La' Heiress Blog


Is It Advisable To Pay Nigerian Wedding Vendors Fully Before The Event Day?

My clients always seem to hesitate when it comes to payment of vendor’s balances before their big day. Can I blame them? They definitely want assurance that the vendor wouldn’t bail on them and the best way to them, is by withholding a part of their payments until after the event.

The truth is, it is a 50:50 chance that vendors still won’t disappoint even with the full payment… and I would explain this in a bit.

As a Nigerian Wedding planner, I always prefer to pay my vendors fully before event, because this tends to give me more assurance that the vendors will deliver because I will try all within my power to ensure that they deliver on all their promises and our client’s expectations.

The only vendors I do not pay in full are the Photographers and Cinematographers, also known as Videographers. The reason is simple: Their work doesn’t end on the event day, as they still have deliverables to deliver after the event. So we pay them their balances when they deliver the deliverables.

The pros and cons of paying Nigerian wedding vendors fully before the event day.

Life is all about taking risks. Sometimes some risks are more dangerous to take, while some are easy peasy. This is the same when making some crucial decisions when you are planning your wedding.

And whether to pay your vendors fully before your event or not, is one of those risks you may want to weigh.

Here are some pros and cons when it comes to deciding whether or not you want to pay your Nigerian wedding vendors fully before your wedding or not.

The pros and Cons of not paying your vendors in full before your wedding.

Pro(s) of Part Payment:

The client has an upper bargaining power. The vendor may want to do a good job, so as to get their balance after the event.

Cons of Part Payment:

Not paying a vendor fully may discourage the vendor from delivering a 100% on their deliverables and here is why:

For instance, a caterer that is being paid 70% may decide to deliver 70% worth of food, for fear of not being paid her balance after the event (so as not to run at a loss). This will not be in the client’s best interest because despite the food not being sufficient (which is bad enough), the caterer will still demand for her balance after the event, regardless and there would probably be no way to find out if she delivered fully or not.

There is also the fact that when vendors are owed they believe that even their best won’t satisfy the client no matter what they do. We can attribute this to the tricky human nature. This is usually because the client may be looking for faults, so as not to pay the vendors their balances. This is usually the case most of the time.

More so, there is no more urgency when the event is over. This makes it extremely difficult to collect funds from the owing client. This, coupled with the fact that the vendor won’t even know when to call the said client, as the belief is that they would/should be on their honeymoon. This makes a lot of vendors agitated about part payments.

Pros and cons of paying your vendors in full before your wedding day

Pros of paying vendors in full

On the other hand, if vendors are paid fully before the event, the clients (+ planners) will have the boldness to demand what is expected of them. How do I put this? Let’s just say that there is this confidence that comes with when a vendor has been fully paid. We will also be able to do all our checks and balances.

There is just this ‘pride’ that comes with not owing Nigerian vendors before the event date. They will treat the job seriously.

Con(s) of Full Payment:

Sometimes, there is also a chance that the vendor may not deliver a 100% or the client’s expectations were not met by the vendor. This we cannot help either ways. But the risks are lower with paying the vendor fully before the event date.

Related: Red flags to look out for when hiring a Nigerian wedding vendor

What some of our Nigerian Wedding Vendors had to say

So I took the liberty of asking some of our Nigerian Wedding Vendors what they prefer when it comes to payments and here is what some of them had to say:

My clients have to pay in full or I won’t deliver on their event day. I have had nasty experiences with clients~ Ronniex Cakes

We must receive our payments in full before we even send their items out for delivery~ Ebenezerruth

It wouldn’t have been a bad idea to receive the balance payment after the event but Nigerians cannot be trusted. I once had a client who told me to stop disturbing them because of my balance, that I wasn’t allowing them enjoy their honeymoon. They never paid my balance and it’s been over 2 years now~ Decmaine

Ah, they have to pay my balance before the event o! I don’t even have the strength to start chasing anybody after their wedding~ 360eventee

Lama mama, they have to pay me before the event, because they just never seem to pay after the event is over. There is no urgency and fear of not showing up anymore, so they can’t be bothered~ DJ Kul Entertainment

Even as a planner, I have had my fair share of disappointments from clients who just refused to pay my balance. And no, it wasn’t because they weren’t pleased with our services, it was rather because they were already spent and probably had nothing else to pay vendors.

How to balance this

If you hired the services of a wedding planner or coordinator for your wedding, you can pay all balances to the planner or coordinator as the case may be. So they would be the one to disburse to your vendors.

Once your vendors know that their balances are safe with someone other than the client, they will feel safe about their balances and can deliver 100%.

You can also sign contracts when you hire your vendors to explain your terms in black and white. If they are okay with this, they can go ahead with their deliverables and expect their balances to be paid for the event.

This can be risky, because there is also a 50% chance that the client wouldn’t pay up after the event is over.

Whatever your decision is, ensure that everything is communicated well and all parties understand the terms of agreement.

As a Nigerian Wedding Planner, this is what I do

For my peace of mind, I prefer to pay my vendors before the event date or at most on the event day and would always urge my clients to pay into my bank account, so as to avoid stories that touch after the event.

I pay all the vendors that apart from the Photographer and Videographer fully before the event because I feel that the other vendors services end on the event day and thereby gives me no reason to hold on to their balances.

Only the Photographer and Videographer have deliverables to be delivered to the client after the event and they get paid on the day they deliver the deliverables or in some cases when edited pictures have been sent to the client for selection.

I guess all I’m trying to say is that you should do whatever works for you. The goal is to ensure a disappointment-free event.

I hope this article will help you make amore informed decision as paying your vendors is concerned.

You Know I Love You

X.O.X.O Your Integrity Planner

Olamide~ The Heiress

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