If you're looking to hire a wedding DJ, in Austin, Central Texas, or anywhere, you want to know the average cost to hire a DJ for your wedding, quinceanera, party of event. Let's be honest, price does matter! The surprising thing is, hardly any DJ and photo booth companies are still not upfront about their prices. We wrote this very popular article, 2 years ago, and it still remains true. (This article has received over 15,000 views).
Don't believe me? Stop reading, here, and do a quick search in Google, Bing, or whichever search engine you prefer, and search: "Wedding DJ Austin, DJ for weddings, photo booth, or photography booth," or whatever terms you prefer, and look for pricing. You will be looking for a while, so come back when you're ready, we'll be here. :)
Why Can't They Tell You Their Prices?
So let's discuss this a little further. First of all, why are DJ and photo booth companies so afraid to be upfront about their pricing? Why can't they be upfront with their customers? It's not like they can avoid telling you the price. You're most certainly going to ask, and they're eventually going to have to tell you.
Well, to be honest, there's a lot of literature out there that tells DJ and photo booth companies that they must "sell their customers on their value, first, so that the price doesn't scare them away." Here's a shocker: Price may scare customers away, anyway, even after hearing the long sales pitch.
The bottom line is, price does matter to nearly every customer, except for the wealthy customers and the top 1% of course. So let's answer this price question.For us, we list our starting prices and cannot list prices for everything, since it really varies, depending on the customer's needs, location of the event, size of the venue, number of people attending, how many sound systems we need to bring, lighting needs, etc. We cannot speak for all companies, but I can certainly give you a range of pricing, based on our most current research.
Price Ranges For Wedding/Event DJs
First, you can start at the lower end. You can go on Craigslist and find hundreds (literally) of DJs advertising their services on there. You'll find a lot of brand new DJs, offering low prices, simply because they want to gain experience. Well, I don't think you want a new DJ to learn on the job, at your wedding or event. Learning means, possibly making mistakes, so no thanks. There are numerous DJs on there, using various marketing techniques, such as "Voted #1 in Austin, or Texas," or "super cheap DJ services" but you have to ask, based on which poll were you voted #1? "Super cheap" ummm... I don't know about you, but I always question the value of anything cheap. The truth is, you have to do your own research on the companies or individuals you want to hire.
Next, you can simply take the time to draft an email, and email each company, individually, by filling out their contact forms, but, beware, you'll be bombarded with emails, calls, and text messages, all wanting your business. So be prepared for that. We've gotten feedback from many of our clients about this. It's surprising how high-pressure many of these sales staff can be. I presume they either get a commission, or will be the actual DJ at your event, so they really want your business. So when you send your emails, remember, it's like going to a car dealership, so be prepared. (Almost nobody likes to go to a car dealership).
Lastly, you can also go on wedding professionals sites, such as The Knot, Wedding Wire, or Wedding.com, and you'll be able to email several DJ companies at once. This also gives you a chance to see pricing info, or at least a range, though still, many companies refuse to list their price on these sites, too, surprisingly. (Why are they hiding?)
The good thing about these sites is that they allow customers to leave reviews, so this will help you learn more about the DJ or photo booth company you're researching. This is probably your best bet. Companies that advertise on these sites, are companies that are the busiest, which means they have lots of experience. These sites are not cheap to advertise on (yes, we advertise on them, so we know how much it costs), so chances are, these companies will do their best to do a great job, since their reputation matters. It's a very competitive business, everywhere! There are hundreds, if not thousands of DJs in the Austin area, and more throughout the central Texas area.
So here's the bottom line: The prices can really vary in the Austin and Central Texas area. They can be as cheap as $200 for your entire wedding, quinceanera, or event, and higher, up to $4000 or more, for your event! The key is to find out what's included with your service.
The picture, above, is from the most recent research for wedding costs in downtown Austin, Texas. It lists the average price that most couples pay as between $568 - $946. It also lists the price you'll pay for well experienced professionals, as $1514 or more. We actually are well experienced professionals and charge a less than this, for our average wedding! Wow, what a great deal! :)
However, this does not give details about how many hours, or what's included with the service. If you are not having a wedding in the Austin area, you can easily find out how much the average cost is in your area, by simply visiting the cost of wedding website. Just put in your zip code and you'll see all the information for your area!
