Written by Wedding Photographer in Perth – Ingrid Kjelling


Nobody wants their wedding day to be stressful or feel rushed. In fact, if you’re anything like me, you believe that wedding days should be nothing but fun and enjoyable! This is why I’ve decided to share my best wedding day timeline tips in this guide! To help you start planning your own stress-free wedding day timeline, for your unique celebration.


Step 1: Make a list of all the things.

Before you can start putting together your wedding day timeline, you need to figure out what you want your wedding day to look like. I suggest sitting down together to write a list of all the stuff that you know for sure will happen during the day. Like the getting ready part, the ceremony, etc. You should also write a list of any meaningful traditions you want to include + all the other fun little things you want to be a part of your celebration.

I highly encourage you to think outside the box here. And only include things that really matter to you. These days wedding celebrations can take on whatever shape your heart desires. I mean, as long as you sign the official paperwork, there is no wrong way to do the rest!

So if you want to play board games, include a petting zoo, have a wedding piñata instead of a wedding cake, Keep your bouquet instead of ‘tossing it’, Scrap the speeches to allow more dance floor time. Do it! Just don’t let others dictate your day based on their ideas of a ‘perfect wedding’ because their perfect wedding is probably not the same as your idea of a perfect wedding. Make your wedding uniquely yours and I promise you you’ll have the best time ever!


Here is a list of common wedding day ‘sections’  and important bits to consider to get your own list started:

  • Morning Activities
  • Getting Ready Activities
  • First Look (portrait session before the ceremony)
  • Ceremony and Ceremony length
  • Post-ceremony hugs and congratulations
  • Cocktail Hour (before ceremony, after ceremony?)
  • Special Traditions (family, religious, cultural)
  • Family Photos / Group Photos
  • Bridal Party Photos
  • Couples Portraits
  • Reception / Reception Entry
  • Food and style of reception (casual cocktail, sit down, buffet, etc)
  • Speeches / Toasts
  • Reception Traditions (cake cutting, first dance, father-daughter dance, special religious/cultural traditions)
  • Wedding Games
  • Reception Curfew

Step two: Think about the logistics of your wedding day

The last thing you want to do on your wedding day is for things to run late because you forgot to factor in the correct amount of time it takes to get from one location to another. To avoid these stress-inducing mistakes make sure to add the proper amount of travel time into your timeline.

Use google maps to get an accurate estimate of the travel time between different locations 

You can use google maps to get an estimate of how long it will take to drive between all the different locations. getting ready to ceremony, the ceremony to portrait location, Ceremony to reception, etc.) To get the most accurate result make sure to choose the ‘depart at’ option to add in your wedding day and relevant time of day. This will factor in the usual traffic at this hour and is especially important if your locations are in high traffic areas. 




Check the sunset time for your specific wedding date and location

Photography is all about light, and it is no secret that many wedding photographers love shooting portraits during the golden hour (the hour before sunset). Whenever logistically possible I highly recommend setting away a bit of time for golden hour portraits, especially if you’re after those warm golden tones and backlit photos. Your wedding photographer will be able to give you advice on what time would be the optimal time to sneak away for some golden hour portraits on your day!



The exact sunset time of your wedding will depend on where you are getting married, and what time of year your celebration is. The Perth winter sunset is typically sometime between 5-6 pm, while the summer sunsets are closer to 7-7.30pm. To check the sunset time for your wedding date simply google ‘Your wedding location/city + Sunset + Date’. 



Step three: Say no to wedding day stress – add lots of buffer time!

Weddings rarely go as planned, and you’ll be much better off by adding in lots of buffer-time between events compared to trying to fit in as much as possible in the shortest amount of time.

Having plenty of buffer time will allow your day to run smoothly despite delays, unexpected events, and unexpected traffic. It also adds the opportunity for a bit of fun spontaneity. Most importantly, however, it will give you time to take it all in and truly enjoy your moments. It’s kind of a win-win situation because if everything goes as planned you can always spend those extra minutes mingling with your guests.

Step four: Putting it all together

Once you’ve got your list of everything you want to do, how long it will take you to travel between locations, when the sun will set on your wedding day it’s time to put it all together. If you’re not sure exactly how much time you should set aside for each section ask your wedding photographer as specific timings will vary from wedding to wedding!

That’s it. Let me know how you go and if you’d like any assistance planning your Perth wedding timeline