Welcome to the New Year! For those in the Wedding industry it is also known as Bridal Festival season! Coming up this Saturday and Sunday, January 9th and 10th, 2016 is the Spokane Bridal Festival. It is once again being held at the Spokane Convention Center in downtown Spokane. If you are engaged, or soon to be engaged this is where you want to be this weekend! There will be all sorts of wedding vendors there for you to check out all in one space.
If you’ve never been to a Bridal Fair before it can definitely be a bit overwhelming. I asked around to some of my favorite vendors for some of their tips for the best ways to do Bridal Festival.
Here is what they had to say-
“If you’re down to just a handful of vendors left; make a game plan. Research the map before starting and head directly to your favorites. No need to walk every row of you only need a DJ!”
“My #1 tip for anything like this is to bring healthy snacks. All those cake samples will get to you after a while. I mean, that’s why IKEA has a restaurant in the middle of the store”
“If you are seriously wanting to look at vendors don’t bring an entourage. Bring one, maybe 2 people max with you. If you have a lot of people chances are you won’t really stop and talk to vendors. Do bring someone though. You’ll need some moral support and an extra set of eyes are always good to have!”
“Labels or Stamps – Most every vendor that you visit during the bridal show, will ask you for your contact information, so that you can be entered into drawings or to send you follow-up information. Bring pre-printed address labels to include: your name, phone number, wedding email, and your wedding date. This will save your hand from cramping and time to be able to talk to the vendors about what really matter.”
“Create a wedding email. Creating an email address specifically for your wedding; like firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. Email addresses like .edu or .gov will most likely be blocked. Creating an email specifically for your big day will help keep your life less cluttered and less stressed during your wedding planning process. You will be receiving a lot of valuable information and communication with vendors via email. You definitely do not want to to have to sift through your personal email or your junk mail box looking for these emails.”
As you can see a little planning prior to the Fair definitely will pay off! For the day of here are a few more tips!
“Brides to come with an open mind and ready to have fun!”
“Wear comfortable shoes. It is a lot of walking. The last thing you want is to be thinking about how much your feet hurt!”
“I think taking pictures of a vendor booth that you are interested in helps you remember them. It’s easier than a notebook. There are so many business cards they can all start looking the same.”
“Don’t be afraid to ask to set up a consult with some of the bigger vendors after the Festival. This is especially a big one for photographers. I always want my couples to feel 100% comfortable hiring me, and not feeling rushed is a big part of that. Of course if you’re ready and know who you want to hire by all means do it there. That is part of why we’re there! Either way if you’re wanting to schedule a separate consult or if you’re wanting to book people there having your calendar (paper or app) and your wallet with you is good idea.”
“Did you know your ticket is good all weekend? Feel free to make a second trip! Scouting things out Saturday and then taking a break and coming back later that day works. Or come back Sunday and make a second trip through meeting with your favorite vendors. A lot of times Sunday has smaller crowds, which can lead to a little more one on one time with the vendors!”
“Take notes. Use that pen and paper (or an app on your phone) and take notes about vendors. There are often dozens, if not hundreds, of vendors at a wedding expo, and you’re going to talk to more than a few of them. Taking notes will help you remember which contests you entered, what packages the photographers offered, and why you liked this caterer or that baker. Wedding shows can be very overwhelming, so it’s easy to forget those details.”