I am not an avid fan of going to crowdy places but I did not regret going to wedding fairs.
Why? Here are my reasons:
First, I was able to get tons of ideas just by looking and inquiring with the suppliers.
Second, I was able to book all my NON-NEGOTIABLE suppliers.
Third, I was able to save a lot of money because most of the suppliers in fairs offer discounted rates
Fourth, It helped me realize that cramming wedding preps is not advisable.
Let me give you our details. My fiance and I got engaged last 19 May 2018. We set our wedding date on 21 June 2019.
I attended my first wedding fair last 8 June 2018.
To date, I attended four (4) wedding fairs already.
At first, I was hesistant to go to fairs because I thought our wedding is still far away. However, what most brides say is true, time really flies so fast and you will soon realize that you do not have enough time, even to go to a wedding fair.
When I attended my first fair, I did not book anything. I just strolled, inquired and collected a lot of flyers, brochures and price rates.
At home, I organized the flyers and brochures according to kind of supplier. Then I divided them according to urgent suppliers like venue and reception and not so urgent suppliers like cake, wedding favors, bridal car, etc.
The next day, I decided to book my NON-NEGOTIABLE supplier which is our wedding photographer. I told my fiance that I cannot consider any other photographer but him. I booked our photographer twelve (12) months in advance and I did not regret it. Because I booked them during a fair, the photographer gave us a free album upgrade! (costs Php 10,000).
I also booked our prenup stylist which they gave 30% discount of their usual rate and our make up artist which she gave free two (2) heads for traditional make up.
Months have passed and I researched all other suppliers by reviving all my social media accounts. It compelled me to open my childhood accounts such as instagram just to see the suppliers and read their reviews.
After two months, we have booked our venue, reception, photographer, prenup stylist and make up artist.
It was my fiance's task to watch a lot of Same Day Edit (SDEs) and decide which videographer best suits us since he is in the US. Luckily, our chosen videographer was in the last wedding fair which I also inquired, and I asked if their offer still stands. Sadly, they only offer the big discount rate during the fair and since we decided only two months after the fair, the videographer cannot give the same discount. After talking to the representative of the videographer, she took consideration of the fact that we met during the fair and gave us partial discount. (though not as big if we really booked during the fair). That is when I realize why attending wedding fairs is very crucial!
I attended two (2) more fairs which I did not book anything but I just observed and studied the "art" and "creative" style of each supplier. In wedding fairs, you will notice that each supplier has a specific style and it depends on you, if their style is similar or close to what you envisioned.
I strongly encourage all soon-to-wed couples out there to try going to a wedding fair. I guarantee that you will definitely learn something and at the same time be motivited and excited to your Big Day!
Happy fair shopping!