You’ve decided to hire a DJ for your wedding reception. Good choice! The next step is to sift through your options and choose the right DJ for your big day. As you sift through your options, make sure you avoid the pitfalls of hiring a sub-par DJ that doesn’t fit with your budget or your expectations.
Being fooled an amateur
There are a lot of self-professed DJs out there with old-fashioned equipment and a play list. Don’t be fooled by their cheap price tag; it comes laden with risks. These amateur DJs don’t have back-up equipment in case their less-than-stellar equipment gives out. They usually don’t have another professional DJ in case they can’t attend (and a close buddy who doesn’t have a lot of experience doesn’t count). Typically, they don’t have a huge playlist of songs or the experience to adapt their song list to the crowd.
How to avoid this mistake: Look for the red flags of an amateur, such as a reluctance to meet at a place of business or unwillingness to show you their equipment. When talking to prospective DJs, ask them if they have back-ups available in case of an emergency (along with these other questions). Be wary of any DJs that don’t answer your phone calls or contact you several times before your big day.
Waiting too long
As much as you want to enjoy your engagement, the best wedding venues and vendors (including DJs) get booked quickly. Many a couple has experienced disappointment because their favorite DJ is already booked on their wedding date.
How to avoid this mistake: Contact an experienced wedding DJ as soon in the planning process as possible. Make sure you’re clear about deadlines, such as when they need the contract and down payment, so you can make sure you have an excellent DJ booked and confirmed for your wedding day.
Not asking the right questions
The only surprise you want on your wedding day is how much fun it is, not hidden fees or an absentee DJ. Not asking the right questions or reading through the fine print can leave you with an unpleasant surprise after your wedding reception.
How to avoid this mistake: Make sure you ask your DJ a full list of questions when you interview them so there aren’t any surprises later. Use this list of questions so you can find out all the important details, such as a full list of fees (and how long the costs cover) and what the back-up plan is in case of emergency (i.e. broken equipment, sick DJ, etc.)
Not getting asked the right questions
Don’t get so caught up in making sure you ask the right questions that you overlook what you’re not getting back from your DJ. It’s easy to be so charmed by your DJ that you don’t notice that they have a one-size-fits-all play list they use at all their weddings.
How to avoid this mistake: Be vigilant about what your DJ tells and asks you. Your DJ should ask you for key information, such as what songs you want played and never want played at your wedding (here’s how to draft the right ‘do not play’ list).