The second picture, is a little more accurate, as it takes into account the number of guests at your wedding; however, again, it does not state the number of hours or what is included for this price. Not all DJ companies will charge based on the number of guests you have, but it does make a difference. DJ companies need to know the number of people and the size of the venue, in order to know what equipment is right for the best sound at your venue. There's a big difference between a wedding for 50 people, versus 300 people, in terms of what DJs will need to bring. Again, keep in mind, the above numbers are the "average" and you'll find some companies that charge more, and others that charge less.
Questions to Ask Your Wedding/Event DJ
Lastly, remember, you're interviewing them, so feel free to ask "Why should we hire you, versus the others?" Hint: Their answer should not be based on all their great equipment. Most people don't know the difference between DJ equipment brands, so this is irrelevant.
Questions to Ask Your Photo Booth Company
Overall, remember, you are in control of how much you spend for your event, not the DJ or photo booth company. Find out what the value is, for your money. What does the $4000 company do differently, than the $200 company, or the $1000 company? Do your research and pick the company that best suits your needs! Good luck, and as always, email us for questions. We're always happy to help everyone, whether they're a customer or not! :)
Be sure to check out our previous article on how much wedding DJs cost 2017/2018.
-Austin's Best DJs & Photo Booths
The wedding timeline is a very critical component of your big day. Take the time to ensure that your timeline is filled out, completely. Not sticking to the timeline can mean a very unorganized, unpleasant experience for you and your guests. We aren’t suggesting that you must stick to the timeline, down to the exact minute, but use it as a general guide, to ensure your wedding flows smoothly.
Below, are some suggestions for the amount of time things will take, which are estimates, based on our experience of doing hundreds of weddings, each year, in the Austin and central Texas area. We hope you find this helpful!
Prelude – 15-30 minutes. Guests arrive and find seating. Allow 30 minutes (ore more) before the ceremony start time. Fifteen to thirty minutes is ideal, but always plan for people to arrive late.
Ceremony: 20-30 minutes. Most ceremonies are between 15 – 30 minutes, depending upon what is happening. Keep in mind that some church ceremonies can take longer.
Cocktail Hour: One hour, or slightly more, if needed. This time will be for your guests to enjoy appetizers and drinks, while the bridal party and families take pictures. Save photos of very large groups for the reception, allowing the DJ/MC to announce for everyone to gather for the photos. This is much more efficient than trying to track down everyone, during the cocktail hour.
Reception: 2-4 hours. How long your reception/dance lasts, depends on how long you booked your DJ/band for.
Introduction: 5-15 minutes. Wedding party, bride and groom introduction. Some couples introduced their bridal party, some do not. 5 minutes if only bride and groom introduction, more if wedding party is being introduced.
Welcome toast: 5-7 minutes. Given by the father of the bride or by the bride and groom.
Blessing: 2-5 minutes (if applicable).
Dinner: 1-2 hours for dinner, depending on the number of guests. 50-75 guests can usually eat in an hour. More than 75-150 guests will need about 1.5 hours, depending on whether your dinner is plated or buffet style. Plated always takes longer. More than 150 guests usually need 2 hours or more.
Toasts: 10 – 15 minutes, toward the end of dinner works best, since all your guests will still be present. Ladies first! Start with the maid of honor, followed by the best man, then parents, and anyone else.
Toasts: 5-10 minutes. The bride and groom can give a toast, thank their guests for coming, etc.
First dance: 3-5 minutes. The most common timing is immediately after the bride and groom enter the reception, but you can also do your first dance following the conclusion of dinner or right after cake/dessert.
Father/daughter dance: 3-5 minutes. Immediately following the first dance.
Mother/son dance: 3-5 minutes. Immediately following the father/daughter dance. Sometimes, this dance is shared with the father/daughter dance.
Guests invited to dance: Open up the dance floor, and get the party started!
Cake cutting: 10-15 minutes. Some couples choose to cut the cake right after dinner, which ensures everyone is present. Other couples choose to cut the cake halfway through the night. We recommend earlier. The bride and groom should cut one slice of cake, take pictures, and move on. The staff or designated person should then cut the rest of the cake. The DJ can announce when the cake is ready to be served.
Bouquet and garter tosses: 10-15 minutes. Right after the cake cutting. Allow time for your guests to come to the dance floor, for both moments.
Send-off: 15 minutes. If you're doing a sparkler farewell, for example, have guests start lining up about 10 – 15 minutes before you plan to exit.
We hope these tips help you on your wedding day. Congratulations and we hope you have a great, fun, memorable wedding day! As always, email us for questions and we'll be happy to help, even if you're not our client!
