The simple answer is no.
Technically, you can plan everything by yourself and ask your friends to help run errands for you during the ceremony, and hope your bridal party can help take care of the pre-ceremony errands whilst also getting ready. I’m not being sarcastic – it’s completely do-able and cost friendly. I’ll be completely honest as the friend who is almost always asked to be the unofficial wedding planner/coordinator – I wouldn’t trade my spot for the world. It’s humbling and a blessing to be able to walk so intimately with my friends in this part of their life, and to see to it that their wedding day goes without a hitch. However, sometimes it really does suck to have to miss parts of the ceremony to make sure the reception is well decorated, and then to not really have time to mingle with friends whilst I am making sure the reception is running well.
It is useful to have a wedding planner by your side to help make sure everything is going according to plan, and to have them facilitate the entire wedding planning process. Please keep in mind that not all wedding planners also coordinate, so please be sure to ask your planner if they (or their team member) will be coordinating. Most venues also provide their own event coordinator to make sure all things are within their guidelines, so that is also an option to go for* If you have a separate coordinator, what is helpful is that they will usually start coming in about a month or two before your wedding to familiarize themselves with what needs to be done, so that you have peace of mind in knowing there is a point person for everything, and that guests are able to fully enjoy the wedding experience.
Wedding planners can seem expensive, but having a wedding planner can actually help you lower costs. While they do cut into your budget, wedding planners can also help you with negotiating down prices. A wedding planner usually has a list of preferred vendors, where – full transparency – they might get a bit of commission if you choose to go with the recommendation. On the plus side, you are getting the benefit of a wedding planner negotiating on your behalf as a loyal customer and referral. Think of it as a discount code – but for multiple vendors. Percentage off a retail shopping order may not seem a lot, but when you are planning a multi-thousand dollar wedding, your discount code will go a long way!
Another great thing about a wedding planner is that they can help make sure that everything is a seamless process. Event planning is stressful, and even more so if it’s something as important as your own wedding! A wedding planner can help remind you of things that you may not regularly have to do – such as remembering when all the different vendors and different policies need to be paid for. It can definitely get a little messy since all vendors have different policies and time frames.
Weddings big and small can definitely greatly benefit from having a wedding planner/coordinator. While not necessary, we can cut out a lot of the unnecessary stressors that can keep you from focusing on the most important part of your wedding: celebrating the love you have found, and celebrating the people who have shaped and molded you and walked alongside you in this journey. I am certainly not the only wedding planner in the world, so I highly suggest you go to multiple wedding planners and find one who not only is within budget, but someone you like. A wedding planner who not only understands you from a surface level, but understands your vision from the inside out will be able to work well with you to make your dream a reality.