Wedding Timeline Tips

A well thought out wedding timeline is key to a successful wedding day. A poorly designed timeline can add unwanted stress for you and your guests.  Be sure to follow the wedding timeline tips below for so you feel as stress free as Lauren and Daz did on their wedding day!

Buffer Time:

One of the most valuable things you can take from my wedding timeline tips is to allow buffer times throughout your day. I honestly can’t stress this enough. Seemingly small things can take longer than expected. The amount of bridal dress malfunctions I’ve seen, missing bouquets, hair and makeup going overtime. You name it, any one of these things could happen to you.

By allowing 10 minutes of wiggle room here to compensate for when a minor setback occurs will likely save yourself from much unwanted stress on one of the most important days of your life.

Remember, not everything will go to plan. This is perfectly normal. So take things in your stride, relax and enjoy every minute of the day you’ve been waiting so long for.

Bridal Prep:

Leah Da Gloria Wedding Dress

Hair should be done before your photographer arrives or as your photographer is photographing the details. After all, who wants photos with their hair in rollers. Once the makeup is looking more complete your photographer can start capturing photos of the bride and her guests.

For the bride, if possible try and have your hair and makeup finished one hour before you are due to leave. That way in case hair and makeup are running late (they often do) then there’s no sweat. And I can have a few minutes to snap a few lovely pre ceremony portraits.


You will need the bouquet ready for bridal photos, and if you are having a first look. Make sure that the bouquets are on hand at least 90 minutes before the bride is due to depart for the ceremony and preferably earlier.

Bouquets are lovely details to be captured and it is likely the bridal details will be the first thing the photographer will be capturing upon arriving at bridal prep.

Your photographer will likely also want to capture a small few portraits of you before you leave for the ceremony. Having the bouquets on hand will not only save hassle but allow your photographer to capture this special detail as a part of your bridal portraits.

Travel Time:

For city weddings, be sure to factor in travel time between your preparation location and ceremony. Don’t underestimate weekend traffic. it can be worse than weekday traffic. Even Byron Bay has its fair dose of weekend traffic! For all of you getting married in Maleny and Yamba, or the Hunter Valley, you should be just fine 😁

Post Ceremony:

Ecco Ristorante Wedding

One thing I often see couples overlooking is just how long it takes between signing the marriage papers and starting family photos. Everybody wants to hug the very excited newlyweds! I ask my couples to factor in 20-30 minutes for this alone!

There’s also so many beautiful candid images to be captured at this time and it’s a truly beautiful time to spend with your guests when emotions are running high!

Family Photos:

Providing your photographer with the different family photo combinations can allow them to better calculate how long to allow for family photos. Well planned family photos ensures that your portrait time doesn’t get eaten into.

Bonus tip: nominate an assertive guest who can put faces to names to MC the family photos. This can honestly speed family photos up by a factor of 2!

Couples/Bridal Portraits:

Belgenny Farm Wedding Slideshow-2

If you are after really dramatic couples photos and want to feature the landscape, I would highly recommend scheduling some time for couples photos in the hour before sunset. During the hour before sunset the light is at its most beautifulest and can help create a sense of intimacy and drama to your photos.

If you can schedule your cocktail hour for this time, then even better. Don’t worry, you can bring your champagne with you.

And if it’s not possible to start the reception after golden hour, if your wedding is in the middle of summer for example, then I encourage you to schedule the reception with a 20 minute gap where we can sneak out and capture some golden hour pics.

If I haven’t convinced you yet, then have a look below and you’ll catch my drift.

Byron View Farm Sunset Bride and GroomByron View Farm Wedding bride and groom at sunset with amazing coloured skyCountry Wedding Bride and Groom in sunsetBundaleer Rainforest Gardens Wedding Bride and Groom kissing at sunsetTooraloo Farm Stay Wedding Byron Bay Bridal Party at SunsetSydney Elopement Photography 3Bride and Groom at sunset in Byron BayByron Bay Wedding at Sunset-3Sam Wyper Photography Pier One Wedding Silhouette


Dinner should be served no later than one hour after the reception starts in order to avoid grumbly guests. If this is not possible make sure you have ample snacks on hand, empty stomachs + free booze = 🤪

Cake Cutting:

Consider whether there will be any elderly guests attending. If yes, I recommend scheduling the cake cutting relatively early so no one misses out. Grandmothers love seeing this timely tradition.

There you have it, my best wedding timeline tips and tricks. Feel free to keep browsing below with more helpful tips and tricks or contact me here for a quote.