Updated: Jan 24
Are you ready to start your wedding dress shopping dress journey? Maybe you are wondering why some wedding dress shops charge for appointments whilst some are free?
When starting your research online for bridal boutiques that you would like to visit you may have seen some require appointments to try on wedding gowns and some you can walk in at any time. You may notice that some have a small fee to make an appointment to start your journey and try wedding dresses on. This might come as a shock to some brides and something to factor in to your wedding planning.
As a bridal boutique we are going to talk about why some bridal shops may charge a small fee for wedding dress appointments and what this means for brides searching for their dream wedding gown. Wedding Belles Love want all brides to be aware of all costs when wedding dress shopping, including any surprise fees that might accrue. Many bridal boutiques are run by small business owners, like ourselves, and each boutique will have its own policies in place, this will differ from shop to shop.
Some bridal shops might charge for appointments, and many bridal shops are appointment only. There are still a small number of bridal shops who are open for walk-ins, but are dramatically decreasing, especially since the pandemic.
By being appointment only, a bridal shop will be fully staffed and prepared for each bride who walks through the door down to the finishing touches. When you have an appointment scheduled, the bridal stylist will be expecting you and ready to give you the up most best possible experience.
Don't Miss Your Appointment
As bridal stylists we understand that brides sometimes miss their appointments, we know that sometimes schedules change and life happens. If you have a bridal appointment that you have booked that you can no longer make, please let us know and call or email the bridal shop to cancel your appointment as on busy days wedding dress shops often have a waiting list ad we can offer the appointment to another bride on the hunt for their dream dress. Often brides have wedding dress appointments booked and when they don't attend they don't always realise that their appointment is with a small business that have been preparing for their appointment, this leaves the wedding dress shop in an unknowing situation, as they could of offered the appointment to another bride. Some bridal shops are booked in advanced especially weekend slots, so when a bride doesn't show up it means that another bride could miss out on finding their chance to find their dream wedding dress. Also when there are no shows it is not only unfair to other brides but to the bridal store staff also. It can become very difficult for these small businesses to continue to thrive if brides book and then do not show.
Charges Are Not About Overheads
Each Bridal shop will have it's own policy about charging for appointments, and we want you to know its not a way for wedding dress shops to make money, they are not going to make enough money to pay their staff, or their bills based on this small reservation fee. The small fee is in place is mainly to make sure that the brides are serious about coming into the shop and shop for their dream wedding dress. This fee also a tool that bridal shops use to remind their future brides to show up for their appointments. Knowing the bride has paid this small fee and are serious about their appointment will ensure that the bridal shop is fully staffed, ready to greet you and are ready for your appointment and if you don't show up maybe that small fee might cover a percentage of the bridal stylist who was waiting to greet you to help you find your wedding dress. Many bridal stores put these charges in place because of the behavior of past brides.
Do What's Best For You
Most Wedding dress shops are charging for appointments because they want you to take the appointment seriously, They want you to show up, They want you to attend your appointment as there calendars are booked out, so they have paid staff to meet you that may not of needed that day.
If you don't feel comfortable paying this small fee that is okay as well its a decision that each bride will make for themselves, there will be wedding dress shops who don't charge for appointments, do what you feel is best for your wedding dress journey.
Small Business Owners
Many bridal shops are owned by women and are small businesses, we try to encourage brides to shop local and support a local bridal boutique rather then an outlet. It certainly costs a lot of money to run a bridal boutique, to have the latest wedding dress collections and to have it fully trained staffed to help brides in their search for their dream wedding gown, So be mindful when booking your wedding dress appointment. Your small fee will ensure the fully trained staff will give you the best possible experience as soon as you enter the bridal shop.