book now!

Photographing around Rhode Island and Southern New England; Newport, Providence, Block Island 

free resources

Spring Minis! 

Mini Sessions

client login

Podcast 🎙


Join the Newsletter


photo booth




Reasons to Host a Midweek Wedding | Interview with Susanne Day of The Newport Experience | Wedding Secrets Unveiled! Podcast

Today on Wedding Secrets Unveiled!, you are in for a treat!  Are you looking for a way to minimize costs for your big day? Or are you planning a destination wedding for you or your guests? Are you wondering how to afford your dream venue and dream vendors? If any of these sound like your wedding planning experience, then Susanne Day of The Newport Experience is here to help you decide if a midweek wedding is the solution you have been searching for! Susanne is an expert in midweek weddings and has more tips than AI! So check out this episode to see if a midweek wedding is the right fit for you!

Susanne Day of the Newport Experience shares reasons to host a midweek wedding on Wedding Secrets Unveiled! Podcast with Sara Zarrella

Meet Susanne! 

I started working at the Newport Life Magazine in 2000 and then started working for Newport Wedding Magazine and the Newport Bridal Show, I had such a blast those years!! I’ve been with the Newport Experience team since 2014 so I’m still working with couples and vendors, just in a different way than before. Newport Experience has a few venues under our company – OceanCliff, and Regatta Place both in Newport, RI. We also have the Stone House Inn and Little Compton. That’s a beautiful secluded country house, and we do lots of retreats out there. The bulk of our weddings are at OceanCliff and Regatta Place. We also have a schooner – a 68 passenger antique sailing yacht. I know you’ve photographed on the Aurora, Sara and Dan. See a beautiful wedding on the Aurora here! 

I’m really excited about today’s topic, too!

Yes, I definitely think it’s important to let all those who are listening to us know how this idea came to us. I just thought that it’s definitely trending. We’re seeing it in the industry. And it’s something that we need to talk about and to explore and let our listeners know. 

Absolutely. I’m super passionate about this. At our venues, OceanCliff and Regatta Place, we do so many midweek weddings. When we say midweek, by the way, we mean weddings Monday through Thursday. 

So with that said, you and I were both working at OceanCliff for a lovely bride who actually had to give her a shout out: Nyree and and her (now) husband Hansley. She was listening because you were on. And we’ve been lucky enough to have you on for several episodes now (episode 37 and episode 11). Anyway, Nyree and Hansley got married on a Monday with a wedding of about 125 guests. 

Right away, I think that’s a huge misconception about midweek weddings: no one’s going to come to my wedding. But people will show up for you. Nyree and Hansley had about 125 guests, stayed on budget, had a super private day with an amazing wedding. It was super chill and a really killer day, honestly. Without divulging the private details, they paid about a quarter of what they would have for a similar day at the same venue on a Saturday night. 

Yes. The same view, same beautiful decor as a Saturday wedding. I think couples worry it won’t feel like a “real” wedding. But, it could have been any day that we walked in. It was still the same vibe as any other celebration. People were there and ready to go – because you plan in advance, many guests can still make the weekday wedding. 

Susanne Day of the Newport Experience shares reasons to host a midweek wedding on Wedding Secrets Unveiled! Podcast with Sara Zarrella.

With that said, let’s talk more about midweek weddings. What other tips do you have for me?

Well, so funny story. I was working on some notes for the show and wanted to find a fun fact that you might not know. So, I used the AI chat to find out why you should book a midweek wedding… and I was laughing so hard. Every single point I had in my notes popped up. There’s a lot they missed too, of course – but it was definitely on the right track! This is what the AI chat gave me:

“One of the main reasons is that they are usually less expensive than weekend weddings 1. Since there is less competition for venues and suppliers on weekdays, they can offer significant discounts to guarantee making a sale on these less-than-popular days 1. This can affect just about anything, from the celebrant to catering to hair and makeup professionals for the bridal party 1. Additionally, midweek weddings tend to be cheaper for guests to attend if they are traveling from out of town or overseas 1.