- Austin's Best DJs & Photo Booths
With our DJ and photo booth business, we provide services for weddings, parties, quinceaneras and corporate events every weekend, all year long in the Austin and Central Texas area. As technology has evolved, more and more, we're getting couples asking us if they can simply email us a link to their Spotify playlist, or a picture of their iTunes playlist, to use at their event. While this is quite helpful, we suggest that you keep in mind that we can only play about 15-20 songs per hour. Don't forget that the key moments, such as: first dance, father/daughter and mother/son dances, cake cutting, garter/bouquet toss, and other moments, can also take an additional 30-45 minutes. So if your wedding, quinceanera, party or event is 5 hours, including ceremony, cocktail hour, and dinner, this only leaves about 2.5 hours for the key moments and dance, assuming everything goes according to schedule. So at most, make your playlist about 50 songs.
Another tip to keep in mind when making your playlist is to minimize the number of ballads or slow songs you play. If you have a few must-play slow songs, the DJ will most likely play them during dinner or cocktail hour, unless you specifically ask to play them during the dance. With only 2-2.5 hours of dance time, we do our best to keep the party fun and energetic! Sure, we may play a slow song or two, but no more than that, unless you ask us to. Also, don't forget that many people often request songs, so be sure to let the DJ know whether it is okay to take requests. Keep in mind, everyone has different musical tastes!
If you absolutely want everything that's on your Spotify (or any) playlist played, keep in mind that DJs play songs in "sets." This means that we group songs together by tempo and genre. The music just flows better this way. It sounds much better to have genres and tempos played together, versus playing a faster tempo dance song, then a slow song, then a country song, then a hip hop song, right after each other. So if you've ever wondered why DJs play 2-3 Country (or any genre) songs in a row, this is why. So if you give us a playlist, keep in mind that the order may change, depending on the genre and tempo of the songs.
If you simply want the DJ to play your Spotify playlist exactly as it is, regardless of tempo or genre, this can be done, but keep in mind that it may not sound great to be switching up music and tempos so often. If this is what you want, you could easily just rent a sound system and let your playlist play, which would save you some money. This isn't ideal, but it's possible. :)
We hope these tips have been helpful. As always, please contact us if you have any additional questions and we're always happy to help!
-Austin's Best DJs Team
If you're currently planning to have a wedding in the Austin or central Texas area, then you have already realized that the expenses can add up, fast! Chances are, you're using the internet to do your research, and you should certainly start by doing just that. We included the above infographic to show you the average cost of a wedding in Austin, Texas. The cost of your wedding can vary, depending on your needs and your budget. So let's talk more about our specialty, wedding DJ and photo booth services.
As you may have already noticed, the price for wedding entertainment can really vary, depending upon where you're looking. In general, bands are more expensive than DJs. As you have seen, however, some DJs/DJ companies can charge just as much as bands. Our advice is simple, do your research. Check out reputable sites, such as The Knot or Wedding Wire, and even Facebook, for reviews and to see what actual customers are saying about the DJ and their quality of work. The good thing about the wedding sites is that you can easily compare companies, side-by-side; however, that can also be a problem. This is because if you compare these companies, many of them sound like they're pretty much the same. So how do you know who is best for your event? Here's our advice.
1. Determine a Budget - How much are you comfortable spending for entertainment? Will you spend it all on a DJ, or are you wanting a DJ and photo booth? Choose what's best for you and your guests.
2. What's Included - Start comparing what is actually offered with the price you're paying. This is where the true differences are. Some DJs start with a great price, but it only includes a limited amount of hours, like 3 hours. They do this, knowing you'll certainly have to purchase more time. Don't fall for it! Do they include everything you'll need? Some companies will not include a microphone, or even "MC" services. Surprisingly, you'll have to pay more for those things with some companies.
3. Ceremony Music - If you need the DJ for the ceremony, find out if they will provide ceremony services, and how much it will cost. Many companies will charge several hundreds more dollars for this, so find out what's included with the ceremony addition.
4. Custom Playlist - Find out if you're able to choose songs for your wedding. Are you limited to what they offer you, or can you choose other songs? We've seen some companies limit their clients to their library and even seen others charge $1.00 for each song that the couple specifically wants played. That can add up, so definitely ask about a playlist.
5. Lighting - Find out if the DJ company will include dance floor lighting. Surprisingly, many companies don't include dance floor lighting. They'll charge you more to add it. Many venues can be very dark at night, so lighting is usually a must!
