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Frequently Asked Questions
Why should I choose Fervent Designs?
We are THE ONE-STOP SHOP for weddings and events! That means our team provides many event related services such as planning, design, photography, DJ, and more. Choose as much or as little as you wish. You sign one contract and pay only one retainer.* We plan with your needs, vision, and budget in mind.
*Some exclusions apply.
I'm getting married. Do I need a Wedding Planner, Wedding Coordinator, or both?
Good question that many don’t understand! It all depends on how much help you want, need and can afford and when you want services to start. Everyone is different, and no two weddings are alike.
A PLANNER will help you plan your wedding and make the process easier by walking you through the entire planning process, going into depth about every detail, and providing professional insight, especially on the hard stuff. At Fervent Designs, from the moment you book with us, the planner will wear many hats. She is your advocate, your mediator, your negotiator, your designer, your confidant, and your voice of reason. The planner can assist you with the entire wedding planning process- from choosing your dream venue, to making sure the florist provides top quality flowers to meet your expectations, to planning the menu, to calling the shots on your big day. Together, you will have monthly meetings and will access the planning system, your Fervent Designs team will be by your side in every step of your wedding journey. We will guide you and lead you in the right direction to keep you organized, sane, and ensure that you do not break the bank. If you want lots of hand holding, planning is for you. The earlier you book, the more help you will get.
A COORDINATOR is a bit different. Coordination is our most cost-effective option. With coordination or wedding management, you plan your own wedding, and a professional wedding specialist steps in at the end to execute what you planned. At Fervent Designs, our wedding management (formerly month-of coordination) services begin about 1 month before your wedding date. This will allow the wedding specialist to help ensure that all preparations for your wedding are solid and ready. It will includes to do lists which counts down your wedding day to ensure that no detail is left out. A custom itinerary that includes EVERY single detail of your will be created and shared with all of the vendors that will be finalized for details on the wedding day. The wedding specialist will take what you have planned so far and perfect everything to your standards.
At Fervent Designs, wedding management services are included in wedding planning and partial planning. However, planning services are not included in wedding management . If your budget is tight and/or only need help at the end, then, wedding management may be perfect (formerly coordination). If you want a mix of both planning and management, then partial planning is probably what you need.
We have options for every budget and can always create something custom for you. We can discuss what is best for your situation in a consultation. After you book wedding planning or wedding management, you may add on any other service you wish.
Is a Venue Coordinator the same as a Wedding Coordinator or Wedding Planner?
NO! THEY ARE NOT THE SAME, but many people confuse the two! Most venues offer coordinators to assist you with your wedding. You may call them what you wish, BUT THEY do not provide the same services as a true wedding coordinator. They are DEFINITELY NOT the same as hiring a Fervent Designs Wedding Planner/Specialist/Manager.
Venue coordinators report to the venue (hall, resort, hotel, church, restaurant...). Their job is to make sure the venue provides you and all of their clients with the services you contracted them for. They will be there to make sure the venue is accessible, to ensure the food is served (if that is under their remit), to regulate the room temperature, to control the lighting, to ensure the location's safety procedures are being followed, and to make sure that you comply to your contract. Many venues have several events on each particular date, so they may be splitting their time between your event, their day to day duties, and your WEDDING.
In a perfect world, your wedding specialist (planner, manager, coordinator, whatever) and the venue coordinator should collaborate to make your day go off without a hitch. But, at Fervent Designs, your Wedding Planner will be there for weeks/months to cater to YOU. The Fervent Designs Wedding Planner works for YOU and with you! We can and will gladly assist with take care of the items the venue coordinator does (if they are not present or of they go missing), but our main role is to cater to the couple.
At Fervent Designs, our couples are our first priority! In the weeks leading up to your wedding, our team will work hard to get to know you and understand your vision for your special day. They create the wedding weekend timeline and provide instructions and details to the wedding party guests, and your entire team of vendors, including the venue (and the venue coordinator). We do the legwork. Therefore, when your big day comes, your wedding coordinator is there to execute your vision, to field questions, to manage things behind the scenes so that you can relax, get married, and enjoy your party.
A true wedding planner/specialist/manager should be your advocate, managing everything and everyone to ensure that you get what YOU want. No only does the planner work with you to create your wedding timeline, but on your wedding day, we manage the timeline, and hold everyone accountable to be sure that we follow the plan. He or she will put out any fires that may arise. On your big day, you should be pampered and catered to. A Wedding Planner/Specialist ensures that that happens. Clearly, this level of preparation takes more than a DAY. So no, Fervent Designs does not do DAY-OF Coordination.
