Having a Wedding Toastmaster on your big day is such a value, but it’s important to pick the right one. We asked the English Toastmaster Garry Smith on what are the best questions to ask before booking…
1. Why should I have a Toastmaster?
“You’ve probably spent large sums of money on your wedding and if you’ve done all the planning yourself, you will want to make sure that everything happens in the way and style that you’d hoped,” says Garry. “A Toastmaster is your guarantee that this is the case, having spent time with him/her to discuss your specific requirements.”
2. When should I book?
Try and book at least 12 months in advance or even as soon as you have chosen your venue. Those who provide a skilled service tend to be in high demand. You will be disappointed in a Toastmaster who isn’t going to give you first class attention.”
3. Some Toastmasters who give the impression that it’s all about them on the day. Why?
“During a wedding day, a Toastmaster should always focus his or her attention on the bride and bridegroom. They’re the ones who have done the planning and made all the decisions. They have entrusted the proceedings into the hands of the Toastmaster who is there to ensure that everything runs to plan.”
4. What is the cost?
The average Toastmaster costs from £300 – £400 roughly.
“Each occasion is subtly different and sometimes couples have very unusual requests. Make sure the Toastmaster fully understands your expectations. Once you’ve had the opportunity to discuss your plans, either in person or on the telephone, he or she should be happy to supply a written quotation.”
5. How do we choose the right Toastmaster?
“Always try and meet your Toastmaster before you book. If a meeting is not feasible, speak at length with him/her by telephone and ask to see any written testimonials. You have to feel comfortable with them as a person and likewise, they will want to understand all your requirements and feel comfortable with you.”
6. We like the idea of having a Toastmaster but we don’t want our day too ‘formal’. Is that something we can expect?
“Any professionally trained and experienced Toastmaster should be able to adjust their style to your requirements. Most couples ask for a relaxed day with a little bit of formality at key moments such as the announcements, the speeches or toasts and the cake cutting.”
7. We went to a wedding where the Toastmaster at the venue was wearing a suit. What do you wear?
“A venue will usually have the duty manager or other member of staff to perform the role of Master of Ceremonies and so their attire will be whatever the venue staff dress code is.”
“In most cases, a professional Toastmaster will wear the full ceremonial uniform, which will always be the red tailcoat (known as a Hunting Pink), starched white shirt, waistcoat and bow tie, dress trousers and highly polished black shoes.”
8. What time should we expect the Toastmaster to start and finish?
“There are some who will only attend the wedding reception, others will attend the civil ceremony too. However, one that attends the Church service as well as throughout the whole day through until the end of the first dance will usually charge slightly more, but will undoubtedly give you a better level of service. After this, the DJ or band then takes over for the rest of the party.”
9. Our venue said they have a Toastmaster so why do we need the added expense?
“Often that role is fulfilled by the duty manager or other member of staff and usually as Master of Ceremonies. Do remember they are there as a member of staff at the venue so their attention may not necessarily be with you all of the time as they have other things to think about during the course of the day.”
10. Wouldn’t it be easier for me to get a friend to hire a uniform and be Master of Ceremonies?
“Yes it would, however, remember you only get one chance for a perfect day, so are you prepared to take the chance risk that everything will run specifically to your plan? Certainly those Toastmasters who belong to a recognised organisation have received formal training and will also be covered by appropriate liability insurance too.”
We would like to thank Garry for the invaluable information he has shared with UKbride, and would like to direct you through to his supplier page.