well, it’s just out of our budget..” or do you just lay it out: “have any discounts?” How do you word this?! I’m usually the one who just pays the price no questions asked, but I really feel like it’s worth bargaining for something like outrageous wedding services.
My wedding will be in March, so that’s usually considered “off season”, but what else could I pull out of my sleeve to get a little leeway??? Any suggestions?
Post # 3
There is no harm in letting a vendor know that you are interested in them for your wedding and then asking them if there are any discounts or special offers that they can give you to make it worth your while.
Post # 4
I’d check out what is involved in the package they’re offering for the price they’re asking. If there are things you don’t want/need (for example, I don’t care about a champagne toast for 300 people or champagne and strawberries in my room at 1am), ask what can be pared out of the package and what that would reduce the price by.
Another idea is to compare different packages from different vendors. If someone gives you more for the same price but you love the 2nd companies work/food/etc better, see if they’ll bump the package a little without increasing the price.
Above all, be reasonable, have your research/comparisons done so that you’re knowledgeable and informed, but be very respectful of the vendor and understand that they are doing this for a living as well. A respectful give and take and a reasonable request will get you much further with a vendor and they won’t be offended that you’re just trying to ‘make a deal.’ Best of luck!!
Post # 5
@indibee: and Riot, thanks for the suggestions!
Thankfully the photographers I’m looking at have sort of an a la carte package which would help cut those extra costs, but otherwise I guess I’m just questioning whether or not I bring up the question of additional discounts or wait until they offer? Hm. I hate to come across as annoying seeing as though they are going to be part of the biggest day of my life. sigh.
Post # 6
I recently did a ton of negotiations with wedding venues and almost every one of them were willing to give a discount/ throw in extras just by asking. We always started with how much we like the venue and then either told them what other venues offered us or flat out asked if what they could do to fit in out budget. As long as you are not trying to get anything unreasonable im sure they will try to accomodate you. Its better to give you 10% off than to not get your business at all.
Post # 7
I negotiated everything. It never hurts to ask and only one vendor got a little hurt because she felt her prices were extremely good, which they were. I do tons of research then I go back and let them know I love their work, venue, ect but they are outside of my budget. Most vendors worked with me and it was awesome. Then again I am on really tight budget so if they hadnt I couldnt use them.
Post # 8
I spent some time negotiating with our caterer. We combined courses to duos, and simplified the cocktail hour by not doing stations. We’re also handling desserts from another bakery and saving $$$ that way.