preparing for the day of your dreams, Better Business Bureau serving Eastern
North Carolina advises brides to proceed with caution when it comes to buying a
wedding dress, choosing a photographer and selecting a wedding planner. Doing
your research and asking for referrals will help make your special day go as
smoothly as possible.
the past year, BBB received more than 970 complaints against wedding-related
services nationwide. Services like wedding planners, DJs, photographers and
bridal shops all made the list. Many of the complaints were centered on a company’s
unwillingness to honor cancellation and refund policies after a deposit had
From choosing a florist to picking out the perfect wedding
gown, more and more soon-to-be brides are opting for online retailers. While some
venues have the brides’ best interest at heart, it is important to recognize
the red flags before shelling out the cash.
“With today’s wedding averaging around more than $28,000, you
want to make sure you get everything you paid for,” said
Toby Barfield, president and CEO of BBB serving Eastern
North Carolina. “Before securing your wedding
services and paying any upfront fees, it is important to do your research.”
BBB recommends that couples consider the following when planning
for their special day:
Research all online vendors. When choosing to go with an
online retailer for your wedding services or products, start with a trusted Web
site rather than shopping with a search engine. Search results can often lead
you to unscrupulous Web sites or phishing scams. Also, look for the BBB seal
and other widely-recognized “trustmarks” on retail Web sites. Click on the
seals to confirm that they are valid. Confirm that your online purchase is
secure by looking for the “s” after “http” in the URL or the lock symbol in the
lower right-hand corner of the screen. Always check out a company at bbb.org
before doing business with them.
Review all terms and conditions. Whether
you are dealing with a company online or in-person, review all terms and
conditions carefully. What is the company’s refund and exchange policy? What is
their cancellation policy? Be sure you understand your rights as a consumer
before doing business with a company.
Keep documentation of your order. For online orders, save a copy of
the confirmation page or e-mails confirming the order until you receive the
item or service and are satisfied. If you are dealing with a company in-person,
be sure to get all details in writing, including specific dates, products, prices,
cancellation and deposit policies, and signatures from both parties.
Pay with a credit card. Credit cards offer consumers the
added protection of disputing any charge over $50 within 60 days of the
purchase. Most established businesses accept major credit cards, so use them
Consider purchasing wedding
insurance. Wedding insurance can cover a range of prospective
problems including vendor no-shows, cancellations, inclement weather, military
deployment, medical emergencies, travel delays and more. Many policies start at
$200 and can potentially save you thousands of dollars.
information, visit bbb.org.