How do I know if Fervent Designs is the right fit for me?
Schedule a chat! We offer free consultations for potential clients. Check out our social media. Also, read about us through our website and look through our work. We are here for you as a friend and mentor during your wedding journey. You can also see what past clients have said about us through our reviews found at these trusted wedding planning websites such as The Knot and Wedding Wire. We are a faith-based company who plans weddings for real people - with passion and love. We are personalized, convenient, and budget- friendly. We pride our selves on our relatinships and relatability. We are looking to work with couples who appreciate in the values we embody.
Will you take over my wedding?
Only if you let us... This is your wedding, not ours. We are your guides, your partners. Every event we do is different. Every couple is unique. And our planning style is different by design. At Fervent Designs, our goal is to help you bring YOUR VISION into reality. Give us the vision, and trust us. We will help you help yourself. We are here to help you - as much or as little as you desire. All of our weddings are different because all of our couples have different visions. We take pride in showcasing your love and telling your story. No, we will not take over- unless that is your request. You can be as involved and as hands on as you wish. We will work within your comfort zone and plan your day, YOUR way utilizing our professional support, processes, resources and expertise.
If I don’t live in Houston, can I still work with you?
Although we love our home town couples, that doesn’t mean we walk away from everyone else! We welcome couples from out of town and we’re open to travel wherever you wish to take us. DESTINATION WEDDINGS give us opportunities to travel the world, learn new cultures and venues, and learn! And we LOVE BEACHES.
No matter where you are located, we can work with you. We have many military couples, out of town couples, and we specialize in destination weddings.
Efficiency and virtual processes are key to our business. For your convenience, we utilize cloud-based professional event planning software, a virtual teleconference system, VoIP phone sysems, and electronic payment processing tools. We are green and quite mobile, so technology under-girds all of our processes.
Is it too early or too late to hire a Wedding Planner?
There no set time for when you should hire a wedding planner or coordinator! All clients have hired us at different times in the past based on their needs and budget. It is NEVER TOO LATE or TOO EARLY to get help with your wedding! But, generally, the earlier we start the more time, frustration and money you will save. Also, some dates and seasons fill up very quickly, so if you want Fervent Designs to be a part of your wedding or event, book your date ASAP without delay.
There are always exceptions, but here are general guidelines (subject to availability of course):
Full Wedding Planning: To be effective, we recommend that those who desire full wedding planning to book no less than 6 months in advance of their wedding date.
Partial Wedding Planning: Partial Planning can be booked up to 3 months away from your wedding date.
Wedding Coordination: Coordination can be booked up to one month away from your date (subject to availability).
Do you only plan weddings?
Although our specialty is weddings, we also plan OTHER EVENTS such as birthday parties, baby showers, graduation parties, networking events, charity events, and many more. Believe it or not, we started out planning smaller social events before we moved into weddings. Also, our founder and lead planner managed training and corporate events for over a decade before creatign Fervent Designs; needless to say, we can plan ANYTHING. Need our help with an event, just schedule a consultation.
How do I book with Fervent Designs?
1. Book a consultation.
Do you plan small weddings or elopements?
Fervent Designs plans weddings in ALL sizes, styles, and budgets. Due to COVID-19, we have created simple and affordable packages for Micro weddings (weddings with under 50 guests), elopments (weddings with only the couple), and virtual weddings (weddings that are live streamed). We can host weddings at your home, family estate, church, or the venue of your choice. Call now for more details.
Are you planning weddings and events during the COVID-19 Pandemic?
Fervent Designs is operating during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. We are continuing working with our booked clients as usual. We are also accepting new clients for events through December 2022. To assist couples who have had to alter their plans, we have added Micro Wedding packages to our list of offerings.
In order to help slow the spread of COVID-19 and keep our team safe, we are conducting all of our meetings and consultations virtually from our in-home offices until further notice. The only exception is venue walkthroughs and catering tastings for our booked clients.
form at www.FerventDesigns.com/book-consultation. If you need to schedule a quick phone call, please book a "Discovery Call', and we will call you at the designated time.
regards to event planning and execution, and are asking our clients and
creative partners to do the same.
What is a Micro Wedding?
A micro wedding is any ceremony and/or reception with less than 50 total guests. It has also been called a "Minimony" or an "Intimate Wedding. This can be done as a first wedding, combined with an elopement, streamed live, or done to celebrate an anniversary vow renewal. The event starts with a wedding ceremony, and can be followed by a smaller version of a typical wedding reception. The event can take place at your home, yard, family estate, beach, church, hall, destination, or the venue of your choice. The sky is the limit!