6. Other Options - Always ask about other options. Do they offer uplighting? A monogram? Photo booth? Projector? You can often save money by getting all of your options from one vendor, as opposed to hiring several vendors. We recently did an event that hired an outside company for the sound system. For some reason, they were unclear that we already included this with our services, despite us telling them. That company charged thousands more, and honestly, their sound system was terrible in comparison to ours.
Overall, there are numerous things to consider when hiring a DJ for your wedding in Austin, Central Texas, or anywhere! This is a great starting point, but certainly do your research and ask as many questions as you need to, to be sure you're hiring the best company for your needs. Here's a link to a great website that will allow you to find out the average cost of a wedding in your area by simply typing in your zip code! Here's the link to the average cost of wedding in Austin, Texas. Simply copy/paste the code to get detailed info, which is a great starting point to know how much you should be paying. Don't get gouged!
Check out the average prices. If you're having a wedding in a different city/zip code, simply change the zip code. We hope this article has been helpful. As always, feel free to email us with any questions and we'll be happy to help!
- Austin's Best DJs Team
So you're engaged, now what? Well, now you have to start planning your wedding by looking for all the best wedding vendors. If you're having your wedding in Austin or Central Texas, you'll have to find a wedding venue in the area, which can be difficult, if you don't plan early! You'll also need numerous other great wedding vendors that service the Austin area, such as a wedding DJ, a photographer, a wedding planner, a catering service, florist, wedding decor, cake... You get the idea.
I'm sure you have numerous questions and don't know where to even begin! Well, you've come to the right place. When it comes to Austin and Central Texas weddings and events, we've got your covered! We provide music and entertainment for approximately 200 events per year, so we know weddings, quinceaneras, parties, holiday parties and events! However, we know you need to hire more than just a great Austin wedding and event DJ and/or photo booth! So here are 8 great questions that you can ask any wedding vendor!
1. Experience - Ask, how many weddings do you do per year? Experience is one of the most important aspects of a wedding professional. The more experience the vendor has, the more skilled they will be. Don't just ask, "How long have you been in business?" That won't get you the best idea of their experience. Someone could have been in business for 5 years, yet only do 10 weddings per year, which means they've done about 50 weddings.
2. Price - How much will it cost? Most vendors have a basic starting price, so ask them for it, directly. Many vendors don't like to talk about price, but unfortunately, you need to know exactly what the price will be. Keep in mind that experienced, professional wedding vendors are most likely going to be more expensive than the Austin DJs, photographers, or catering services that advertise on Craigslist. With the higher expense, however, should come great, quality service that you're willing to pay a little more to get! You only get married once, so be sure to hire the right people to make sure your big day goes the way you want it to!
3. What is Included - Beyond the price question, find out what exactly will be included. Many vendors have basic packages, but you need to get all the details to know what you're getting. We know there are numerous vendors who may have a low introductory price to "hook you" and then charge you for everything that you'll need. For example, many of our DJ and photo booth competitors will charge a starting price, but then charge extra for things you'll need, like lighting, a microphone, set-up and break-down fee, a fee for every song you need that isn't in their music library, etc. Always find out exactly what you'll get for the price.
4. Deposit - How much is the deposit? The deposit rates vary per vendor, but we actually only charge a $100 deposit, to book a DJ for any Austin-area event. Many wedding vendors will require a 50% deposit, upfront, so be ready to pay this, if needed. After you pay the deposit, find out exactly what the payment terms are. When is your final payment due? Cash only? Check? Credit card? Ask questions.
5. Cancellation or Change Policy - In addition to the deposit, find out exactly what the cancellation policy is. Find out what happens if you cancel? What if they cancel? Ask them if they've ever cancelled on a client. Many vendors will keep your deposit, if you cancel, no matter how far out your event is. Be aware of this, when paying high deposits.
6. Additional Fees - Always ask if there are additional fees. Many vendors will add taxes and other charges, such as travel fees, or special overtime rates. Find out what exactly those fees are.
7. Liability Insurance - Ask if they carry liability insurance. Any reputable company carries insurance. If they don't, RUN! You don't want some fly-by-night company to take your deposit and run. Unfortunately, we've seen many Austin DJ and photo booth companies do this to many of our customers, and we hate to see this happen. So if they don't have liability insurance, beware.
