Post # 1
I’m planning this wedding long distance. Wedding is in SoCal and I’m living in Ontario, Canada. My Fiance lives there, but won’t be much help since he’s leaving for deployment soon. We’ll both be there permanently in March, wedding in May (assuming immigration cooperates with us!). I’m stressing out hardcore. We have a venue for everything so far and I have a dress, that’s basically it.
I feel like I can’t book a photographer online, without meeting them in person, but what else can I do? As for everything else, I’m just keeping my fingers crossed that I can pull it out of my ass in the two months I’ll be there before the wedding. And of course, we’ll be house hunting and moving in that time as well.
Any suggestions or advice? Anyone else in the same boat. I’m in over my head on this one.
Post # 3
I’m in the same boat looking for advice too! So far, we booked the venue in person on our last trip to PA from Boston. Since then, I booked a DJ and photographer without meeting them. Risky, I know, but I’m not going back to PA for at least a month and almost everyplace I contacted was totally booked for next fall! I thought I was fine being at least a year out, but nope. So while pricing, reviews, photos, etc. were super important, another thing I learned was to look for email and phone responsiveness! This was a must for me for planning a wedding from a distance. My photographer usually responds to my emails within a couple hours, and my DJ always seems to answer my emails at 3 am! I’m going to meet them on my next trip and hope I made good decisions. But I also wanted reputable people who had a lot of prior clients vouch for them, so that always made me feel better too. Good luck — this is tough!
Post # 4
Hello! I am planning a wedding in Ireland and I live in Illinois, so I feel both of your angst! As far as a photographer goes, whoever you have narrowed your list down to should be able to email you their portfolio, or give you a link to their portfolio if they have a website. Is it quality you are worried about? Or just not having been face to face?
But you seem to be in a good place, all things considering. You have your venue, and your dress! Two biggies 🙂
Does your venue have a preferred venders list? This has helped me out greatly. It can end up being more expensive (so far I have not run into this though) but they are almost always a safe bet because they are familiar with the space.
Good luck to you both!
Post # 5
yep. wedding in california, but we live in DC.
Post # 6
I don’t know if its something in your budget but have you thought about getting a wedding planner? You could even get a week of or day of planner. They can take a lot of pressure off. I’m living in LA and planning a wedding in San Diego (which is hardly a long distance planning) but our planner helped us to narrow down options such as florists, djs, etc. You could also set up a phone or skype interview with your vendors! Where are you getting married? I have an AMAZING photographer who is ridiculously cheap because she’s young and graduated from Brooks Institute of Photography in 2008. You can get recommendations from other bees and than set up phone/online meetings. DON’T leave it to the last minute!!! You will be totally overwhelmed with the move!
Post # 7
I had to plan mine from a distance as well. I went on TheKnot.com and look at photographers listed based on state. Then I facebooked them and looked at their porfolios. I also emailed brides who commented on their page thanking them and asked those brides if they could show me their wedding photos and tell me their experience with the photographer.
Now my photographer is booked and I have complete faith it will work out. The best thing to do is make a list of what you need to do and how soon. Then start doing them one by one. The more you do, the less angst youll feel. Good luck!
Post # 8
I am in the same boat too! I live in Delaware and my wedding is in Massachusetts. We have our venue and church set as well as my dress and bridesmaid dresses. It is a bit of a hassle to get home on weekends sometimes, so I have been looking at photographers and DJs online, which has been OK. I am stressed too! Trying to finish grad school and plan my wedding is going to be difficult but I know it will work out and be ok.
I hope everything works out for you, I am sure you will have a beautiful wedding no matter what 🙂
Post # 9
I’m in the same boat as all of you girls too. I am finding it really challenging!! We are from Victoria, Canada and getting married in Joshua Tree/Palm Springs in October 2012. We are going in a few weeks to look at a venue where we will have the reception-dinner-(and guest accomodations for some family) which will be a mansion. I can’t even begin to imagine talking to a florist, a photographer ect ect without meeting in person first. But I guess that is all part of a destination wedding.
Post # 10
I am doing this too. Luckily the hotel where I booked my wedding has a planner and she corresponds with me through email, so it’s super easy.
I was worried about finding a photographer and started emailing some but then I decided to just ask my photographer who did my e-photos if she would consider coming to Hawaii with us. To my surprise she said yes and it will actually cost me less than hiring someone over there.
Now the only real thing I am worried about is finding someone good to do my hair and makeup without a trial. I might go and get a trial a couple of days before my wedding just to be sure.
Post # 11
I’m in this as well. I live in Kuwait, but am getting married in Ontario, Canada.
I made sure to go home this past summer and met with a lot of people so I could start booking things. I also booked a planner to make my life a bit easier. I’m going home again at Christmas, so hopefully we can finish some more stuff off.
My biggest challenge is that Kuwait doesn’t have a good mailing system, so getting invites out is going to suck.
Post # 12
I’m getting married only 30 minutes from where I live but we were looking at florists and decided we didn’t want to go meet all of them, Vendor meetings haven’t really been fun so far. So we emailed around to get rough estimates but one florist, that’s about an hour from where we are, offered to Skype us if we didn’t want to come in for a meeting. I know that may seem weird but it’s something you can ask potential vendors if they’re willing to do that, especially your photographer (because you need to see if your personalities will work well together).
Post # 13
I’m just glad I’m not the only one. I’m a bit frustrated.
@jennlb: I hadn’t considred a prefereed vendor’s list. I hadn’t even asked. I’ll definitely look into it! Thanks for the suggestion!
@eimajleigh: I’ve toyed with a wedding planner, but we’re doing something really low budget, and I’m not sure I can justify it/talk Fiance into it. I wish our venue had something to offer. Luckily they really are being wonderful to us. We have cermony/reception/all catering through one palce and they coordinate all that themselves. I PM’d you about the photographer, too!
Good luck to all the other lond-distance brides, I was having a little meltdown when I posted this but I’m feeling a bit better.
Post # 14
@thursdayschild: I just PM-ed you back with her info! Here’s two of her pics from our engagement photos (sorry so big!!):
Post # 15
Planning in PA from the Midwest. It’s been a hassle, but my fiance’s family lives there, and so they’ve been very helpful. Every time we get back East we try to do a few of the things that we *can’t* do from afar — like taste cake! (Unfortunately we weren’t sold on any of them, so I didn’t get to strike any off the list.)
I hired my photographer and DJ without meeting them…but my photographer A) has some nice reviews on the Bee; B) took the time to have a lovely phone conversation with me, during which we chatted like old friends, and C) was one of two within our price range. And of course the photos on her website are beautiful! As far as the DJ goes…my fiance talked to him for about half an hour on the phone, and said he seemed like a solid guy. If we meet him in person over Christmas and he seems like a jerk, then we’ll lose our deposit and look elsewhere, but we’re not too worried.
In short — you can do it! The Internet is your friend. 🙂
Post # 16
I am living in Virginia and planning a Nebraska wedding. I had an hour phone meeting with my photographer where we went over everything we would have covered in a face to face session. You can tell their personality by the phone, and get an idea of how to operate. Also, if you look at their portfolios online and they are all very good, you should have nothing to worry about! If they are amazing, they will be amazing for you no matter if you’ve met them face-to-face previously or not. Good luck!