How do I know if Fervent Designs is a good fit for me?
Fervent Designs is the one-stop shop for weddings and events. We are all about telling each couple or client's story in their unique manner. No event we create is cookie cutter in any way.
If you are you down to earth, appreciate truthful communication and a no-nonsense approach to planning your event, then Fervent Designs might be the planner for you!
Our company is family owned and operated, so we value family and are built on strong values and ethics. Our CEO and Lead Planner, Rich, is THE REAL DEAL! She is calm, down to earth, and full of personality! Planning your wedding with her will be a blast. But, you had better believe that she tells it like it is. Honesty is the ONLY way. And, she stands by her timelines and executes the only way she knows how- with passion and love.
No matter who you are, how much money you have, or what your vision is, every event has a budget. Rather big or small, Fervet Designs can handle it all. And we strive to keep you IN-BUDGET. We plan and design each event with our couple's vision and budget at the forefront of our minds. We understand that you may not know all of the behind the scenes details and logistics; therefore, we EDUCATE our clients. We teach you to strategize and prioritize so that you may get the most bang for your buck.
- Not Interested in DIY:
You want their family and friends to ENJOY the event, not work at it and stress all day. You, your friends, and/or your family should not have to bear the burden of setting up and cleaning up. Instead of dealing with the risk and headache that could occur by attempting to do it yourself (DIY), we advise our clients to hire professionals who will collaborate to create a seamless event experience. Yes, we expect you to PLAN with us in advance. But, on the day of, we recommend that you let the professionals handle the hard work, so you can be a guest on the day.
- Hiring Professonal, Reliable Vendor Partners:
Our clients need, and deserve talented and professional vendors. Since we are a one-stop shop, the Fervent Deisgns in-house team can assist with many of the elements you need for your wedding or event, including planning, decor and rentals, florals, entertainment, photo, video, and gifts. This is very convenent and saves you time, stress, and money. In addition to our in-house team, we also have a host of amazing vendor partners who we will recommend. Therefore, your Fervent Designs planner will take the guess work out of hiring vendors by providing your a list of pre-vetted vendors who match your needs, style, and budget.
-Expect Mutual Respect and Trust.
Teamwork makes the dream work! A successful event hinges on effective communication and a great working partnership! We pride ourselves on our relationships, logistics, and organization. Our clients trust and value our expertise and allow us to partner with them to plan their events strategically, using our tried and true, processes and systems. Of course, we always have our clients' best interest at heart. As a Fervent Designs client, we will forever be in your corner. Our team will operate with transparency and will remain respectful and attentive to your goals, needs, vision, budget, and time.
Will I have to use vendors from your list?
The Fervent Designs team is here to help you navigate through the wedding planning process by offering professional guidance via our tried and true systems, processes, experienced advice, and other resources. This is your wedding and we will never take over and make decisions for you. We will GUIDE you through the process. Per your request, our Planners will recommend talented event professionals who fit your style, vision, needs, and budget. Typically, the vendors we recommend have worked with us in the past and provided stellar service and experience for our past clients, so we recommend them time and time again. However, you are always welcome to choose another vendor of your choice as long as they are professional, insured, and are allowed on-site at your venue.
Do you provide "Day of Coordination Only"?
We have found that "DAY OF" Coordination service does not truly exist because it takes WEEKS to do all of the prep-work and research necessary to execute an event to the caliber that our couples have come to know, love, and expect.
After spending lots of time and money on your wedding, you deserve to relax and enjoy your big day.
Our most basic service is the "Fervent Wedding Management", which is formerly known as Month of Coordination. This service covers timelines and logistics and includes weekly meetings to get you situated one month before your wedding. To create a seamless day for you, the Fervent Designs team must start working on your behalf at least 5 weeks out.
Of course, we take care of the normal "day of" items; however, majority of the work that Fervent Designs does takes place the weeks and months in advance of the wedding, not just the 10 hours or more worked on the actual wedding day.
Prior to our first meeting, your Wedding Specialist will examine all of your planning documents, contracts, invoices, and details. Wedding Management (formerly month-of coordination) is an investment in everything you've worked so hard to plan. Therefore, we must prepare FERVENTLY. Anything less than this really does not allow Fervent Designs to excute properly. As a result, Fervent Designs does not offer "Day of Coordiantion" since it does not set up our couple or our team for a successful, seamless event.
Note: See "Is a Venue Coordinator the same as a Wedding Coordinator or Wedding Planner?" for more details.
What is "Wedding Management"?
