Why Does Wedding Planning Take So Long?

Whether it's a destination wedding for LGBTQIA+ couples or an intimate gathering locally, it can feel like planning a wedding takes a massive chunk of your time. However, not knowing long it takes to plan a wedding can cause you to scramble for time and overlook important elements. 

Since 2000, Thomas Bui Lifestyle wedding planners have created unique and memorable planning experiences for couples. I will explain why wedding planning takes so long and give you a standard timeframe you can follow.

Why Does Wedding Planning Take So Long?

Wedding planning takes a long time because of the numerous elements and details it involves. Booking vendors, waiting for vendor availability, navigating your guests' schedules, and working on the level of customization can make planning take a long time. Unexpected challenges involving personal matters, budget, and DIY projects could also lengthen your planning timeline.

These elements come together to create a unique and memorable experience. However, they also contribute to the length of the planning process.

White flower arrangements installed on wooden arches and pathway towards the center aisle

Reasons Why Wedding Planning Takes So Long

Many queer couples wonder why planning an LGBTQIA+ wedding often takes a long time. From looking where can same-sex couples get married to coordinating with various vendors, each aspect of the planning can impact the overall timeline.

Multiple Detailed Aspects

After planning countless same-sex weddings over the years, I've seen how numerous intricate details that require attention contribute to a lengthy planning timeframe. Every aspect demands time and consideration, from selecting the perfect venue to choosing a caterer and a theme. 

Organizing and managing these details can take time, so wedding planning often takes longer than expected.

Involvement of Numerous Parties

Another factor contributing to the lengthy wedding planning process is the involvement of various parties. As a wedding planner with a vast network of vendors, I frequently collaborate with other vendors, suppliers, and family members to ensure the event runs smoothly. 

Coordinating schedules, meetings, and communications with everyone can be challenging and time-consuming, causing the planning process to extend.

Budget and Expenses

Establishing and maintaining a wedding budget is a key aspect of the planning process. Couples may spend significant time researching, comparing, and negotiating with vendors to stay within their desired budget. This can sometimes result in a lengthy timeline.

Waiting for Date, Venue, or Vendor Availability

Couples often have to wait for their preferred options to become available. As an example:

Notebook with written venue requirements with pens and green leaves on the side

DIY Projects

Incorporating do-it-yourself projects into the wedding adds time to the planning process. Creating handmade invitations, centerpieces, or favors can be a fun, personal touch, although these tasks take time to complete.

Work or Other Personal Responsibilities

Many LGBTQIA+ couples juggle their daily work schedules and personal responsibilities alongside wedding planning. This balancing act may slow the planning process, as there's limited time to organize their special day. 

Prioritizing tasks and setting realistic timelines can be particularly helpful during this time.

Unexpected Challenges

As a wedding planner, it's my job to solve unforeseen challenges during the wedding planning journey. These include vendor availability changes or last-minute guest list adjustments.

In some cases, same-sex couples find it challenging to find vendors that cater to the queer community. I guide couples in navigating these obstacles, which may add time to the overall process. 

Sample Wedding Planning Timeline

Several factors contribute to the length of the wedding planning process. We recommend hiring wedding planners to help because we can manage your expectations and reduce stress by preparing a timeline, making planners like us worth your money.

Chart showing a sample wedding planning timeline

10-12 Months

During the consultation, I often tell my clients to take their time in this stage of the planning timeline, as it lays the foundation for future decisions. It takes so long to plan a wedding because you need ample time to work on each of these tasks:

8-10 Months

At this point in the timeline, here's what you should do:

6-8 Months

While six to eight months seem long, this timeline is enough to:

Long tables filled with flower arrangements and cutleries with a big projector installed at the top of the venue wall

4-6 Months

Half a year may sound long for others. However, this can sometimes be a crunch time to finalize these essential details:

2-4 Months

As the big day approaches, there are still many tasks to complete, such as:

1-2 Months

In the final weeks leading up to your wedding, make sure everything is in place and ready to go. You should:

Related Questions

How Long Should I Realistically Expect to Spend on Planning a Wedding?

Couples can expect to spend 6 to 18 months planning a wedding. However, this can vary depending on your personal preferences and the complexity of your event.

What Are the Most Time Consuming Aspects of Planning a Wedding?

Searching for the perfect venue is likely the most time consuming task during wedding planning. You'll need to visit multiple locations, compare pricing, and ensure the venue can accommodate your guest list and desired aesthetic. Likewise, you'll have to research and meet with various professionals to ensure they align with your vision and budget. 

How Long Is Too Long to Plan a Wedding?

While there's no definitive answer to how long is too long to plan a wedding, spending around two years can be too much. However, waiting too long to plan your wedding to secure your desired venue or vendors, as they may already be booked on your desired date.


The process of planning a wedding takes considerable time and effort.  While vendor selection, personal matters, and budget constraints can affect your timeframe, planning systematically and efficiently can save you time. Thomas Bui Lifestyle wedding planners can significantly help streamline the wedding planning process, especially for LGBTQIA+ weddings.