Another reason is that midweek weddings offer more flexibility in terms of vendor availability 2. Couples can choose from a wider range of vendors and have more control over their wedding day 2. They can also avoid the stress of competing with other couples for the same vendors on weekends 2.

Finally, midweek weddings can weed out people who don’t want to be there 1. Since they are less convenient for guests who work or study during the week, attending a wedding on a weekday usually requires planning 1. This means that only the people who really want to be there will make the effort to attend. “

So anyway, one of the main reasons to book a midweek wedding is that they’re typically less expensive. Overall for the couples, guests, and vendors: it’s the same wedding. Everything will look and feel the same – for a fraction of the cost. There’s also less competition for dates and vendors… and those are just a few of the reasons to consider booking a midweek wedding. 

Susanne Day of the Newport Experience shares reasons to host a midweek wedding on Wedding Secrets Unveiled! Podcast with Sara Zarrella

That’s hilarious! Let’s start breaking down some of those considerations for a midweek wedding. 

All right. So here’s the first thing: a midweek wedding isn’t gonna work for everybody. It’s a great idea to consider, but it may not be the right thing for you. But, I want it to be one of the tools in your toolbox when you’re thinking about your wedding day. When I start speaking with a couple, I immediately want to get a feel for what’s most important to them for their wedding day: the 5 W’s we talked about in Episode 11. Some couples have a really clear focus, and some don’t. Either is okay. The whole process of planning a wedding can be really overwhelming. Honestly, one of the biggest challenges most couples have is figuring out the pricing for a wedding day. 

Susanne Day of the Newport Experience shares reasons to host a midweek wedding on Wedding Secrets Unveiled! Podcast with Sara Zarrella.

So I start by asking where they live and where their guests would be coming from. This helps us determine what day of the week might be best for their guests and if they’d be open to a non-Saturday wedding. Next, I like to ask my clients about their ceremony location. If they’re planning a church wedding ceremony, sometimes they think that the church will only marry them on a Saturday. And that’s not the case anymore. In fact, lots of churches will work with you on most days of the week, like a Monday or Thursday. I also ask about the guest count. Many venues have a food and beverage minimum that allows for non-Saturday weddings to be more affordable for couples with smaller guest counts. After I know those things, I can start to put together a rough quote for them. 

The bottom line is that every couple is different and have different needs. So, it’s important to listen and personalize their experience. For our venues, we have Monday and Thursday weddings so our staff has time off. That all plays into the choice for a midweek wedding. 

So, once a couple knows their needs… why should they consider a midweek wedding?

Love this question. Okay, so there’s lots of different reasons why you should consider hosting a midweek wedding. The first one I find is couples who have specific dates in mind. Sometimes it’s a special anniversary like a first date or an engagement date or a grandparents anniversary, or a loved one’s birthday that has passed and they want to honor them and remember them forever. Some cultures also have dates that are more preferred. And sometimes, couples just need a non-weekend date for their own work or personal lives. 

Susanne Day of the Newport Experience shares reasons to host a midweek wedding on Wedding Secrets Unveiled! Podcast with Sara Zarrella

That’s a really great point. There’s so many couples that pick certain dates because people love numbers. 

Next, international couples or their guests may want a midweek wedding because of the travel involved. Couples often think that their wedding has to be a Saturday because people are traveling – but that isn’t the case. They can fly in and out whenever, and if you’re adding extra events to create a full experience for your wedding week, then there’s even more for them to do. 

Absolutely. A lot of places around here also have a minimum stay of two nights, so that may impact travel anyway. 

Local couples can also consider midweek weddings – even if the venue is just a short drive from their house! In fact, it may help cut the cost down if you don’t need to stay overnight at the venue. But again, those hotels and accommodations may be less expensive midweek, too, for you and your guests. Again: people will show up for you, no matter what day. You’ll still have a fun wedding. Honestly, the truth is that some weddings are boring because the guests are boring – it’s not about the date or time of your celebration. 

You know what? I’m so happy. You said that because I literally was waiting for you to finish your sentence because it’s what I was going to say. Make yourself happy when you plan your wedding – not everyone else. 