At Fervent Designs, effective January 2021, our Month of Coordination package has been re-named "Fervent Wedding Management". There is so much more to it than just what happens on the day, and things also happen in advance of one-month. We understand that every wedding is different, and each couple has different needs. So we wanted to create a offering that is relevant and delivers what each couple and their vendors need.
"Wedding Management" is a service designed for couples who have planned their wedding on their own but want a professional to execute the event so that they can be a guest on the day. Wedding Management allows you to be able celebrate with your family and friends and not stress or worry about event logistics, timelines, and vendors.
Think of Wedding Management as your personal insurance policy that protects all of the time and money that you invested into your wedding. Your Wedding Specialist (formerly Wedding Coordinator) will work hard to ensure that everything you planned comes to fruition. At Fervent Designs, we say, "We slay your day, your way." Therefore, our wedding management service is a protection of your investment. We will ensure your wedding day goes the way you envisioned it. And, if there are any emergencies, we will handle it. You will have a hired professional in your corner to handle all of the last-minute details with ease.
On your wedding day, you should only concern yourself with getting glammed up, walking down the aisle, and saying, “I do!” Like our name implies, our staff is “passionate about your wedding”, and we want your big day to go off without a hitch!
Beginning about 5 weeks out we will review all of your wedding documents and will meet to "kick off" your event management. Two weeks before your wedding, we will act as touchpoint for all your vendors. Then, on your big day, we will execute and handle everything behind the scenes.
What should you be doing: Relaxing! Getting married! Enjoying yourself! Creating memories with your family and friends. And, of course, PLEASE TURN UP!!!
What you WON'T be doing: Worrying and running around.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who are we?
What does the price include?
The price on our private cruises include the cost of skipper, cook, meals and drinks on board, including moderate consumption of alcoholic beverages, fuel, fresh water, bed linen and bath towel, auxiliary boat with outboard engine, fishing equipment, snorkeling, use of kayaks/paddle board and final cleaning.
Prices do not include transfers to/from Panama, personal entry tax to the county Guna Yala ($20/person), the rate of the port ($2/person). We can arrange all the transfers for you if you want, you can be picked up from your hotel in Panama or directly on the airport (private transfer).
"I think it's a little bit expensive..."
Our prices are fully adapted to the market and are justified based on the following criteria:
Catamarans cost as much or more than a big house and are definitely much more expensive to maintain.
Our catamarans are the most modern and comfortable boats boats with professional crew in the San Blas islands, the boats have also a range of amenities on board, so the price can never be comparable to a guest house. However, the experience will never be the same either. Our sailing trips ar simply unique.
When you travel with us, our all inclusive catamaran charters are offered with a full crew consisting of captain, cook and a 3rd. assistant depending on the number of guests on board, thats a total of 3 crew that are at your disposal 24 hours and are responsible for ensuring service, safety and maintenance of the ship.
Our catamaran charters is San Blas, are all inclusive, which means you do not have to worry about any extra expense once onboard. We offer breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as natural beverages (moderate consumption of alcoholic beverages). Meals always represent an important part of the budget for a land-based vacation, plus you have to prepare them by yourself, but we cook for you! Remember that an all inclusive charter service is always the best option for traveling and sailing, and after all, the most convenient and economical too.
*** Catamaran or monohull? which is best for sailing the Caribbean
What are the cost of the transfers in and out of San Blas islands?
We take care of all your transfers in and out. Simply notify us your pickup/drop off location, either in or around Panama city or directly at the international airport if you arrive latest 10 am.
Land transport will take you around 3.5 hours and cost is $70/person/way including. the water taxi to the location where our catamaran will be anchored. Pickup. time is 5:30 AM at your home/hotel/residence or location you specify to us. Boarding the catamaran is around 10 Am depending on how busy the port is. On return day, expect to be in Panama City before 12:00 AM.
Flying means bypassing all border chaos and landing in the most incredible part of San Blas, far away from the islands filled with day tourists from Panama. The catamaran will be anchored next to the run nway. You can depart from Albrook international airport in the morning and flight time is 50 minutes. On checkout date, departure is the same time as your previous landing time.
When and how do I make the reservation payment?
You are making a pre reservation, no money will be asked until we confirm your dates and catamaran.
Will there be other people on the catamaran if I book a private charter?
When booking a private catamaran sailing charter it is only you and the crew wich composed of captain and cook. For larger groups we do incorportate a Kuna Indigeous to help with deck work and act as a guide and translator so that our guets can venture deeper into de Kuna culture and communities if they so desire.
Do we have to be afraid for sea sickness?
Where will we board the catamaran and where will we sail to?
Make sure you check our proposed itineraries: 2,5 and 7 night sailing charters.
