Negotiating with Wedding Vendors

Negotiating with vendors, if it’s not a skill you’re used to using, can be tricky, tiresome, and stressful. Maintaining transparent, open communication with them can help you to retain your status as a bride, and not a bridezilla, and from having your parents or fiance experiencing the “chipper chicken” scene from Father of the Bride.

You already know that communication is key. Here are some ways to communicate effectively with your vendor, and to make the planning process go a little more smoothly.

Lay out the competition. Do your homework, and know what other vendors are offering when you discuss pricing and deals. Asking them if they’re willing to match the price is often a good indicator of what you can expect from them. How much do they want your business? How willing are they to serve your needs? If not, is their product superior enough to be worth the extra cost?

Open up. Explain to them your wedding planning story, your ideas, what factors are weighing down the budget. The more you invest in communicating with them, the more you’ll find out whether they are receptive to that, or not. If not, this may not be a business relationship you want to concern yourself with.

Be ok with saying no. Even if the flowers and price are right, if you’re not clicking with the florist, for whatever reason, shop around a bit more. If your gut instinct is giving you red flags about a company or the vendor you’re dealing with, you could be right. Even if you’re not, you’ll be subconsciously stressed about it throughout the entire planning process–and you certainly don’t have room for that.

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