My second post on Marriage Prep Series is “Shopping for Suppliers” this one is the most exciting part for me. Syempre naman shopping (yay), plus my fiancé “Mark” is very supportive (I’m such a spoil bride-to-be). I wonder & imagine, then I choose, I change my mind, then I choose again, and I decide “ito na, I like this” then I haggle, I asked suppliers for discounts (and freebies) and smile and sigh (that feeling… of another milestone, another check from our list, thank you Lord for the favor). Then, Mark will come in, bilang OC sya at impatient ako sa details, he read and review the contracts, he asked (a lot of) questions. He signed the contract and follow-up with suppliers. Again, it’s a teamwork and overflowing favor from the Lord.
Here’s what we did and what we’ve learned on shopping for wedding suppliers:
- We focus on what we need & how we want it to be delivered. In pre-planning stage, we already identified what we need. Now in shopping stage, we already know what we want from suppliers, we considered quality of products or services being offered, value for money, their company profile and as well as supplier’s personality & style.
- We Google. Everything you need to know what suppliers can offer is available online. It’s important to check out their portfolios, customer reviews, blog posts and other social media reviews say a lot about your supplier. We also validated our research by asking some family or friends who have previously work with these suppliers. We get their feedback, it definitely help us to decide!
- We source and compare. Based on our online and reference research, we source at least five suppliers. I contacted them and asked for their wedding packages quotation through e-mail and phone. Most of suppliers required information such as wedding date, venue, number of guests and your contact details. Some replied immediately, some takes forever to reply (Tip: observe, how they respond in your inquiry, its says a lot on how they will deliver). Once you have their quotation, review & compare (again I use MS Excel spreadsheet) together with your fiancé then narrow down your choices into 2-3, then set-up a meeting with them. In our experience, it’s best to meet with your possible suppliers face to face, so you would have a feel of working with them, address your inquiry immediately. Tip: Carefully observe their professionalism and the way they manage you as their possible customer.
- We attend a Wedding Fair. After sourcing, my fiancé and I, joined Weddings & Beyond Bridal Fair held last May 09 & 10 , 2015 at the PICC Forum Pasay City. We meet with our preferred suppliers here. This saves us time, money and energy, as we are meeting them in one place (though, we feel exhausted as we finished at 8pm). We took advantage of big discounts being offered during the fair, but been very careful of ending up buying what we don’t need just because of big discounts & freebies. I mean, you already know what you need, so focus on that! Mark and I, has a clear objective before we went to the bridal fair. We need suppliers for photo/video, cake, coordinator, florist and invitation, so we only get flyers and visited booths related to this. We got flyers, talked to suppliers, sit down (over a cup of coffee and hotdog bun), brainstorm together, then we choose! Tip: Do Source & Compare, so you have idea on the cost before going, so you know how far can you bargain and be fair with suppliers too. Thank God, we got good deals from our preferred suppliers during the fair!
- Lastly, carefully review contract terms and conditions carefully before deciding. Syempre, ang napaka-OC kong finance ang in-charge dyan!
That’s five simple steps, focus, google, source & compare, attend wedding fair, review and decide! Hope this helps. I will post our chosen suppliers soon. Enjoy your wedding planning lovely couples!
A happy marriage is a new beginning of life, a new starting point for happiness and usefulness.
– Dean Stanley