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I don’t think I’ve ever walked into a business, office, store, etc. and asked to receive the same items/service for less money. When it comes to negotiating with wedding vendors, that’s exactly what you shouldn’t do!
I completely understand that weddings aren’t cheap and that for many people, they are a huge financial sacrifice; however, there is a wrong and a right way to negotiate with wedding vendors.
The Wrong Way to Negotiate
Asking for discounts purely for the sake of discounting not only devalues the work that the professional does and is unfair to the couples who paid full price, but also gives vendors small red flags about the difficulty you might pose down the road. I say this because many business owners from various disciplines have learned that the clients who want everything for nothing often have heavy demands and complaints throughout the entire process, thus leading to an unpleasant and unfair experience for the vendor.
If you wouldn’t go to a restaurant and ask for money off your bill “just because,” don’t do it to the wonderful wedding vendors who are working to make your most important day the best it can be. They have spent years growing their business with clients who were happy to pay full price and deserve the rates they charge. :)
The “Right” Way to Negotiate
So now that I’ve gotten the “wrong” way to negotiate out of the way, let me discuss the “right” way to negotiate. Say that you have a $4,000 wedding photography budget but the photographer you love the most only shows packages that start at $4,500.
Instead of asking the photographer if you can have the $4,500 package with a $500 discount (wrong way), simply tell them your honest budget and ask what they could create for you that would fit within your budget. Many photographers are happy to create custom collections that will fit your budget, as long as the collections meet their minimum.
Appreciate and respect the talent and time of your potential and hired wedding vendors and understand that weddings are how they make their living. Now that you’ve learned the wrong and right way to be negotiating with wedding vendors, you’ll be much better equipped for all of your vendor bookings!