35 Wedding Planning Questions You and Your Partner Should Discuss
The key decisions that you need to make when preparing for your dream wedding
A wedding is made up of 100s of decisions, big and small. It’s easy to feel daunted by it all, but you’ve got this. It’s all about prioritizing the most important wedding planning decisions that you and your partner need to discuss. And once you’ve done that, you can enjoy the journey to your big day a whole lot more. With this in mind, here are 35 of the most important wedding planning questions.
The top 20 crucial questions
1. What’s your dream wedding date?
When choosing your wedding date, there’s a lot to think about. You need to take into account seasons, the weather, your commitments, and the availability of your wedding party. You also need to give yourself enough time to plan your wedding too. If you’re stuck in choosing, you could pick a cute date that’s significant to you both, for instance, the day you first met.
2. What’s your budget?
Keep an eye on that wallet. Weddings can often cost more than brides and grooms expect, with a lot of hidden and surprise costs that you didn’t anticipate. That’s why it’s important to plan a wedding budget that’s super detailed, accounting for just about any expense you can think about. It can also be a good idea to overestimate how much your wedding will cost, just to be on the safe side. And remember that part of the key to budgeting is prioritizing what’s important—designer dress, luxury honeymoon, or venue to die for?
3. How many guests will you invite?
Guest lists can be a sticky issue, especially if you and your partner have big families. So take time to think about your wedding guest list carefully, factoring in food and drink costs for each person. No matter how much you might want to invite distant cousins Ricky, Nicky, and Vicky, or all of your old college buddies, remember that your guest list has to match your budget.
4. What’s your vision for the wedding theme?
Whether you’re going for classic, rustic, quirky, vintage, elegant, or whimsical, your wedding theme is a big deal. It has to be something that both you and your partner relate to and that expresses your unique personalities, as well as the kind of relationship you have. So make sure that you choose a theme that you can both get excited about—and set boundaries with your family around this. Meaning that if you’re both free-wheeling free spirits who’d like a barefoot wedding, then a super traditional ceremony might not be for you—no matter how much your parents might be pushing for it.
- Do you want an indoor or outdoor wedding?
It goes without saying that both weather and season are big considerations when deciding whether your wedding is going to be indoors or al fresco. But you also want to think about the atmosphere that you’re trying to create too. It’s not a rigid rule by any means, but indoor weddings can create a more classic, elegant, and traditional vibe, while outdoor weddings can feel more relaxed and free. For instance, a royal-themed wedding might work very well indoors in a grand reception room with chandeliers, while a more bohemian soiree would be perfect for a pretty flower garden.
- Do you want a daytime or evening ceremony?
While daytime ceremonies are more traditional, evening affairs are growing more popular. That’s because you can create an enchanting atmosphere with things like fairy lights, torches, and candles, as well as mesmerizing effects like a bridesmaids and groomsmen entrance with sparklers or lanterns.
- What type of ceremony suits you best—religious, civil, or something unique?
When making this decision, consider your beliefs, family traditions, and personal values. In the end, while it’s important to chat with your family about it, your choice of ceremony should be personal to you and your partner.
- Who will officiate the ceremony?
While it’s not always possible, ideally, your officiate should be someone that you are already connected to in some way. So try to choose someone who knows you well and can personalize the ceremony, whether that’s a pastor, priest or rabbi, family member, or close friend. But if that’s not possible, then make a point of trying to build a relationship with your officiate before the wedding—and make sure to choose someone that you’re comfortable with.
- Will you write your own vows or go with traditional ones?
At your wedding ceremony, it’s important to express your love and commitment in a way that feels authentic to you both. So that could mean exchanging the classic, traditional vows, or writing personal wedding vows that can make your ceremony unique to you.
- What will you wear?
Traditional big bridal gown and morning suit? Fairytale princess and prince? National dress that reflects your ancestry and heritage? Your wedding is your dream day, so choose your ideal matching outfits—and make sure that everything else is coordinated thematically. So if you’re going for a formal Kate Middleton style bridal gown, then flowy bohemian bridesmaids dresses might not be a match for this.
11. Are you planning pre-wedding events, like an engagement party or a bridal shower?
In the lead up to a wedding, there can be a lot of expectations about the kind of events you’re going to throw, from engagement parties, to bridal lunches, to bridal showers, to bachelor and bachelorette parties. While these traditions are all terrific, they can also be a lot of pressure—and a lot of expense. So don’t let yourself feel pushed into hosting every event under the sun. Remember, it’s all about the budget and what you feel comfortable with.
- What’s your photography and videography style?
Gone are the days when there was only one style of wedding photo, generally with everyone standing posed in formal groups. While there is 100% a place for this photography style, there are lots of other options too. So decide whether you want a classic or candid approach, as well as getting ready photos. And also, consider whether you want to hop onto the unplugged wedding trend.
- What’s your vision for wedding invitations and stationery?
Set a tone with your stationery that matches your overall theme. From elegant to whimsical to mimimalist, choose designs that match your personalities, design aesthetic, and style. And to cut costs, you could also handcraft your invitations.
14. Will you have a full wedding party?
Despite what the movies would make you believe, it’s not compulsory to have a whole gang of bridesmaids and groomsmen. You might prefer your wedding to be a more intimate affair, with just one maid of honor and best man. If you’re wrestling with this decision, then check out our guide to choosing your bridesmaids.
- What kind of transportation do you want?
