When it comes to planning your wedding day timeline there are the obvious things you have planned like a general getting ready start time, ceremony time, and reception time. I always recommend being conservative with time frames, but adding in extra buffer time just in case! Little moments like getting into your dress, looking for a missing shoe, or getting everyone gathered to get on transportation can eat up more time than you expect. It’s always better to have a timeline with flexibility than a timeline with no room to budge.
Over the years as a wedding photographer, I’ve noticed a few things that can make a difference in the flow and experience of your wedding day. So I’m sharing 3 tips to factor into your wedding day timeline!
It’s easy to overlook and underestimate the importance of adding in travel time between locations into your timeline. For example, if you’re getting ready in a location different than your ceremony venue then you need to add in the time to get there. Or if we’re heading to a different spot for wedding portraits or even going to another location for the reception, it’s important to factor in the drive time.
Even a 15-minute drive there (and maybe back) uses 30 minutes of your day. If you have an hour allocated for portraits that can eat into your time and result in things feeling rushed. Nobody likes that feeling!
It’s also important to keep in mind the time of day, day of the week, and the areas you’ll be driving through. Are you driving during rush hour or in areas with a lot of traffic? Or is the next location a quick drive down the road? What’s the parking situation? Those little details can make a difference!
Things move QUICK on a wedding day, and it can be overwhelming to not have a clear moment to breathe! Building in alone time together gives you space to relax and sit in the excitement of your wedding day! To be honest, you might be in need of a break from the busyness of the day and the people!
I highly recommend factoring in alone time, even 15 minutes, before the ceremony especially if you did a first look. If you didn’t do a first look, then I recommend adding alone time after the ceremony. A great option is setting aside 15 minutes alone before entering your reception or even during dinner! Once the ceremony ends, family photos, wedding party photos, and couple portraits can feel like a whirlwind. Look at your timeline and decide when makes the most sense for you!
If you’re working with a wedding planner or a photographer, ask them when might be best for the flow of the day to add in a private moment!
Private last dances are a newer trend that I’ve been seeing lately that I love! You’ll do your first dance in front of your friends and family at the start of your reception. At the end of the night before your wedding exit, you and your partner will share one last dance. Meanwhile, your guests will be outside getting lined up and ready for your departure while you two have a private moment together on the dance floor! It’s a great way to bookend the day as newlyweds!
As a photographer, I don’t expect you to know the best way to time out your day, so I hope this is helpful. Never be afraid to ask your wedding planner or your photographer for timeline input, we want you to have the best experience on your wedding day! For more wedding tips and real wedding inspiration check out the blog!
I’m a local Las Vegas Wedding Photographer and would love to chat with you about all things Las Vegas weddings! Head to my contact form to get in touch about your wedding or elopement!