Wedding Planner vs. Venue Coordinator – What’s the Difference?


Dear West Virginia Bride, as you start planning your wedding, one of the greatest and most valuable vendors to hire is a wedding planner. With your input, planners piece together all of the details and logistics of your day from your wedding color palette to the time of your sendoff (and every detail in between!).

As a bride you may ask “Why should I hire a wedding planner if my wedding venue has a coordinator?” Great question! Often a bride find herself been misinformed on the responsibilities of a venue coordinator and finding that the venue coordinator will not actually fill the role of an event planner at all.

It’s safe to say the most common point of confusion is why you need both? It’s because each is essential to the other’s success because both perform vastly different functions. It’s high time to explain many of the differences, so let’s get started!

Wedding Planner:

The most important fact to note: your wedding planner or coordinator works FOR and WITH YOU every step of the way. Her main job is to be your number one advocate, and one of the ways accomplishes this is by taking all of your ideas, such as those on your Pinterest board, and creating a cohesive design. Your planner also has a roster of favorite vendors who she is happy to contact and meet with you so you can continue to build your dream vendor team. And that’s all before your wedding day!

Your planner will know the names of your bridesmaids, groomsmen, parents, and close family members, and will make sure everyone processes and recesses down the aisle on cue. Plus she will liaise with your vendors to make sure everyone is on the same page (venue coordinator included!) and will never cause you to worry about what’s coming next. She already knows because every important moment is included in her wedding timeline. Your most important job: relax and enjoy your wedding! Your wedding planner has all of the details covered.

Wheeling-West-Virginia-Wedding-Yohana-Williams-Wedding-PlannerPhoto Credit: Marcellaneous Photography

Venue Coordinator:

While your venue coordinator will answer any questions you may have, her area of expertise and her top concern is your venue because she works under the guidance of your venue’s management team.

Because your venue coordinator works for your venue, she will automatically be present during your day without any extra charges. The venue coordinator will be the top person your wedding planner will look to in order to make sure she knows about all of the venue’s policies, including the amount of people permitted in your reception’s space and the exact time your wedding must come to a close without incurring a fine. Further, your venue coordinator will likely offer vendor referrals for wedding vendors who have worked within their space in the past, not necessarily the best wedding vendors for your budget or who best fit your vision or style.

However, unlike your wedding planner, your venue coordinator is permitted to leave during your event as long as another professional, such as a banquet captain, is present and able to take over. This professional will have been briefed about your wedding, but will not know every detail to the extent that your wedding planner does (that’s ok, it’s the way it should be!). Without a venue coordinator, there is more of a chance that your event will hit bumps along the way.

As a result, having both a wedding planner and venue coordinator on your wedding team is essential to the success of your big day!

Confluence Resort West Virginia Wedding Yohana WilliamsPhoto Credit: Marta Locklear at Confluence Resort Weddings


In plain words, a venue coordinator doesn’t work for you, she works with you. She will not handle contract negotiations with other vendors, attend appointments or handle the budget tracking for your event as a whole.

Your wedding planner has only your best interest in mind when making suggestions and giving advice.

As your wedding planner my role is to help you plan your wedding within budget and without any “oops, we didn’t think of that” – I get that a lot!

Happy Planning!

Do you have any questions or comments about wedding or venue coordinators? Please leave them below. I’m happy to answer them!