As a bride, I LOVED going to bridal shows. Most shows designate you as a bride in someway which is just the best (a sticker, sash..etc), especially when you are first engaged. Plus shows are generally full of excitement over all things wedding which is right up my alley! Even if you aren’t gaga about planning your wedding right now, I still recommend checking out a show in your area. Keep reading for 5 reasons to go, 5 things to know, and how to find a show near you.
Top 5 reasons to check out a bridal show in your area:
- Free to attend – for almost every bridal show if you order tickets in advance you as the bride get in free and in many cases can get additional free tickets to bring along your mom or some bridesmaids…etc.
- Great place to meet local vendors face to face, everyone is all in one spot! You will get a much better feel for vendors by getting to interact with them in person.
- Easy to see TONS of ideas for all things wedding, again in person. Looking at things online just isn’t the same as getting to tangibly see wedding decorations come to life. Some bridal shows even have bridal fashion shows!
- You get to win prizes, free drinks…depending on the Bridal Show there is usually some kind of prizes or drinks that everyone gets which is a win in my book.
- Money savings – often you can score deals for local vendors through coupons or specials they are running at the bridal show. I won a free wedding veil & a coupon for $250 off a wedding dress at a show I attended.
Top 5 pieces of advice to know before you go:
1. Bring address labels – at every single vendor, in order to enter prize drawing, get deals, or more information they will want your information. Make a sheet or two of address labels with your name, address, email, phone #, and wedding date on them to avoid have to write this information out over and over again while at the show. Your hand will thank me later!
2. Don’t bring a big purse – typically you will pick up a bag (or 2+) as you move throughout the show, you may even get a swag bag when you arrive, you will have a better time if you aren’t hauling around your own large purse on top of goodies bags. Take something small and simple to hold your address labels, money, and phone. Your arms/back will also thank me later!
3. Scope out the show
Be prepared that there is A LOT going on at some of the bigger bridal expo shows. Shows usually have a list of vendors available ahead of time. Do a little online research before you hit the ground running. If you are looking for something specific, it can be helpful to know ahead of time what vendors you want to make sure to see at the show. Looking for a photographer? Great, than skip past all the DJ + flower vendors…etc.
Some of the bigger bridal expos are great because they have more vendors but that also means more people, so keep in mind that it may be easier to navigate the show with a close friend or two versus taking your whole bridal party.
Finally, some bridal shows feature “cake dives” or similar events as a chance to win big ticket items such as free honeymoon trips – if that is something your interested in, plan that out ahead of time and dress accordingly 🙂
4. Don’t bring your fiance – seriously, he will not enjoy traipsing around to all the different vendors! You will see other couples at shows and I promise you the boys always look out of place. Get your fiance more involved when you actually narrow down ideas post bridal show.
5. Take lots of pictures and brochures – remember the goal is to get ideas and meet vendors! You can delete and throw out whatever you don’t use after the fact, but don’t be shy about gathering as much information as you can while you are there to make the most of your time!
Find a show:
- Click here to find a bridal show in your area
- Also make sure to google for regional bridal shows – something like “bridal shows in (insert your state)” may turn up something fun!
- Search Bridal Expo boards on Pinterest (or bridal show)