You can see if they have package deals or discounts going on but ive never heard of anyone talking them down from prices search around different people have different prices and things they want paid for like gas milage and dinner etc ...shop around
We negotiated with our venue on our ceremony site fee and food and beverage minimum. They were also able to substitute items that were already supplied by another vendor (e.g. votive candles that my florist already provided).
I negotiated everything! Don't let anyone tell you that you can't. Just do your research and go prepared. When I went to my very first venue tour, the manager taught me the art of negotiating and I took her advice and saved hundreds of dollars now!
Not necessarily "negotiating," but daughter asked about "discounts" and that really paid off. Her venue had a $5000 "off-season discount" (So Cal in January, so not a big risk) and her photographer offered discounts for paying in full at time of booking & paying by cash/check rather than credit card. Combined, those saved her $1300 (however, she VERY carefully vetted him so she had no concerns about giving him the full payment a year in advance). Other savings came from doing her homework and comparison shopping. She didn't ask for discounts, but she was honest with vendors about her budget and asked about ways to save/stay within budget.
No, because they are professionals and I wanted to pay them accordingly. Our musician at the reception (who was a friend from high school but a professional recording artist) usually charges $500 for an event (playing from noon-ish till 3 at our lunch reception) but he told us he would charge $350. We never asked for that, and my hubby was so impressed with him I think he tipped him enough where he probably paid him the full $500!!!
I could see negotiating with a hotel for room rental but people who are self employed as musicians, officiants, etc - no.
Yes! You can negotiate everything! It can never hurt to ASK. To book my venue, I emailed them and said, "My budget is $XXXX for venue, catering, and drink options -- can we consider you for our venue?" and our hotel said YES where others said NO. We were willing to be flexible, though, so that helped -- we went with a taco buffet, which wasn't offered on their regular menu, we're doing very limited drinks, and we're getting married off season. I think being upfront with your budget really helps sift out vendors pretty quickly.
We negotiated to change things in our venue contract, such as the minimum spend amount for booze, which we would have been responsible for. We had them remove that. Also, had them remove the per person charge for extra people staying in rooms that we blocked off. That’s about it so far.
We didn't negotiate, mostly since our vendors were booking out 1 year + in advance so they didn't need to negotiate. I'd give people like the florist & caterer a max budget and they would work around it.