Ok before we start I just want you to know that today i’m going to expose the wedding DJ industry for what it truly is.  I am going to reveal what a bunch of scammers we all are, preying on unsuspecting couples, charging a huge wedding tax compared to other types of work we do.

Welcome to…


So here I am sat here in my pokey flat doing research for this post and the internet is awash with stories of the wedding tax, an amount of money added to an event just because it’s a wedding.

Mentioning the magic W word can send costs spiralling up towards the clouds.

The merest hint that this is not a run of the mill family party can have DJ’s increasing their prices by as much as 50% or more!

Scandalous…what a rip off!  We’re clearly fleecing brides and grooms up and down the country!

Consumer champion Which? exposed our deceit and we are causing emotional stress before the happy couple even get to the church!


Now, before you all run off and start sending me hate emails i’m about to do a swift about-turn and reveal that the wedding markup is indeed very real and there are many reasons why!

Most wedding DJ’s fall into two categories.  1) We charge the same price for any kind of party, including weddings or 2) We charge different prices for say a birthday party compared to a wedding.

Is it wrong that we should charge a different price for a wedding than a birthday party?

Absolutely not!

As wedding DJ’s, we work our butts off.  We worry about being booked for the following year, have the daily stress of running a business on our shoulders, maintaining that all-important work-life balance to not only have the desire to make the couples we work with the happiest they could ever be on their wedding day but also our spouses and family.  Some of us even work during the week or are stay-at-home parents looking after small children or home-schooling.

We’re entrepreneurs, dreamers, creatives and we work damn hard!  We work unsociable hours, often getting home at 3 or 4 in morning before having to get up on a Sunday at 7am to head off out to a wedding fayre where we have to defend our prices from people asking for a discount because it’s on a weekday, or out of season, or because Jupiter and Saturn are aligned, or some other reason from people who do not respect the amount of work that goes into what we do.

All of these magazines and reports that run the great wedding scam stories are confusing clients and make us sound like we’re sneaky and greedy.  This level of misinformation and fake-news makes it even worse for us to defend our prices going forward.  And to top it all off, we’re now receiving sneaky emails from couples asking for prices to DJ at a birthday party in order to price-check us and our integrity!

There are many reasons as to why DJ’ price weddings differently to a birthday party and it’s our job to rightfully educate our clients on why it’s different.

So here it is…A wedding, from start to finish might consist of the following…

  • Emailing a potential client a few times about their enquiry, pricing, etc.
  • Meeting clients in a face-to-face consultation. (1-2 hours)
  • A few more emails regarding confirmation of pricing, the finer details and contract, etc.
  • A final meeting before the wedding to dot the i’s and cross the t’s, discuss music, etc. (another 1-2 hours)
  • Sitting at home during the week downloading music, going through playlists, equipment maintenance, managing your anxiety for the upcoming weekend.
  • Waking up early on a Saturday morning to have enough time to pack the car, make sure you have snacks and bottled water, get ready, leave half an hour earlier than you’re supposed to in case you get lost, arriving at the wedding and being on your A-game for the next 8-12 hours.
  • The actual event itself, making sure you have backups and backups for backups.  Playing the right first dance, announcing the happy couple properly, dealing with crazy family members and people telling you they used to a DJ.  People moaning that no-one likes the song you’re playing when the dance floor is full.  Trying not to get beer spilt on your equipment, making sure the bride and groom have the best party ever!
  • Getting home late that evening after having to pack away in the rain, walking up and down a slippery metal fire escape and maybe posting a few images on Facebook before you get into bed.
  • Waking up the next day at the crack of dawn with a headache, swollen ankles and achy joints before you head off out to a wedding fayre.

A wedding compared to a birthday party is a completely different beast.  A birthday party wouldn’t require a face-to-face meeting or a number of emails discussing the evening in detail, even if both events have the same amount of hours, same equipment and the same number of people attending.  Usually, we’d just turn up, play music, still deal with drunken guests and then go home.

A birthday party is a birthday party.  You have one every year, putting aside coming of age parties like 13th’s, 16th’s, 18th’s, 21st’s, etc. although some people do celebrate these numbers several times in their life!.  A wedding only happens once (usually) and it is one of the most important life events a person can go through.  It rests entirely on your shoulders and if you screw it up, your business and livelihood are dead.  It’s the months of planning, preparation and behind the scenes work that really sets it apart from any other kind of party.

Ultimately what I’m saying is that there is more work, more risk and we have every right to price it differently, if we choose to go down that route.

Don’t let people disrespect us, our fees and make running a business more challenging than it is already.

Thank you, and good luck!

Ian Forest (info@discofever.co.uk)


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