8. Contracts - In addition to insurance, ask about contracts. The same advice applies. If they don't use contracts, RUN! A contract protects the vendor and you, just in case you need it! We get calls and emails all the time, from customers who need to book a DJ for their wedding, because another vendor took their deposit and stopped replying to their emails, changed their phone number, etc. Don't be another victim, ALWAYS get a contract!
These questions are a great start. We encourage you to do your research on your vendors. Ask around, to see if anyone you know has booked them. Read the reviews and remember, it's nearly impossible to please everyone, every time. If a company has a lot of bad reviews, well, obviously you should keep looking, but remember, if a company only has all good reviews, you have to wonder if they are all from legitimate customers? Lastly, directly ask your vendor that typical interview question, "why should we hire you?" The wedding vendor should be able to tell you why they are the best choice! If you decide on price, alone, beware, this isn't a great strategy. The lowest priced, AND the highest priced wedding vendor doesn't necessarily mean it's the absolute best choice! Congratulations, and ask always, contact us if we can help you answer any questions for you!
-Austin's Best DJs Team
As veterans in the wedding business, we've provided DJs and photo booths for hundreds of weddings, quinceaneras, parties, and events, in Austin and Central Texas. Every event we do has a general timeline that we try to follow, but we noticed that most of the time, the timeline gets off track, for various reasons. Here are 7 time-saving tips to help you stay on track and save time, on your big day!
1. Take Pictures Early - Usually, after the ceremony, cocktail hour begins, and couples will take pictures with their bridal party and families. A great way to save time is to have your bridal party and immediate family show up early to the wedding, and take lots of great pictures before the ceremony, early during the day! You won't be rushed and can take as many photos as time allows. You can still take some pictures immediately after the ceremony, but you won't need to take as many pictures, which saves valuable time!
2. Plan a Faster Plated Dinner Set-up - We often see weddings get off track during dinner, since people eat at different paces. If you're having a smaller wedding, with less than 75 people, dinner should take an hour or so. If it's more than 75, plan for longer. For plated dinners, have the staff put out all the salads and drinks, as early as possible. If dinner starts at 6 PM, have the staff put out the salads and drinks at 5:50 PM, so when dinner officially starts, it will start right on time, and there's no waiting for plates to be served.
3. Save Time in the Buffet Line - With any wedding, saving time is always a great thing. Whether you have 50 guests or 250, saving time at dinner is a must! We've seen some wedding dinners take 3 hours, due to poor planning. A great way to save time is to have two buffet lines. Even if there is only one area for food, a line on both sides will help people get their food, faster! Ideally, have your vendors have two different set ups, so your guests can have 2-4 separate lines. This saves a lot of time!
4. Cake Cutting - Many people schedule cake cutting halfway through the night, and though this is fine, you have to stop everything, turn on the lights, and completely change the mood. If everyone is dancing, this means you'll have to stop the party! We recommend doing cake cutting towards the end of dinner. This gives your guests some dessert, and also saves time. Often times, the cake cutting takes 10 minutes, to get all the pictures, etc. Then, many couples will want the cake cut and served to everyone, which is understandable. See the next tip to save time with cake cutting.
5. Designate a Cake Cutter - After the first slice of cake has been cut by the couple, save some time by designated a staff member or family member/friend, to cut the rest of the cake. Often times couples will take the time to cut the entire cake, which wastes a lot of time, since people usually will form a line to get cake. This can take 30 minutes, or more of precious time. Simply have the DJ announce that the cake will be cut and we'll announce when it's ready. Right after the couple cuts the cake, move on to the toast/speeches.
6. Toasts/Speeches - Toasts and speeches are a must, for any wedding! We've found that the best time to do these, is during dinner, right after the cake cutting. Many people wait until later in the night, but it's best to do earlier, since all your guests are there. During dinner, you'll have your audience captive and sitting down, and you won't have to find anyone who may be somewhere else, try to ask people to stop dancing, turn on the lights, etc. Do your toasts and speeches right after the cake cutting. Be sure your vendors or family/friends are serving the champagne or drinks, as cake is being cut. While the cake is being cut, the toasts are happening, and once the speeches are done, the cake is usually ready, which saves a lot of time!
7. Bouquet/Garter Toss - This last tip can save a lot of time, too! Often times, couples will wait until halfway through the night or later, to do the bouquet and garter tosses. We recommend doing these right after dinner, or within the first hour of the dance. This way, everyone is there to witness these and you'll have more people participating! Both of these should take about 5 minutes, each. The DJ will have to call everyone to the dance floor, and ideally, after dinner, everyone is right there, so no time trying to find everyone!