Ultimately, the wedding is the people who you love, and they’re there to celebrate your marriage together – no matter when you’re getting married.

Susanne Day of the Newport Experience shares reasons to host a midweek wedding on Wedding Secrets Unveiled! Podcast with Sara Zarrella.

Absolutely. Also, I was just thinking: midweek weddings can work for people who want a short engagement.  

Right. Now, a lot of times, venues are filling up early and vendors book up to 2 years in advance. But, those bookings are generally the prime dates. So, if you don’t want to wait to get married after getting engaged, looking at alternative dates can be your best bet. 

Yeah, we’ve had so many couples book midweek weddings after attending another one. They like the vibe and the venue.  

This is not a new topic. This is not a new thought process. People have been getting married midweek for many, many years. But like you said, I think it’s starting to not be taboo. We’re all becoming a little less cookie cutter and are getting really creative with how we work and live. Midweek weddings are another way to think out of the box and be more flexible. 

Susanne Day of the Newport Experience shares reasons to host a midweek wedding on Wedding Secrets Unveiled! Podcast with Sara Zarrella

Can we talk about vendor availability?

When you think about the things that are most important on your day: usually a specific photographer, or videographer or band or DJ, and they only have certain dates open, you may choose the venue and a wedding date around their schedule. I don’t see this happen a lot. But when it does happen, I get chills because it means that that couple is already planning their wedding before they’re engaged. They’re looking at Instagram and Tiktok and venues. They’re going to their friend’s weddings and saying: “Whoa, that band was amazing. I want that band for my wedding. Or, I love that photographer at my sister’s wedding. I want to do my wedding too and I want to start by checking their availability first.” 

So these are all things when I talk to my clients, knowing what’s really important to them, we can figure out what the vendor has available first. In the past, I actually had a bride change her venue just to get a date the photographer that they wanted could do. I’ve had couples who want a specific band reach out and ask about a midweek date because they can’t fit their Saturday pricing in their budget. 

Susanne Day of the Newport Experience shares reasons to host a midweek wedding on Wedding Secrets Unveiled! Podcast with Sara Zarrella

It’s kind of like a puzzle sometimes – if there’s a venue or vendor you know that you want for your wedding day. I want to go back to what you just said though: availability AND budget. Personally, we have a specific package we can offer to our midweek wedding couples. Some vendors do that, and others don’t. But, it’s good to ask if there’s anything unique for you! 

Yeah, a lot of times couples will book photographers at an hourly rate for weddings during the week. I thought it was crazy at first. But, it’s more simple and it works for them and their vendors. I counsel my clients over how to save money when planning a wedding and that definitely includes talking to their vendors. Sometimes they have minimums you have to meet (specifically florists and rentals), but others may have flexibility like you just said. Get the quote and then talk with them – explain your budget, that you’re not a weekend wedding, and see if they can offer something. Don’t be rude. But let them work with you.  

For all of our listeners, regardless, when you’re getting married, please take if you take anything from this podcast, take the words that Susanne just said. That’s a really smart way of approaching your vendors. There’s nothing wrong with asking your vendors if they can work with their budget, but definitely, it’s a super turnoff to start getting quotes from other people and then ask him to compare or beat it. Because here’s the thing, everybody’s service is a little different. And so if you just are open and honest with people about your budget, then all they can say is no or they can come up with some other ideas that you may not even know that they could do.  

Yeah, absolutely. Okay, so another reason to host a midweek wedding: unique experiences. 

We talked about this at the very beginning with the intro – our schooner Aurora. Some packages are only offered for midweek weddings with smaller guests counts. So, when you’re talking with a venue, there might be special packages for elopements, mini Moons or even midweek weddings. Like, we use the schooner Aurora for those smaller weddings with a dockside reception. But only on Monday and Thursday. We’re limited by our schedule and other commitments so we have to offer it then. It is still SO beautiful and intimate. People don’t spare expenses and it shows. But, their day is automatically more personal and special. Sometimes midweek weddings offer you something out of the box that no one else is going to have. 

