Wedding music is one of the most essential parts of any wedding.
It's the soundtrack to your special day.
The most common question couples have when organising wedding entertainment is whether to hire a band or a DJ.
You might know what you want, but with so many factors to consider, how do you know which is best for your wedding?
In this guide, we’ll explore the pros and cons of each option so you can decide what kind of wedding entertainment is best for your big day.
We’ll also list the benefits and average costs involved with each option so you can organise the perfect day your guests will be sure to love.
- Band Or DJ: What To Consider
- How Much Does A Wedding Band Cost?
- How Much Does A Wedding DJ Cost?
- Why You Should Hire A Band
- Why You Should Hire A DJ
- Wedding Band: Pros & Cons
- Wedding DJ: Pros & Cons
Without further ado, let’s dive in!
Band Or DJ: What To Consider
When choosing music for your wedding, you might be torn between hiring a band or a DJ.
Each option has its pros and cons—and while they may seem similar in some ways, they're pretty different.
Let's take a look at what you should consider when deciding whether to hire a band or a DJ for your wedding:
Consider your budget when deciding whether to hire a wedding band or DJ. If you have limited money to spend on music for the wedding, hiring a DJ or small bar may be the best option for you. However, if your budget is flexible and allows for more expensive entertainment options, you can afford a more professional DJ or a larger band. Consider asking for quotes from bars and DJs, then compare their prices.
The size and layout of your venue are also something to consider. Check to see if your venue has the space for a large dancefloor or the room to host several live musicians. Also, consider your platform's acoustics and their effect on specific music options.
Your guests' preferences:
If you're having a formal wedding with several older people, a classical band might work better than something more contemporary. If you're planning a wedding with younger guests in mind, they may prefer a dancefloor and the high-energy atmosphere a DJ can provide.
The kind of atmosphere you want:
Your choice of music helps to set the tone for your big day. Whether it's upbeat and energetic or slow and romantic, music can be used to guide your guests into the right mood.
The type of music you enjoy:
When choosing between DJs and bands, think about what kind of music you enjoy and the type of music you picture being played on your special day. If you’re particularly fond of electronic genres like pop, hip-hop or dance music, a DJ may be a better fit for you. But a band might be the way to go if you enjoy genres with more live instrumentation, like jazz, rock or funk.
How Much Does A Wedding Band Cost?
The cost of a wedding band varies depending on several factors but on average, a wedding band will cost around $2,500-$3,000.
A band will factor in the length of the wedding, equipment hire, travel distance and experience level into the cost.
Remember that the cost of a wedding band can also be affected by how many members are in the band.
A small three-piece trio will likely be more affordable than a seven-piece big band.
How Much Does A Wedding DJ Cost?
The cost of a wedding DJ varies depending on several factors, but on average, a wedding DJ will cost between $1,000 and $2,000.
Wedding DJs looking to build up their clientele and gain experience may charge as little as $500, whereas higher-end professionals can charge up to $4,000.
The length of the wedding, equipment hire, travel distance and level of experience will impact the cost of a DJ.
Why You Should Hire A Band
If you’re struggling to decide whether a band or a DJ is, here are some of the main benefits of hiring a band to perform at your wedding:
- Bands can often provide a more personalised experience than a DJ. If you're looking for something other than the typical cookie-cutter wedding, having your favourite band perform may be precisely what you need. They'll offer their unique spin on songs your guests will love hearing again.
- If you are looking for musicians to perform music at your ceremony and reception, wedding bands can typically cater for both options. A simple vocalist and guitarist can perform an acoustic rendition of a couple’s favourite song while the bride walks down the aisle.
- If certain songs mean something special for you and your partner – maybe something from when you first met or a song from your favourite movie – then having a band perform those songs can be a significant and intimate experience.
Why You Should Hire A DJ
If you’re unsure whether a band or a DJ is a better fit for your special day, here are some of the main benefits of hiring a DJ as your wedding entertainment:
- DJs can play music based on what mood they think would work best at any given moment during the evening so they can continuously keep everyone engaged and maintain good energy. They can play music that fits the mood of your wedding and adjust their sets as the night progresses.
- A good DJ will have access to an extensive library of songs from different genres and decades to accommodate guests' requests at any time in the evening.
- Generally, a DJ can play music longer than a band because they don’t require the breaks or rest periods that live musicians need. Bars typically only provide one to three hours of entertainment, while DJs often play for an entire five-hour reception.
Wedding Band: Pros & Cons
|Interactive and engaging||More expensive|
|A more personalised experience||Take longer to set up|
|More traditional||More people to cater for|
|Setlist tailored to your wedding||More equipment and take up more space|
|Perfect for ceremonies and receptions||Need to take breaks|
|Put their spin on songs you love|
Wedding DJ: Pros & Cons
|More affordable||Less interactive and intimate|
|Access to an extensive library of music||Less appropriate for older guests|
|Versatile and flexible music setlist|
|Can take requests from guests|
|Less time to set up|
|Take up less space|
We hope this post has helped you decide whether to hire a band or DJ for your wedding! When determining whether you should hire a bar or a DJ for your wedding, it's important to remember that the choice is entirely up to you and your partner. Both wedding bands and DJs provide fantastic entertainment for your special day, and your guests will love and appreciate whichever you decide.