An important thing to keep in mind is that many older family members will leave shortly after the dance begins, depending on where they drove from, what time the ceremony started, and how long they've been there. It happens at every wedding, especially the weddings where there is a large gap in time from the ceremony to the reception. Keep this in mind when planning your wedding. This is also a great reason why we recommend all of the above tips. These key moments are important in every wedding, so getting these done early, will ensure all your guests will be there to share your moments!
As always, please contact us if you have any additional questions, and we'll be happy to help!
-Austin's Best DJs Team
If you google "wedding DJ Austin," you'll get over 21 million results. You'll probably check out page 1 and 2, maybe page 3, but how do you determine which DJ or DJ company will best suit your needs? A great way to do this is to narrow down your results and get at least 3-5 quotes from companies who meet your price range, have available DJs, and are reputable. Once you've received quotes, the next step is to ask them questions, to determine who will best meet your needs.
Here are the 20 most frequently asked questions from our customers and our answers! Feel free to use our list to ask your DJ, even if you're not booking with us! Though we cannot understand why you'd book with anyone else! :)
Question 1. Can we create our own playlist or request songs to be played?
Answer: Yes, we encourage all of our clients to fill out our music planning sheet that will have the genres of music you prefer, as well as a list of favorite artists and any must-play or do-not-play songs! We do not charge extra to create your playlist. We have a huge online music library that has all genres of music. We even have a helpful "popular songs" section, which provides guidance and suggestions for key moments songs, such as first dance songs, father/daughter songs, etc. This is your wedding and you should be able to decide what we play!
Question 2: How many people will be working the day of our wedding or event?
Answer: It depends on the needs of your event. We typically have two people at every wedding/event that we do, but sometimes, just one person is available. We may have additional people come early, to help us set up, but by the start time, only one or two people will be at the entire event.
Question 3: Will you need a dinner or drinks for you or your staff?
Answer: We do require a vendor meal for any wedding or event that is 5 hours or longer. We ask this because our staff will arrive 2 hours before the start time of any event, and break-down for about 1 hour, after an event, which is an 8 hour day.
Question 4: Do you or your staff drink alcohol on the job?
Answer: Absolutely not. We've seen many other DJs, photo booth staff, photographers, and other staff, help themselves to a plate of food and help themselves to the open bar, which we completely do not understand. We've seen other staff intoxicated, while on the job, and we're always amazed at how they stay in business. We're professionals and we do not do this and require that all of our staff do not do this, either. We'll gladly accept water or non-alcoholic drinks if you offer, but this is also not required.
Question 5: Do you bring all the necessary equipment for our event or do we need to provide anything?
Answer: We've heard of other DJs and DJ companies requiring the customer to rent the sound system, which is surprising! We bring all the equipment we need for every event we provide services for. We simply need an 8X8 area to set up, near a standard power outlet. If the venue offers free tables, we always love it if there is a 6 ft table set up in the area you need us to set up, but if they charge you for each table (which many venues do), we'll gladly save you some money and bring our own table.
Question 6: Do you bring back up equipment, in case anything happens?
Answer: Yes, we certainly do. All of our DJs are very experienced and know how to handle a situation where they may need to make adjustments, if equipment isn't working correctly. We always check-in with our staff during set up and are available "on-call", if problems arise at any time during the event.
Question 7: Do you have other staff, available, if the DJ or photo booth attendant gets sick or has an emergency?
Answer: Yes, we have 8 DJs that work with our team and we always check in with every DJ, the week of the event. We also check in with the DJ/photo booth attendant 3 hours before the event start time, to ensure they're going to make the event. If a DJ or photo booth attendant is sick or has an emergency, we will notify the customer immediately and provide an experienced, professional staff for the event.
Question 8: What is your cancellation policy?
Answer: Our cancellation policy states that all deposits are non-refundable. We will, however, refund 100% of any payments made toward the balance, outside of the deposit. Fortunately, our deposits are very reasonable. Most DJ companies require 50% of the total balance, to book an event and the deposit is non-refundable. We do not do this. Our deposits are $100.
Question 9: Is there an additional charge for special-requested dance floor lighting?
Answer: If there is a particular light that you request that we do not have, then we can obtain the light(s), if needed, for an additional charge.
