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Wedding DJ Prices Rates

Updated on June 23, 2011

Cute Bride

Wedding DJ Rates

Your wedding is one of the most important events in your life. You want it to go well. There are so many things involved in wedding planning. Everything from wedding colors, to wedding cakes, to wedding venues, and of course, the all important wedding dress, must be planned far in advance to assure the best wedding event possible.

Unfortunately, most of these wedding items are not cheap. Some estimates suggest that the average wedding costs $10,000 to $25,000 depending upon location. With numbers like these, it is no wonder that many brides to be, as well as the bridal family, are eager to keep costs down and watch expenses. However, nobody wants to be so cheap that they also get low quality.

That is why it can be helpful to know what the going rate is in your city, town, or area for everything from wedding cakes, to event planning, to venue rentals, and catering. Of course, that list also should include the going rate for wedding DJs. Pay too little and you risk the horror of the Sam Buschemi wedding singer from the movie of the same name.

So what is the average wedding DJ rate? Or, more specifically, the average wedding reception DJ cost.

Unfortunately, many DJs and wedding DJ companies do not list their rates on their webpages. This is due to numerous factors including the personalized nature of most events, as well as to avoid snooping competitors. However, an idea of what wedding DJs charge can often be gleaned by checking classified ads or job or gig postings on a local advertising service.

Wedding DJ rates very by location and length of event, as well as services provided. In Colorado, for example, a survey of local area DJ pricing suggests that the average wedding DJ price per hour is $50 to $100 for a wedding at a Denver hotel ballroom. However, additional services such as lighting, video production, multi-lingual DJs, and so on can add to that figure.

Wedding DJ Rate Per Hour Versus Per Event

Some wedding DJs charge per hour, while others offer a per event rate. Which is right for you depends both on the difference in pricing, and how well the DJs event rate structure fits with your event.

For example, a DJ that normally charges $50 per hour for a wedding event might charge $300 event rate for a four hour wedding.

DJ Playlists Wedding and Cost

A good wedding DJ should be able to provide several services. While the bride and groom are often eager to pick out their own newlywed dance song as well as songs for the traditional father-daughter dance, and other wedding dances, most couples aren't ready to pick a wedding playlist for the entire ceremony and reception. That is where the professional DJ comes in.

A quality pro DJ playlist for weddings is already stocked with appropriate and popular songs. When the married couple's wedding playlist runs out, the mobile DJ steps in with a long list of wedding reception songs. The best wedding DJs watch the crowd and customize the reception playlist to the mood and preferences of the audience. A formal, older crowd is unlikely to appreciate the Chicken Dance, while a younger, boisterous group might find that song to be the highlight of the event.

To screen out cheap, low-quality DJs, ask questions about the above. Ask them to help you plan your wedding playlist. Ask them what songs are mood killers and what songs are great for planned wedding dances. A good DJ will have quality answers to them all. A shakier DJ might struggle for answers, or only be able to provide a Top 5 Most Popular wedding songs type of list.

Newly Weds First Dance Song

Mobile DJ Equipment and Rates

Also, be sure to ask about the mobile DJ equipment used by the disc jockey. A disk jockey that relies on the venue or hotel ballroom for some equipment should come cheaper than one that provides every element of the DJ setup. Additionally, the DJ that provides all of their own equipment doesn't have to worry about whether or not his gear will work with the house gear.

Such a DJ may also require a shorter setup time than one who needs time to figure out how to make his mobile DJ setup work with the hotel's equipment. They are also less likely to have any problems since they can rely on their own equipment and test it ahead of time, rather than trying to chase down ballroom staff to fix or repair broken or misconfigured equipment.

Ask questions and be sure that the DJ doesn't just say that they can handle your event, but that they seem comfortable and unsurprised by most of your questions and requests. Experienced DJs have seen it all, so only the craziest of inquires should take them off guard, while a new DJ might seem shocked that you want him to wear a tuxedo or special party hat.

In the end, choose the DJ who both makes you feel comfortable and has a rate that fits your budget. If none of your first round of choices meets those criteria, keep looking. DJ-ing is a popular small business to own which means that there are likely to be hundreds or thousands of DJs available in your area.


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