About Hawaii Wedding Websites
Every once in a while, we take a look at our competitors and it's ridiculous what some Hawaii wedding websites get away with! It's gotta be difficult to decipher what's real and what isn't, what's good and what's not, what's the whole truth versus just a part of the truth, etc..
There are basically 3 types of Hawaii wedding websites which offer services directly (versus index websites which just list the services of paid advertisers. Here are some of our thoughts regarding all three.
Officiate and Minister Websites
The priority of these websites is the officiate/minister services, everything else is secondary. What that means is that they'll spend as little as possible on the other services couples need and want i.e. photography, video, musician, limo, etc. (yet most times, they charge their clients regular rates).
The fact is, top professionals won't work for these websites because they're cheap and won't pay. Yeah, we all talk among ourselves. FYI: Some websites will give you a list referrals for vendors who charge ridiculous prices which allow for a nice "kickback".
The positive of these websites is that you can have a $95 wedding ceremony and they'll do just about anything you ask, anywhere and anytime, whether it's a good idea or not. You may also see "to good to be true" prices simply because the minister performs many of the services like photography, video, etc.. OR they just use the cheapest people who are happy to get a job every once in a while. And finally, you do have the opportunity to discuss every aspect of your ceremony if you're the type of person who needs to "connect" or be on the same "frequency" with your minister, LOL.
Wedding Planner/Coordinator Websites
These websites are run by individuals who act as a "middle-man/woman" between you and vendors and charging you a fee to plan and schedule your wedding. They do not perform any of the actual professional vendor ceremony services themselves.
Nowadays, they have to get really creative with detailing the performance of their job. They list all sorts of services to justify payment and many of those listed services are what other website already do as part of providing your services.
The main positive of a website like this is that you get to personally select and talk to the actual vendors for your event. Traditionally, you'll get a list of vendors to contract individually and the planner will coordinate them once hired by you. FYI: Not often mentioned, since you contract directly with the vendor, it's you're fault for choosing them if it doesn't work out unlike websites which assign vendors for your event.
Fees are generated in a variety of ways, the most common ways being, a flat fee or a fee based upon the percentage of money spent or a combination of the two. Many times, money is made with a additional "kick-back" paid from the vendors they suggest (hotels are famous for this). Either way, it's an extra fee added to the cost of your professional services.
This kind of website/company works for people who like complication, like the idea of selecting their own vendors, need someone to talk too about "everything", and have a good sized budget. Other than that, we don't see many other positives simply because, you're paying extra for a service many Hawaii wedding websites already provide in the price of their all-inclusive packages.
With that said, there a website like this makes sense is for helping plan and coordinate Receptions. We agree that a planner/coordinator can really be a benefit for those people who are having large event or are unable to use the tools we provide them or the Internet to do this on their own. In this case, we suggest using a website/company for your ceremony and ceremony services and then hire a planner/coordinator for your reception. You'll save some money!
What Kind Are We?
We're a vendor services run website with our primary lead vendor being a long time professional photographer (they know everything) and we have no "middle-person" (i.e. wedding planner, coordinator, website person, etc.).
We freely admit, it's primarily about the photos but, we also understand that to get great imagery we need to have great professionals who know each other and work well together. We don't just use anybody.