Question 10: Do you provide an "MC" for our event, who will make necessary announcements?
Answer: Yes, we certainly do and no, there is not an additional charge for an MC. Many companies charge an extra fee for an MC, which to us, is crazy. So the DJ will not say a word, unless you pay him/her? Wow. Again, we're fair and don't do this.
Question 11: Do you have bilingual DJs, who can make announcements in Spanish?
Answer: Yes, nearly all of our DJs are bilingual, and can do this. If there is another language in which you need announcements, we will certainly let you or one of your guests make any announcement(s), with our PA system. We've done several weddings where other languages were spoken/used, (Chinese, Vietnamese, ASL) and clients designated a person to make announcements for guests, in addition to our announcements.
Question 12: How long does it take set up and break-down your equipment?
Answer: Depending on the needs of your event, the set up can take anywhere from 45 minutes, to 2 hours or more. Most weddings and events that we've done in venues in Austin and Central Texas, take about 60 - 90 minutes, to set up. Break down takes about one hour (or more if using multiple systems).
Question 13: Is set-up/break-down time included in the time we purchase or charged separately?
Answer: We will arrive approximately 2 hours before any event, to set up, and we do not charge extra for set up; your time starts when the music starts, not when we arrive to set up. You are also not charged for break-down time, either. Exception: if you need us to set up earlier than 2 hours, or break-down later than one hour after the event ends, there is an additional charge. Example: wedding ceremony starts at 5 pm, and we'd normally arrive at 3 pm, to set up, but you need the DJ or photo booth to set up at 12 pm. Many companies do not include set-up/break-down time and charge additional fees for this time. Again, we do not do this, unless it is the above exception.
Question 15: What do you typically wear?
Answer: We always dress appropriately for the occasion. Our staff will wear slacks and a button up dress shirt. For outdoor, summer events, we have company Polo shirts we typically wear, with slacks. If we need to dress more formal, please let us know and we certainly can do this. We've seen many vendors show up in shorts, flip flop sandals, T shirts, baseball caps, tank tops, etc., to a wedding. We can never understand how they stay in business.
Question 16: Is there a minimum amount of hours to book?
Answer: Yes, we require a two hour minimum for DJ and/or photo booth services.
Question 17: Will the DJ take requests?
Answer: Yes, we can certainly take requests. We will do our best to play all requests, given that we have the song and there is enough time to get through the written playlist and must-play songs. We ask all our clients to let us know if requests are okay and ask for any restrictions on requests, such as: "Yes, play requests, but no rap, metal, etc."
Question 18: If the crowd is shy or not dancing, do you motivate the crowd to dance?
Answer: We rarely have to do this, but yes, we certainly can. We do numerous weddings and events, all year, so we know what people like and want to dance to. We play great music and people will dance!
Question 19: Can you assist me in finding music for our ceremony or reception?
Answer: Yes, we'll be glad to assist you in planning your ceremony and reception music. We have numerous planning tips on this blog, just scroll down!
Question 20: Do you provide any other services for weddings or events?
Answer: Yes, we certainly do! We provide: photo booth services, uplighting, monogram lighting, sound for live ceremony performances, custom music mix/mash-up, projector, projector screen, and more.
We certainly hope this list of questions has been helpful for you. As always, if you have additional questions, feel free to contact us and we'll be happy to help!
- Austin's Best DJs Team
So your wedding is coming up and you have so much to plan and not enough time to do it all! After you've hired all your vendors, secured your wedding venue, and finally decided on the right food menu, now comes the actual wedding ceremony and reception planning. If you have a good wedding coordinator, this will be a breeze, since they will most likely have a general wedding timeline template for your to use and begin to plan with. If you don't have a wedding coordinator, this is where it gets tricky! Luckily, you have us here to help!
Not every DJ company is the same. Actually most are very different and what you get for your money will vary greatly, so be sure to ask lots of questions about what is included with the service. If you have a wedding planner, ideally, he/she will also serve as the day-of coordinator, but this is not always the case. Some planners will do all the planning and then charge an extra fee to also serve as the day-of coordinator. This is surprising, but true. So be sure to clarify with your coordinator if this is included. If it is not included, there are some options.
Option 1: Your DJ can also serve as the day-of coordinator for your wedding ceremony and reception. You'll need to work with your DJ and write every detail down, so he/she can be sure to follow your planning. Luckily, we have a very detailed wedding timeline document (and Quinceanera timeline document) that makes this planning process much easier. You'll need to identify every key moment of the night (ceremony start time, bridal procession time, cocktail hour, dinner, first dance, etc). You'll need to be specific about what time each event will occur and what songs should be played, too. Read our blog post on examples of popular songs for weddings, if you're having trouble getting started.