That makes me think of a wedding I had this summer. They just wanted to be married right on the beach, on the edge of the water. That was it. Their option quickly became a midweek wedding because I couldn’t have done that any other time of the week. I offered a Thursday and they took it without a second thought because it was what she wanted to do: a beach wedding with a picnic after, just 25 people. It was perfect and so special. 

I love that. You mentioned the smaller guest count. Midweek weddings are a great way to cut down your guest count. Most people are going to show up for you – no matter the day. But, when you plan a midweek wedding, about 10-20% of the people invited will not come. I had a bride invite 250 people to her midweek wedding and 200 came. So, that was a bit bigger but you still see how many people they lost. Remember, the people that matter most will show up for you. 

Sometimes, when you have a smaller guest count, though, you can spend that money in other places – upgrades to your decor, a more elaborate honeymoon, or something for your bridal party. There’s lots of ways to elevate your day. So, sometimes a midweek wedding can free up funds to use on other things – a welcome party, these new content creator vendors, or a venue. Honestly, a venue is where you’re going to spend the bulk of your wedding budget. 

Susanne Day of the Newport Experience shares reasons to host a midweek wedding on Wedding Secrets Unveiled! Podcast with Sara Zarrella.

So when it comes to budget and mid week weddings, there’s a lot that you can do and save when it comes to your flexibility with your budget. Let’s talk about this some more. 

Okay, budget! “Budget” is not a bad word by the way. A budget is just the amount of money I want to spend on something. Many wedding planners agree that couples underestimate the amount of money and time it takes to plan a wedding. So, it’s important to really understand your budget and the money you have available. First, have that budget conversation with your family or whoever is paying. You need to know where the money is coming from before you can plan anything. 

Again, I really want to squash the myth that because you’re having a mid week wedding that your wedding is not going to be as glamorous or as custom or as unique. It’s actually the exact opposite. 

Susanne Day of the Newport Experience shares reasons to host a midweek wedding on Wedding Secrets Unveiled! Podcast with Sara Zarrella

One more question: when we first started, we talked a little bit about work schedules and scheduling a midweek wedding. Let’s talk about that some more.

Absolutely.  Guess what? Lots of people don’t have Monday through Friday, nine to five work schedules anymore. So, it’s really important for couples to do what’s best for them and then let your friends and family come and celebrate. Don’t worry about work schedules. We get time off, let’s use it to celebrate people we love. 

Wrap-Up Question

So normally, if you were a listener to the show, I had the same format for my wrap up question, but I think with this one, I’m just gonna let you take the floor. What are some key points and your final piece of advice that you can give couples who are looking to seek planning on a mid week wedding?

Okay, so final piece of advice. Don’t rule out a venue because you think it’s outside of your budget. Reach out to your dream venue, tell them your guests count and your budget, and then ask which options are best for you. They may guide you into a different season or a day of the week or suggest a lower price menu or bar combination. 

Also, it’s also a really good idea to start a conversation about what’s really important to you as a couple. And as a family. Before you start your venue search, firm up the budget and the guest count and then determine how flexible you can be overall. So starting off with a wedding planner can also be a smart way to maximize your time and budget as they work with so many venues for local and destination planning. 

Susanne Day of the Newport Experience shares reasons to host a midweek wedding on Wedding Secrets Unveiled! Podcast with Sara Zarrella

What We Discussed

Meet Susanne (2:04)

Why We’re Discussing Midweek Weddings (6:06)

Midweek Wedding Benefits (13:20)

Midweek Wedding Inspiration (33:00)

Budget Benefits (49:19)

Wrap-Up Question (1:02:05)

Links Mentioned in the Episode

You can find The Newport Experience: Website  | Instagram Ocean Cliff, Instagram Regatta Place and Instagram Schooner Aurora | Facebook Ocean Cliff, Facebook for Regatta Place and Facebook Schooner Aurora

Find Susanne: Instagram

You can subscribe to this podcast from wherever you’re listening so you never miss an episode. And, we would so appreciate it if you left a fabulous review for our show on Apple podcast! Even better, share it with a friend. It’s a great way to show your support and let us know what you think. Thank you so much for listening!

Listen to us on:

Apple Podcast



Google Podcast