Sunday Romance will be at the San Diego Wedding Event on Oct. 9th. Here are some helpful tips on navigating through the show, or any bridal show for that matter.
BEFORE THE EVENT
Register a separate, wedding e-mail address
Many vendors are offering great deals so you’ll want to leave an e-mail address. However you don’t want these same vendors e-mailing you after you’ve married, so it’s best to contain these e-mails into one account.
Put together an inspiration book
Put together an inspiration book with ideas of how you envision your wedding. Find pictures of dresses, cakes, flowers, photography style, venues, etc. They can be magazine cutouts or online print outs. The more you bring, the better you can communicate your ideas to vendors.
Put on your walking shoes
At larger shows, you’ll be walking a lot more than you realize. There’s the trip from the parking lot to the show itself. The showroom may look like a simple distance, but you will walk up and down each aisle, covering nearly every square foot of the show room. There will also be times when you want to revisit a vendor.
Bring a friend
Talking to vendors one-on-one can be quite intimidating. A friend, or good family member, can help you rationally decide which vendors are best for your wedding.
Bring bottled water
After all that walking and talking, you will be dehydrated. Cake tastings will make you thirsty as well. Vendors will sell water at a premium. If you blanch at the thought of purchasing a $5 bottle of water, bring your own.
Bring a little cash
You may come across unexpected costs such as parking.
DURING THE EVENT
Pick up a giveaway bag
You’ll want to nab as many goodies and brochures as you can. A bag will serve most helpful.
Collect as many fliers, postcards, rate sheets as you can. The more information you have on a vendor, the easier it will be to make a decision.
Take a break
Take a little break when you start to feel tired. Your head will be swimming with information. You don’t want to start signing contracts and placing deposits until you’re absolutely sure.
If it’s busy, move along, come back later…
There’s no use in trying to talk to a vendor with a crowd. By the time they get to you, they may hastily rush you along to get to the next person. The crowd will not always be there and instead of waiting in line, it’s best to just keep moving and come back to that vendor later.
Revisit and ask questions
Often you won’t have questions until after you walk away. Revisit vendors and ask them questions, or schedule an appointment if you have more than a couple questions.
Fashion shows fill up fast, seat early
Fashion shows are the most popular attraction at bridal shows. If you plan on a good seat, get there early.
AFTER THE EVENT
Categorize the vendors
You’ll be loaded with a ton of information. Start by sorting the vendors into their respective categories. Filing folders help.
Start with the category you like most
If you start with a category you like (say, photography) you’ll enjoy choosing that particular vendor. If you place a priority on that category, you’ll also want to book this vendor quickly.
Narrow it down
Narrow down to your top 2-3 favorites per category. Research reviews, check out their websites. Once you feel comfortable, book as soon as possible.
The steps after an event may take a few days or even weeks. Whatever you do, only book a vendor when you’re calm, collected, and certain.
- Tips on Attending Bridal Shows
- 7 Things to Expect at a Bridal Show
Don’t forget to register for one FREE admission!