Depending on your starting point and the number of days you will be with us, we will adapt the itinerary to make the most of your stay. In any case, our trips cover the most emblematic places of the archipelago of San Blas, and Cayo Limón, Cayo Coco Bandero and Cayos Holandeses.
When I can travel?
You can travel whenever you want! San Blas is an exceptional place to visit and sail all year round.
Is it possible to windsurf, kitesurf, surf, snorkel or fish in San Blas?
Join our adventure catamarans In San Blas and practice all the snorkeling, fishing, paddle boarding and kayaking you desire!
How is food onboard?
How are the meals for kids?
What is "moderate consumption of Alcohol"?
Children have special discount?
Children under 12 pay 50% of the charter price.
Can I pay for the trip in euros?
Our prices are quoted in USD but we accept also Euro.
Can I cancel my reservation?
Covid-19: check special booking conditions to facilitate your reservations.
Do I need any special vaccinations?
Please check with the foreign ministry of your home country or government agencies in health matters the specifications to travel to this area of the Caribbean.
What documentation do I need to bring?
What do I need to pack?
Bring only a few things in your bag, you dont need much in Paradise.
What currency is used and where can I exchange money?
The currency in Panama is Balboa, equivalent to 1 dollar. Both currencies are used interchangeably. You do not need to change your USD.
How much money should I bring?
Our cruises are all inclusive on board, so the extra expenses once in San Blas are minimal.
What is the difference between a shared cabin charter and a private charter?
With a cabin charter, you aren’t renting the whole boat, just your cabin with private bathroom, when you go for the private charter, you will have the entire catamaran for your own use.
Can I charter a catamaran in Las Perlas?
How is life on board, how is a typical day in San Blas?
Life on board is simply fascinating. The absolute connection to the sea in a tropical paradise stimulate your senses, natural medicine for your body and your mind. However, you should know that a sailing charter is not a vacation in a hotel. It is very important to understand this concept to ensure proper conduct on board.
Tansfers in and out of San Blas?
Internet on board?
Some of our boats let you connect to the Internet, some other do not have that option, but do not worry, you can either go internet roaming with you own phone in San Blas or do the absolute best which is to buy a Digicel sim card in any convenient shop in Panama City and top it up with an internet plan. it is very cheap and you will have a full internet for just a few $.
What payment methods are available and is it safe to pay you?
Covid-19: special cancellation conditions to facilitate your reservations
We know that many of our clients will fear, in the event of re-confinement or border closures, losing their deposit or being offered a new postponement of their vacation.
Covid-19: when can I fly into Panama and do I need to be Covid tested?
Starting October 11th 2020 you may fly into Panama freely, but note that to comply with Panamanian Covid-19 regulations you may either:
Covid-19: our measures to minimase the impact of Covid-19
In order to maintain a safe environment and address customer concerns, following measures have been implemented
- We ask the crew to measure the temperature before charter, wash hands regularly as well as using sanitisers.
- All technical staff at check in wear masks.
- On the yachts, sanitiser suitable for hands and surfaces are available.
- We disinfect all flat surfaces in between all charters.
- Cleaning staff wear masks and gloves.
- We disinfect all exterior cushions.
Are the San Blas islands open for sailboat charters?
We have been asked this question many times and always our answer is "yes".
What is the best sailing itinerary for sailing the San Blas islands?
Useful tips for your next trip to the San Blas Islands
Why is your Pina Colada so famous?
The simplicity in elaboration and the quality of our readily-available ingredients: pineapple, coconut and local Abuelo account for our delicious pina colada. Learn more
How long should we stay?
Any number of days is good, but for those travelers aiming to visit the legendary Dutch Cays or Coco Bandero Cays we recommend a minimum of 4 nights. Catamaran Adventures San Blas offers total flexibility in number of nights booked.
Do you offer any discounts?
Yes, claim your disount for long duration stays:
What makes the San Blas islands special?
Do you offer any discounts?
Yes, there are discounts available depending on how long you sail:
Christmas and Easter. What is the price for those holidays?
Can I pay with Bitcoin and Ethereum: Cryptocurrency
Are your catamaran sailing charters eco-friendly?
Why are your catamarans not close to the shore and the port?
If you come by road, the transfer company will drop you off at one of the ports of Carti which is one of the ports at San Blas.
What’s the tipping etiquette for captain ans cook?
Catamaran charter tips run from 5% to 15%. Final amount depends on the effort shown by the captain and cook and how he/she has improved the experience. You may give the tip directly to the captain or cook via cash or through us and we will hand it to whom you consider.