Choosing a great Celebrant for your Ceremony!
The most important part of your wedding day is your ceremony, so why shouldn’t it reflect your personality as much as your wedding dress, shoes, bridal party clothing, flowers or reception décor?
As a Celebrant the first question I am asked is how much?
I don’t recommend asking this question first up. Why Not? (your ask) I’m on a budget (you say) Keep reading, this blog will explain Why.
True your budget is important and I acknowledge that: however, selecting a Celebrant based on price alone is not the best method and it is not usually how you select your other wedding suppliers.
Consider checking out what they offer first before you look at the price. I believe most celebrants in SA are between $400 and $1000
You may have a budget in mind but what is important is how good a fit is the celebrant to you.
Your celebrant sets the tone for the day and I am sure you want you and your guests to enjoy the ceremony and not be bored or wishing it would hurry up and be over.
Consider reflecting on what kind of ceremony you want – then selecting a celebrant that you really like and get along well with and who will make your day very special and magical. You can always tell the celebrant you really want them but they are outside of your budget and if the celebrant is able they maybe able to negotiate. However, it is a bit of a slap in the face when the celebrant hears a bride has paid $$$ on shoes or matching dressing gowns for the bridal party etc and asked for a discount on the Marriage Celebrant Services. Please consider that surely your celebrant is worth more than shoes (Sorry, mini rant over and not intended to offend anyone but just to put it out there for consideration) Don’t stop reading now… There are some good tips coming and I promise not to talk about cost anymore…..
You only get one chance to get your ceremony right and if you base your celebrant on cost alone you may be very disappointed in the result.
Most celebrants are really lovely, nice people and very genuine: Having said that – there are differences in the writing of the ceremony and the presentation of the ceremony. And it has nothing to do with price. Just because someone is $400 or $1000 has nothing to do with how great a celebrant they are. (oops I just realised I mentioned dollars again – sorry)
So now that I have dealt with the cost factor first and that’s out of the way, Lets talk & reflect on potential ceremony styles and tones.
Here are some inspirational tips to help you decide your ceremony content and tone.
Are you wanting your ceremony, to be…….
- Fun and happy with a bit (or lots) of laughter
- Very romantic and special
- Warm, personal and meaningful
- Use of flourishes such a candle ceremony, sand ceremony, hand-fasting ceremony, medieval ceremony, rose ceremony, wine ceremony.
- Themed ceremony such as Harry Potter, Star Wars, Alice in Wonderland, Mad Hatters Tea Party etc.
- Taking the time to remember those who are with us in spirit (side table with photos)
Once you have decided tone – How does any potential Celebrant stack up. Can they set this tone for the ceremony? Can they deliver a line for laughter or one for sentiment or for romance? Can they include more than one tone during the ceremony?
Questions to ask any potential Celebrant.
- Will the celebrant be doing any other ceremonies on the same day? (If the answer is Yes, this could potentially mean the celebrant will be rushed)
- Does the celebrant have a PA system?
- Is it good quality?
- Can the PA play the ceremony music?
- Is it hands free for the celebrant?
- Does the PA have other mics for other participants such as a reading or singer
- Does the PA require power?
- Will you use the PA on sand?
- Does the celebrant look after all the legal aspects?
- How early does the celebrant arrive before the ceremony?
- How long does the celebrant stay after the ceremony?
- Can the photographer use the microphone to gather all the guests in for photos?
- Does the Celebrant have insurance such as public liability / professional indemnity.
- Is the celebrant licensed to play music in a public place?
- Is the celebrant copy right covered for any readings in the ceremony?
- Does the celebrant write a personalised ceremony for every couple tailored to their personalities?
- Does the celebrant provide table and chairs for the signing?
- Does the celebrant provide a contract? – Can you read over the contract?
- Does the celebrant have a back up celebrant in case of unforeseen circumstances?
- Does someone attend on the day to help the celebrant to carry the equipment, help with the music and assist with any issues during the ceremony?
- What does the celebrant you wear?
- How long have they been a practicing celebrant?
- Does the celebrant charge extra for travel?
- If the bridal party are running late: how long will the celebrant wait?
- What if the weather turns out bad on the day and the ceremony is outside?
- Is the celebrant patient and happy to work with children and family members
- Is the celebrant happy to do a wedding rehearsal. Will there be any extra cost for this.
- Can the celebrant work with a translator for guests from another country or a signer for hearing impaired?
- Will the celebrant travel for a destination wedding? (if you are considering a destination wedding interstate or overseas)
- Does the celebrant know first aid?
- Now ask about the cost!