San Antonio wedding planners give tips about creating the perfect wedding

San Antonio wedding planners give tips about creating the perfect wedding

What's the advantage of hiring a wedding planner for your big day?

Amanda Spakes: "It's less stress the day of the wedding and during the planning process. It helps you budget and it saves time."

Lindsey Powell: "Sometimes it's really stressful to plan a whole wedding, especially if you work a lot or already have kids. It's nice to have other opinions and feedback."

Sharlene Alexander: "It avoids a lot of mishaps and lowers costs."

How do you charge for your services and what's the cost?

Amanda Spakes: "We have all- inclusive packages that have our fees built in. A typical starting price for 150 people would be $10,000 to $12,000 and that includes location, the cake, security, catering, tables and chairs and almost everything you can think of."

Lindsey Powell: "I charge 10 percent of the total cost of what they hire me for. I charge $10 an hour if I have to meet with vendors. I don't charge to meet with people the first time, but if they have me do a lot, I will charge $10 an hour after that."

Sharlene Alexander: "A $10,000 wedding would cost about $2,000 for my services, but that does not include rentals or the food, flowers or supplies."

How do you help a couple manage their wedding budget? Is this difficult, especially if a bride has her heart set on a specific plan?

Amanda Spakes: "Before they even fully book with us, we give a pretty solid estimate. We'll have gone through every little detail, so there should be no surprises when they book with a package."

Lindsey Powell: "It gets very difficult. The very first meeting I ask for a budget. You just have to find different vendors who will help you out, and use alternative sources."

Sharlene Alexander: "I'm a very crafty person. I can make the most of any [budget]."

What makes your service stand out from what other wedding planners offer?

Amanda Spakes: "The customer service. Once the customer books with us, we don't limit the number of visits they have, and I give them my personal cell phone number. It's attention to all the little details."

Lindsey Powell: "I'll work extra to help out even if they don't have money for a wedding planner. For instance, I do free e-mail consultations. I'll also hang decorations for free if they already have them but can't afford to have someone do it."

Sharlene Alexander: "I like to think that I do weddings on a budget. I own most of the supplies, so I don't have to go to a rental company."

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