Once you have all the details written out, send a copy to your DJ (if he/she is willing to do this) and they should be able to coordinate everything according to your wishes. Oh, and be sure to ask if this is something your DJ will do. Not all DJ companies will do this. Many will charge extra, to do this, too. We include this service, free!
Option 2: Additionally, if you don't feel comfortable leaving the wedding details and coordination with your DJ, ask a member of your wedding party, or one of the parents. Most often, the maid of honor will have this duty. Give her your document and she'll need to check in with the vendors and DJ, as often as needed, to be sure everything is flowing smoothly. Be sure to send a copy to the DJ, too, just in case she gets busy and loses track of time. Make enough copies of your timeline to give to the vendors that may need it. Don't forget to have the designated coordinator introduce him/herself to all the vendors, as soon as they arrive, just so they know who to check-in with.
Option 3: The last option, is to go ahead and hire a day-of coordinator. Know that this can get expensive, though. The cost can be anywhere from $500 - $1500, for their services. If you have the money in your budget, then you should certainly consider this. If not, then try the above-mentioned options.
No matter which option you choose, be sure to have your wedding timeline thoroughly planned out and written. Every hour should be planned! It's better to over-plan, then to under-plan. Lastly, as always, if you have any additional questions, please feel free to contact us and we'll be happy to help!
Wedding planning can be quite challenging, since there’s so many details to consider. Luckily, we’re here to help you and save some time, too! Wedding ceremonies typically last about 15-25 minutes, depending upon the officiant and what will be included in the ceremony. Remember, your guests will be arriving before the ceremony begins, so you’ll need your DJ or live performer to begin approximately 10-15 minutes before the ceremony starts, to play the prelude music. Choose 5-7 songs to be played for the prelude, which will help in the event that not everyone has arrived on time, dressing time is taking longer than expected, etc. Most songs typically last about 3-4 minutes, so this will give you 15- 30 minutes of prelude music, if needed.
Next, choose the wedding party entrance song(s). One to three songs should be sufficient, depending on the song length and the number of people in the wedding party. Prelude and wedding party entrance songs are typically classical music, but feel free to make your wedding unique and choose songs that you love. Next, is the bridal party entrance song! Choose the traditional bridal procession song, or choose your own favorite song. There are dozens of different versions of the bridal procession and recession song, so be sure to research the options to choose which song/version you like best.
If you’re doing a candle or sand ceremony, feel free to choose a background song for this moment, too. Finally, we have the couple recession song! Most couples like to choose their favorite “couple song” which also makes your wedding unique. This is a great, memorable moment, so choose a song that defines the moment for you!
After the ceremony is complete, Cocktail Hour begins, to allow the couple and wedding party to take pictures. Most couples choose soft, background music to be played for the hour (sometimes 1.5 hours). Once Cocktail Hour is complete, the wedding party will make their entrance. Some couples choose to announce their parents and the entire wedding party, while others choose to introduce the bride and groom only. A song can be chosen for the wedding party and usually, a different song is chosen for the couple’s introduction.
After the couple has been introduced, dinner usually begins. Most couples play a mix of soft, background music, but any music/genre can be played, depending upon the couple’s taste and preferences. Some couples choose to be introduced and then do the first dances (bride and groom, bride and father, groom and mother dances) immediately after. Most couples choose to eat dinner, first, then after dinner, do the first dances. There are many song choices for these dances (examples of common song choices are listed on another post on our blog). Toasts are also done, during dinner.
After dinner concludes, the dance floor will open. Couples should choose the genres of music they wish to hear, along with other genres that their family and friends may enjoy. A good mixture of music works best, to ensure everyone will have an enjoyable evening. Other moments where songs will need to be chosen are: cake cutting, bouquet/garter toss, and the last dance/send-off song. Please see our blog for common examples of songs used for these moments.
This is the basic timeline of how most weddings are done, but of course every wedding can be changed, according to the couple’s needs and wishes. We hope to have provided you with some helpful advice. Please feel free to email us, if you have any additional planning questions and we’ll be happy to help, congratulations!
Austin's Best DJs
We've taken our decades of experience and compiled it into a few helpful articles, to help you plan your wedding or event!