Category Archives: wedding DJ contract

wedding day planned after meeting with DJ

What is included in a wedding DJ cost?

Budgeting funds for a wedding DJ can feel like a guessing game full of questions. How much does a good wedding DJ cost? What services does a wedding DJ offer? How do I find a wedding DJ that keeps my guests on the dance floor without busting the budget?

Hiring the Right Wedding DJ

Every wedding DJ offers different services as part of the cost. At the very least, a wedding DJ should offer the basic services: equipment and a DJ. At the very most, a wedding DJ service should provide equipment, an experienced (this is important!) DJ, back-up equipment and DJ (in case of emergencies). Some DJ services also provide other entertainment as part of a package deal, such as lighting or a photo booth rental.

Choosing the right DJ and wedding DJ cost starts with setting a wedding budget. (This article from Wedding Wire can give you insight into the amount for the wedding DJ line on the budget.) The next step is to compile a list of wedding DJs to contact about services and wedding DJ cost. As you contact DJs, watch for red flags that signal they are not the right DJ for your special day. Be cautious about wedding DJs who don’t have a business address, don’t want to meet or show their equipment, or don’t return your calls.

Once you have compiled a prospective list of wedding DJs, interview each service to narrow down your options. Ask each wedding service:

  • “Are you available on our wedding DJ?”
  • “How long have you DJ’ed at weddings?”
  • “What is the cost of your services? What do those costs cover? Do you charge overtime fees?”
  • “Have you ever DJ’ed at my venue? Do you charge a travel fee for coming to my venue?”
  • “Do you have insurance? Can you provide proof of insurance?”
  • “What is your plan if your equipment breaks down or a DJ can’t make it?”
  • “Do you offer any other services or package deals?”
  • “Is dinner music provided as part of the cost? Does the DJ serve as an emcee?”
  • “Can we meet? What is the best way to contact you as we plan our wedding reception?”

In addition to an interview, research each DJ service. Check their social media sites and major wedding websites for reviews from past customers. Before signing on the dotted line, carefully review the contract fine print to ensure that the DJ is the “one” who fits your needs and your budget.

Wedding Budget Tips

  • Allocate the majority of budget funds for wedding details that make a big impact on guests, such as the venue, catering, and entertainment. While a particularly budget-busting favor may be incredibly cute, good food and an excellent wedding DJ have a bigger overall impact on guests’ experience.
  • Use a wedding budget checklist or wedding planning app to stay within budget and avoid overspending on minor details.
  • If the wedding budget is a concern, try to choose a wedding date during the off-peak season (when weddings aren’t popular) and on a day that isn’t in high demand (such as a Thursday, Friday, or Sunday).
  • Always review every vendor contractor for hidden fees, such as overtime charges by wedding DJs.
  • Ask wedding vendors if they offer additional services or package deals. Many wedding vendors offer discounts for packaged services (i.e. many wedding DJs offer discounts for music and lighting).
  • While sticking to a wedding budget is important, be cautious about always choosing the lowest cost option. The cheapest vendor is not always the best vendor for the job.
  • Carefully screen each wedding vendor. Look for red flags, such as a vendor with no business address or no communication before the big day.

Hiring a Wedding DJ? What to Look for in the Contract

busy woman reading through wedding paperworkIn your rush to cross off boxes on your wedding checklist, it can be tempting to buzz through the paperwork without a second thought. Who wants to sift through all the fine print on the paperwork? Who has the time?

A better question to ask might be: who doesn’t have the time when your wedding budget is at stake? Put another way, ignoring the fine print on all those wedding vendor contracts can leave you with an unpleasant surprise after your special day—a bill full of surprise charges. Unfortunately, wedding entertainment vendors aren’t immune from those kind of surprises—surprises you can avoid if you read the fine print in your wedding DJ contract.

Length of time covered

One of your first questions to a wedding DJ is “what is the cost?” The answer is usually a number; what is not always mentioned is that the number covers only a certain amount of time. If your wedding reception lasts longer than that amount of time, the DJ company charges a set overtime fee or an hourly charge.

To avoid a huge wedding DJ bill, follow up your cost question with another: how long does that cost cover? If you want to completely avoid the additional costs, cross DJs off the list that charge by the hour. Contact DJs who charge a set fee no matter how long your wedding dance lasts.

Contingency language

Noone wants to be left out in the cold—especially on their wedding day! Ask your wedding DJ about their policy in case the DJ assigned to your special day can’t attend (i.e. from a family emergency, sickness, personal issue) or if any of the equipment fails.

Don’t just take their word for it. When you are ready to book the wedding DJ, make sure all those promises are guaranteed in writing. Review the wedding DJ contract for specific language that promises a contingency plan for instances where the DJ is not available or the equipment breaks down (and be prepared to walk away if there is no contingency plan included).

Payment terms & Cancellation policy

You are responsible for meeting timely payment deadlines, so review the payment terms in the contract closely. Look over the details closely; if any of the fine print makes you nervous, contact the wedding DJ about any points of concern.

A cancellation policy is in place for both you and your wedding DJ; be concerned if the DJ’s cancellation policy covers them and not you. If your DJ has to cancel (a pretty rare occurrence), make sure you won’t be left without the payments you made (it is common practice for the deposit to be non-refundable).