Wedding consultants work with brides planning and executing all facets of a wedding. They require a bachelor's degree and can attain certification. Consultants are often hired based on experience and reputation.
A wedding consultant works with brides to plan, organize and manage weddings. Consultants handle tasks such as assisting with the reception menu, booking a DJ and maintaining the gift registry. Wedding consultants often work under strict deadlines, require excellent organizational skills and must pay attention to detail. A bachelor's degree is commonly required; wedding consultants may also earn voluntary professional certification in their field.
|Required Education||Bachelor's degree|
|Certification||Voluntary professional training and certification is available|
|Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)||10% for meeting, convention and event planners*|
|Median Annual Salary (2016)||$35,492 for wedding consultants**|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **PayScale.com
Job Options in Wedding Consulting
Wedding consultants, also known as wedding planners, may be self-employed, work for a wedding event company or work at a wedding event venue, such as a hotel. Full-time wedding consultants average more than 40 hours a week during the busy season from March until November, according to the BLS. According to PayScale.com, the annual salary (including pay, bonuses, overtime and commissions) for most wedding consultants ranged from $19,595-$82,198, as of January 2016, with the median salary being $35,492.
Wedding Consulting Requirements
Wedding consultants may handle every detail or just certain aspects of organizing and planning a wedding. A wedding consultant must be detail-oriented, because clients expect that a consultant will not make any mistakes or overlook any task that he or she is assigned to handle. To ensure accuracy, many wedding consultants keep records and maintain a schedule of all tasks and activities. A wedding consultant may be asked to give advice to the bride or assist the bride with tasks such as choosing decorations, creating a music list for the reception or selecting attire for the wedding party. Wedding consultants are also responsible for booking vendors, such as the caterer and florist.
Certification and Education
Wedding consultants often get hired based on their reputations and experience. New consultants may have experience in event planning or have certification to prove their abilities as a wedding consultant. The Association of Bridal Consultants (ABC) offers a training program and awards the title of Professional Bridal Consultant (www.bridalassn.com). The ABC training program offers education in several areas, including etiquette, marketing, religious ceremonies, customer service and general event planning.
The Association of Certified Professional Wedding Consultants (ACPWC) also offers a comprehensive education in all aspects related to owning and running a wedding consulting business (www.acpwc.com). Course topics include budgets, management, business start-up, networking, customer service, working with vendors, scheduling and ceremonies. Certification from the ACPWC is available at three levels. Level one is a certificate of completion, level two earns a professional title and level three offers a certified title.
Wedding consultants typically possess a bachelor's degree along with excellent organizational skills. Their median annual salary is about $35,000 and the job outlook for wedding consultants is faster than the job market.