Lessons in Wedding Planning: How to get the most out of a wedding show
21 Feb 2017
Fresh from attending Bride: The Wedding Show at Norfolk Showground, bride-to-be Jessica Phillipson advises how you can get the most out of similar events
The blog is a little late this month, but that's because I wanted to write about my first wedding show experience.
Yes, we left it a little late in the day with the wedding just two months away, but we had a fantastic time, so I wanted to share my tips for getting the most out of a wedding show.
1. Sign up to newsletters
Whether it's local wedding shows or larger events in London, sign up to the relevant newsletter for that show. Most will offer discounts on tickets if booked in advance, not to mention running lots of competitions to win either free tickets or prizes towards your wedding.
2. Choose your fellow visitors carefully
Just like dress shopping, you only want to take people whose opinion you really trust. You don't want to walk out having hired your cousin's dream car for your day.
3. Arrive early
Queues very quickly build up at these events, so rather than spend the first hour of your visit waiting to get in, get there early and make the most of it.
4. Find a map
Most shows have a map of which stands are where. Mark down the ones you want to visit and head straight to them first. It's also worth heading to the stand furthest from the main entrance first as those nearer the entrance get clogged up at the beginning of the day. Head to the back and enjoy the room to breathe, not to mention one-on-one service.
5. Take a list
Some stands at some wedding shows can feel like a high pressure sales environment, so it's worth making a list of what you are looking to buy on the day, setting a budget for each thing and sticking to it. Yes, there are many exclusive wedding show deals, but make sure you're only getting deals on things you actually want. If you don't, you'll walk out with a cabaret act, glitter fountain and feather boas for every guest, wondering why your bank card is falling apart and where your wedding fund went.
6. Take a note pad
Just because you're not splashing your cash (see above point) doesn't mean you can't get stacks of ideas. Take notes, pick up leaflets, take phone numbers and assess/follow up when you get home.
7. Enter everything
Wedding shows are packed with competitions. Whether it's winning a service for free or just a bottle of bubbly, scout around and enter everything. It could be your lucky day.
8. Get involved
Even though we've sorted everyone's outfits for the day, we still attended the fashion show at Bride: The Wedding Show and I am so glad we did - it was so much fun.
9. Take a break
It's supposed to be an enjoyable day out, so make sure you take some time to stop, have a bite to eat and a glass of something to celebrate your upcoming wedding.
10. Leave before the end
Only by 30 minutes or so; but when thousands of people are all trying to leave a place at once, you'll want to get a head start.
Wedding shows are one of the most fun parts of the wedding planning process, so make the most of them. You can find details of shows, events and fairs near you using WeddingSite's online calendar.
For more details on upcoming Bride: The Wedding Shows, visit www.theweddingshow.co.uk.