Plush white limousine? Fairytale princess carriage? Harley Davidsons? Again, how you arrive at your ceremony should reflect your personalities and wedding theme. So if you want to gallop up on horseback for your Lord of the Rings or Game of Thrones wedding, then don’t hold back.
16. Are you going to have a traditional meal?
While sit-down, multi-course meals are the classic way to go, you could also consider a swish cocktail party reception. Or what about a buffet-style affair with different food tables scattered around, such as a pasta bar, salad bar, or even a quirky mashed potato station?
- What’s your seating arrangement strategy?
Depending on your family and friend dynamics, wedding seating charts can be a minefield. If there have been divorces, breakups, or family dramas, then you’re going to have to consider your table arrangements super carefully. So think about your guests’ various connections, make sure you mix both sides of the family, and try your best to create a harmonious atmosphere.
- How will you incorporate your cultural or regional traditions into the wedding?
If you and your partner are from different heritages, then how will you make sure that your theme, ceremony, and reception honor both of your backgrounds?
- Are you planning a rehearsal dinner?
A rehearsal dinner is a chance to gather with close family and friends the night before your big day. While it’s a great tradition, it’s also an added expense—and you might also prefer some much-needed downtime in those anxious hours before your big day. So think about whether it’s an idea that works for you and if so, choose a restaurant or venue where you feel totally relaxed.
- Will you have a wedding planner or coordinator?
When deciding on hiring a wedding planner, consider the level of support that you need, the busyness of your schedule, how big your budget is, and how big a wedding you want to throw. Remember that a wedding planner can help ease the stress and ensure that your big day unfolds seamlessly.
15 other key wedding planning questions
- What’s your dream wedding cake?
A tiered white cake decorated with delicate icing flowers is a real classic—but you don’t need to stick to that if it’s not your scene. From rustic wedding cakes, to cupcake tiers, to indulgent chocolate ganache, choose a flavor and style of cake that you love. Or you could always serve up a wedding pie instead!
- What other desserts or treats do you want to serve?
From donut walls, to chocolate fountains, to tasty crepe stations, think about how you want to satisfy your guest’s sweet-toothed cravings. Don’t forget to take into account any vegan or gluten-free guests.
- Will you have a gift registry?
Creating a registry with a list of essential homeware will give you a head start to your married life, but it’s not compulsory. Some couples leave it up to their guests to decide what to bring, or even encourage charity donations instead.
- What’s your approach to wedding favors?
Choosing meaningful tokens can express your gratitude to your guests for celebrating with you. Decisions that you need to make include budget and whether you will be sharing quirky, elegant, or even homemade tokens.
- How will you handle guest accommodations?
If you’ve got family and friends traveling from out of town, then make sure they have comfortable places to stay. Help them out and make them feel welcome by looking into nearby hotel options, and maybe include a note about this with your invites.
- What’s your ideal music playlist?
Whether it’s hymns, gospel, motown, country, rock, or swing, curate a playlist that reflects your personalities. Make sure to set the right ambience for each part of your celebration, from bridal entrance to first dance.
27. Do you want a photo booth or other interactive elements?
Adding fun elements to your wedding, such as a photo booth, games, or activities, can keep guests entertained. But if you’re going for a more elegant affair then this might not fit with your vibe.
- What’s your plan for handling unforeseen circumstances, like bad weather or last-minute changes?
For instance, if you’re having an outdoor wedding, then you’ll probably want to hire a marquee as backup. Just be ready to be flexible, have a backup plan, and keep a cool head.
- What’s your strategy for managing stress and staying connected during the planning process?
Wedding planning can be stressful at times, so don’t let it get in the way of your relationship. Lean on each other for support, communicate openly, and consider stress-reduction techniques.
- How will you include family members in your special day?
Don’t forget those closest to you in the whirlwind of your wedding planning. Try to give meaningful roles to your loved ones so that they can feel involved, for instance, bachelorette party planner or menu consultant who attends the wedding tasting with you.
31. What’s your dream honeymoon destination?
Remember that your choice of wedding date can affect where you go on honeymoon—for instance, if you plan your wedding at the same time as the peak season for a destination, then this could put your honeymoon out of reach, cost-wise.
- Will you write personal thank you notes to your guests?
Expressing your gratitude with heartfelt thank you notes is a great way to show appreciation for their presence and gifts. That said, it’s one more big task to deal with when you get back from your honeymoon. So you might just want to send out a lovingly worded thank you via email, social media, or a WhatsApp wedding group message.
- What’s your vision for the first dance?
Selecting a song that showcases your personalities, musical tastes, and wedding theme will make it a memorable moment. Practicing an accompanying dance will wow your guests—so get ready for that Dirty Dancing big lift!
- How will you document your wedding journey?
Your wedding is about so much more than the big day. So think about whether you want to capture wedding planning, dress fittings, and lead-up events through photos, videos, or a journal of your entire wedding experience.
- How will you continue building your relationship after the wedding?
After the wedding, there’s the marriage. So don’t let the romance slip after your big day. Talk about how you’re both going to keep the fire burning, for instance, through date nights, open communication, and special shared experiences.
Ready for Your Big Day?
At Il Tulipano in Cedar Grove, we offer an unforgettable New Jersey wedding venue surrounded by beautiful gardens. Our iconic space has just had a makeover and has been praised by New Jersey Bride, The Knot, and Wedding Wire. The Il Tulipano team will treat you like family, so get in touch with us today and let’s plan your dream wedding.
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