Almost 2 million couples get engaged every single year. The average couple gets married 12 to 18 months after that.

The may seem like a lot of time to plan a wedding. But it goes fast, and there’s a lot to figure out to ensure your big day goes off without a hitch.

Of course, you want to savor the blissful feeling of being newly engaged. But after a few days or weeks, it’s time to make a plan. 

Wondering what to do after getting engaged? Keep reading below to discover the most important steps for a stress-free season of wedding planning. 

Take Engagement Photos

First and foremost, you need to take engagement photos. Many couples skip this, and they always regret it later on.

Of course, they plan to have photos taken on their wedding day. But hiring an engagement photographer to take beautiful romantic photos shortly after getting engaged to be married is just as important.

You’ll want to remember the feeling of being engaged because it’s very different from marriage. This is especially important if you plan to have a long engagement (a year or more). Plus, you’ll get to use these photos when you announce your engagement or send wedding invitations. 

What to Do After Getting Engaged; Choose a Date

The first big decision you need to make is what day your wedding will occur. It’s a hard decision to make, and it may feel random at first.

First off, you’ll want to choose the season. In most of the US, the summer and fall are the busiest wedding season. If you want to get married during these seasons, you may struggle to get your preferred wedding location.

If you’re willing to get married in the winter or spring, you might have the freedom to choose any venue you want. Once you narrow down the season, you can choose the month that feels best. 

Maybe you want to avoid August, since many of your family members have birthdays, and families are getting ready for the new school year. So maybe September will be easier for you. 

Once you choose a month, you’ll probably select a Friday or Saturday for your wedding date. The exact date will likely depend on the venue you’d like to choose, and what their availability is. 

Lock In a Location

Once you have an idea of when you’re getting married, it’s time to lock in a venue. This can be hard, especially if you want to get married in the high season, or in popular wedding cities. 

The best venues get booked up at least a year in advance, with many getting bookings 2 years in advance. You’ll need to plan ahead if you want the perfect location. 

Start making calls and see what dates are available. Once something comes up, book the date immediately so that you at least have something. If you need to change it later on, you can likely do this. 

Book Your Most Important Wedding Vendors First

The venue is the most important thing to book early. But there are a few other wedding vendors to lock in as early as you can.

One of the most important is a photographer. Just like venues, the best photographers get booked up at least a year in advance. If you want someone who is known for a specific style of wedding photography, you’re going to need to book as early as you can. 

If you plan to do wedding videography, you can book that person early too. 

If you want to hire a wedding planner, that’s a good thing to book early on, as it will make every other step as easy as possible for you. 

Wedding officiants also tend to have busy schedules, so lock this in early as well. A DJ and a band are also necessary to hire soon, as they can only do one wedding at a time, unlike bakers and florists. 

Most other vendors don’t need to be booked right away. Caterers often have the staff available for many weddings in one weekend. Likewise, cake bakers, florists, limo providers, and other vendors don’t require you to rush. 

Send Invitations

With a date and location locked in, you are ready to send out wedding invitations. The sooner you do this, the better. When it comes to weddings, your friends and family need to have this on their calendar early to ensure they don’t plan anything else during that time.

Enjoy Your Engagement

Once the invitations go out, you can breathe a little bit. There’s still some planning to do, but it should be a lot less stressful.

While you plan the rest of your wedding, honeymoon, and marriage that follows, don’t forget to savor your engagement. It’s an important season of life that you’ll never get to live through again.

A Day to Remember

Now that you know what to do after getting engaged, you can move forward in this season of life with confidence and a game plan. You know which steps to take first, and which ones don’t need to do until later on.

With enough preparation, your wedding day is going to be one of a kind. 

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