While it's legal for same-sex couples to get married in the United States, some wedding vendors still tend to turn away queer clients. If you don't find LGBTQ-friendly wedding suppliers, you may end up stressed and unsatisfied.
Since 2000, Thomas Bui Lifestyle has helped queer couples plan a supportive, respectful, and loving wedding day by hiring inclusive vendors. With that said, I'm sharing tips from first-hand experiences on how to find LGBTQ-inclusive wedding vendors.
How to Find LGBTQ-Inclusive Wedding Vendors
To find LGBTQ-inclusive wedding vendors, check their online presence and portfolio to get an idea of their inclusivity. It also helps to hire a queer planner, attend LGBTQ wedding expos, and check LGBTQ wedding directions. Another way is to ask your current vendors or other queer couples for recommendations.
As a wedding planning specialist, I understand how crucial it is to find vendors who support and celebrate your love story. When planning an LGBTQ wedding, choose partners skilled in their craft, inclusive, and respectful of your unique needs and wishes. Let me share some valuable tips on how to find LGBTQ-friendly wedding suppliers.
A Quick Guide to Finding Queer-Inclusive Wedding Suppliers
Remember that the vendors you choose significantly impact the overall experience of your big day. With these tips, you can find and hire the best vendors for your wedding.
Hire an Inclusive Wedding Planner
One effective way to find the best vendors for a queer wedding is by hiring an inclusive planner. Inclusive wedding planners understand the unique needs and desires of LGBTQ couples, which makes them worth the money.
They also have built a network of inclusive vendors. This can make your search for LGBTQ-friendly vendors much easier and stress-free.
It's vital to hire professional wedding planners. In this way, you can communicate openly about your vision and preferences for your special day. They may already have recommendations for a variety of services, such as:
- Venues that have hosted LGBTQ+ weddings in the past
- Photographers and videographers who are skilled at capturing diverse couples
- Officiants who can perform LGBTQ+ ceremonies
Ask Your Current Vendors
I recommend asking your current vendors for recommendations on LGBTQ-inclusive wedding vendors. They are likely working in the industry and have networked with various professionals who share the same values as you do.
You can easily find vendors who fully support your wedding journey by leveraging their expertise and connections. Here are a few suggestions on how to approach your current vendors:
- Be transparent about your requirements and why it's important to you.
- Ask if they have colleagues or professional networks specializing in LGBTQ weddings.
- Request to see any past work or reviews from LGBTQ clients they have worked with.
Use Inclusive Terms When Researching Online
Whenever I work with new wedding vendors, I check if their portfolios, contracts, and online presence are inclusive. This helps me keep track of vendors that can cater to a diverse range of couples and celebrations.
Examine the vendor's website and social media channels for signs of inclusivity in language and imagery. A commitment to supporting the LGBTQ community might be evident in using gender-neutral language, diverse couples featured in photographs, pride flags, or other inclusive symbols.
Ask the Right Questions
When meeting with potential wedding vendors, asking the right questions is essential to ensure they are LGBTQ-inclusive. Some questions you could consider asking include:
- Have you worked with LGBTQ couples in the past?
- How do you provide a comfortable and inclusive experience for all couples?
- Do you have any examples or references from past LGBTQ weddings?
- How do you plan destination weddings in San Francisco for queer couples?
Attend LGBTQ Wedding Expos
I've attended and participated in several wedding expos over the years. This has given me great opportunities to connect with vendors with a proven inclusivity track record to cater to the LGBTQ community and their allies. Some benefits of attending LGBTQ wedding expos include:
- Have the opportunity to ask vendors questions and gauge their level of inclusivity.
- Receive special offers and discounts from vendors who participate in these expos.
- Network with other inclusive couples who may have recommendations for vendors they've used or venues they've visited.
Utilize LGBTQ Wedding Vendor Directories
When discussing vendor selection with couples, I recommend browsing online and offline LGBTQ wedding directories. These platforms are designed to connect couples with vendors supporting marriage equality and inclusivity.
Utilizing these directories makes it easy for me to find vendors who align with my values and understand the unique aspects of LGBTQ weddings.
Get Personal Referrals and Reviews From Queer Couples
A survey shows that 12% of engaged same-sex couples have experienced discrimination when planning their weddings. For instance, they wondered if unreturned phone calls were due to their sexual orientation.
Asking for referrals from other queer couples who have already gone through the wedding planning process is another one of my proven ways of finding queer-friendly wedding vendors. They can give you first-hand information on the professionalism, sensitivity, and expertise of the wedding vendors they've worked with.
Here are a few ways to get in touch with queer couples who have experience with vendors:
- Join LGBTQ wedding planning forums and Facebook groups.
- Reach out to your network of queer friends and acquaintances.
How Do LGBTQ Weddings Work?
LGBTQ weddings work like any other wedding, focusing on celebrating the love and commitment between two people. The main difference is that they are tailored to the specific needs and desires of LGBTQ couples, ensuring that their unique love story is celebrated and respected.
How Do I Inquire About Wedding Suppliers for a Queer Wedding?
When inquiring about wedding suppliers for a queer wedding, asking about their experience with LGBTQ events is essential. You can also check their portfolio to see if they have previously worked with diverse couples.
What Are Some Qualities to Look for in an LGBTQ-Friendly Wedding Vendor?
Some qualities to look for in an LGBTQ-friendly wedding vendor include using inclusive language on their website and in their communications. Additionally, supporting LGBTQ businesses and having a diverse portfolio can indicate their commitment to inclusivity.
When finding LGBTQ-inclusive wedding vendors, check signs of inclusivity in their portfolios and language. Prioritize inclusivity and find the right vendors during your wedding planning. Support businesses that uphold your values while ensuring you and your guests have a memorable and joyful experience.