Hey everyone! So, I am in the planning process right now. I am having mixed feelings about hiring a Dj. Is it worth spending 1,000$ Or more on a DJ to play music at my wedding. Let me know your thoughts?
I think this is totally up to you and how you want the flow of your reception to be. To save money we hired a DJ that does it as side job just to make extra cash on the weekends. He's charging us $300. He's not a well known DJ in our area but he does a really good job getting a party going.
I made a post about this very subject a few days ago--part of my Rockstar mission! Here's what I had to say then. It hasn't changed.
I know that hiring a DJ for your wedding can be expensive. It depends a lot on your area, but I've seen both lower priced, and higher priced DJs in a lot of different areas. So, maybe it depends on their experience level. I know here in CA, DJs are a big thing, so there are a lot of companies to choose from (some big, some small), and a wide range of pricing options. Having said that, I truly believe the old saying that "you get what you pay for."
I've been to weddings with and without DJs. I've seen live bands, string quartets, and even a harpist. Then there are the weddings where they decide (for whatever reason) not to hire a DJ or any sort of band, and use a playlist instead. What I have found (mostly) is that the weddings without a DJ are not as fun as the ones with a DJ.
The last DJ-less wedding I attended was just last year. They were using a playlist and some borrowed speakers. They had someone to oversee it, in case anything went wrong, the music would be tended to. Unfortunately, the person the couple "hired" to oversee the music didn't really know what he was doing. There were large gaps of time where there was no music at all. The poor kid would get the music going, only to have it shut off after only one song. There was nobody to make announcements, and it left the reception feeling very unorganized. A lot of guests were milling around the banquet room not sure where to go, where to find drinks, food, and should we dance? Went to the bar to be told they weren't serving drinks. It turns out that all the food was BBQ being served outside--they had tables inside and outside to sit and eat. Drinks out there too. But nobody announced the food was outside, so when you enter the space, you had to go all the way to the back, around the corner past the bar, and exit a door to the outside patio.
My point is that much of the confusion could have been avoided if there had been a DJ. One of the perks I like best about an experienced DJ is the fact that he/she can also act as MC for your event. Ours will make all of the announcements, from the start of cocktail hour, all the way to the end of the night where he will announce the last dance of the evening. He will keep us on track for the special dances, cake cutting, bouquet toss, etc. It's not always about the music, even though that is what the DJ is for. They can also help keep an event with a lot of moving parts (wedding) on track, and give all of your guests a great evening!!
Going DJless can lead to a lot of problems, as people mentioned above. The last wedding I went to without a DJ had major problems with the speakers and playlist - the songs kept cutting in and out, and sometimes they'd try to play songs that didn't work at all. People danced when the music was on but a lot of people left early! Try to find a DJ that's a little cheaper but I'd really caution against going with no DJ at all. Do you want to risk having the music not work for your first dance?