The thought of having security at a wedding probably conjures up images of big celebrity nuptials, with burly men in sunglasses and dark suits accosting paparazzi trying to sell pictures of the newlyweds. But wedding security is a very real service that many everyday couples choose to have at their own weddings, too.
Nobody likes to think that things might go wrong on their wedding day, or wants to consider that they might need some help evicting rowdy or unpleasant guests. But depending on what kind of wedding you’re having (and who you’re inviting), there are many legitimate reasons you might consider hiring security. After all, making sure that all of your guests have an enjoyable and safe time is part of the responsibility of planning a wedding celebration.
In this guide, we’ll talk you through the various reasons why some couples choose to hire security for their wedding day. We’ll also discuss what you should look for when choosing your wedding security company.
What Is Wedding Security?
Wedding security is a service that you might consider hiring along with all of your other wedding suppliers (such as the caterer, florist, and baker). The job of a wedding security company is to provide one or more security guards – like bouncers at a nightclub – whose job it is to help you and your guests stay safe, and have a good time.
A wedding security guard’s job may involve the following duties, along with others:
1) Denying entry to “wedding crashers” – people who aren’t on the guest list, but turned up anyway (for example, an ex-boyfriend that just won’t leave you alone)
2) Turning away guests that received an invitation but have turned up wearing inappropriate clothing (such as your mother-in-law turning up in a white wedding gown – yes, this kind of thing happens surprisingly often!)
3) Removing guests that are behaving inappropriately – for example, acting drunk and disorderly, vandalising the venue, starting arguments or fighting with other guests
4) Patrolling the venue’s car park to keep guests’ cars safe from thieves
5) Watching the gift table to prevent any of your wedding gifts from being stolen
6) Administering CPR or first aid and calling the emergency services if any of your guests become ill or injured
Of course, if you’re lucky, your security guard won’t have to do anything at all, because you’ll have a stress-free wedding with absolutely no drama. But if you want to be on the safe side, it’s worth hiring security just in case.
Should You Hire Security for Your Wedding?
There are many reasons that couples may decide to hire a security guard for their wedding. Here are just a few of the situations when hiring an extra set or two of eyes and ears can be beneficial:
You're Having a Destination Wedding
Having your wedding in a foreign country can be exotic and exhilarating. Still, it also carries an added risk of being in a strange place with new customs and laws. Additionally, your destination may be beautiful but not the safest area in the world. So when traveling abroad to get married, particularly to a place you’ve never been before, hiring security can help give you some peace of mind.
You're Having an Elaborate Wedding
From the cake to the flowers and decorations, everything about your wedding is important - even if you're not planning on inviting a celebrity couple for the reception! Even simple weddings can be attacked and endangered by party crashers.
Not only can uninvited guests charge the bar, but they could also pose as family members to garner gifts or play other unpleasant pranks on you and your wedding party. For this reason, many brides decide to hire security guards for their weddings as an extra precaution against problems caused by gate-crashers.
You Have Problem Family Members
Every family has that one relative who might have a bit too much to drink and get a little too boisterous, or maybe even aggressive. If you have guests who are a little unpredictable, or have a tendency to start arguments or behave inappropriately while drunk, then having security at your wedding will provide a little extra protection and reassurance that your guests will be safe.
You're Having a Wedding With High Attendance
Some weddings may end up attracting such large numbers of guests that security might be required. It’s sad but true that the more guests a wedding has, the higher the likelihood that something will go wrong – such as a guest getting a little too drunk and vandalising the place, or a fight breaking out between guests. This is, obviously, far less likely if you’re only having a tiny wedding with close family.
You Have Family Members That Don't Get Along
Family disagreements have a way of flaring up at special events, especially when the alcohol may be flowing. If Uncle Dave and Uncle Joe don't get along, there's a good chance your wedding might be spoiled if things get out of hand.
If you're worried about family drama spilling over into your special day, then hiring security guards at your wedding is a good way to be proactive about keeping control of the situation. And the sight of security at your celebration will go a long way in making sure everyone stays civil throughout the ceremony.
The Venue Requires It
Some venues explicitly state in their wedding contracts that you’re required to hire security, so you won’t have an option if this is the case. This may only apply to weddings of a certain size, though, so be sure to check with venue staff if you’re not sure.
Depending on your wedding venue, they may even offer security themselves. While you should take this advice into account, you might also want to weigh additional options - such as hiring an independent company and using their resources instead of those provided by your venue.
You Have Issues with an Ex
If you still have problems with your ex-spouse, then it might be a good idea to hire security guards for your wedding. For example, if there's been a history of violence between the two of you (or maybe even against another family member) or your ex is known for being an alcoholic who can't hold their liquor, then it's in your best interest to hire security guards.
Even if you’ve not invited them, they may try to “crash” your wedding (turn up uninvited) – and if you don’t have security, it’ll be up to you to get rid of them.
You Want More Peace of Mind
Of course, the most fundamental reason for hiring wedding security is to have more peace of mind. Even if none of the above factors apply to you, you may still wish to hire security just in case. It’ll ensure that you enjoy every moment of your special day without having to worry about possible problems caused by uninvited or rowdy guests.
What to Look For in a Wedding Security Company
When you're considering hiring wedding security, it's essential to talk to several companies and learn everything you can about what they offer before making your final decision. Here are some tips for what to look for and what considerations go into choosing a security company.
1) Budget. Calculating how much you can afford to pay per hour will be an important factor in deciding which company to hire.
2) Services provided. A good company will give you lots of information about the duties they perform, making it easier for you to determine which provider is best for your needs and budget.
3) The guards’ training and experience. For example, does every guard have an up-to-date SIA (Security Industry Authority) license? Are the guards first-aid trained – can they perform CPR and the Heimlich manoeuvre, for example? How long has each guard been working and how many weddings have they attended before?
Once you narrow down your list of possible candidates, you’ll need to set up an interview with each one and learn how their company works.
In conclusion, hiring wedding security isn’t strictly necessary, but it may be a good decision if you're worried about problems arising during your special day. It’s all about weighing your options and considering what's best for you.
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