This is one of the most stressed over parts of the day. My biggest advice is to sit down, go through every scenario in your mind, and nail down your schedule before the actual day. My second biggest piece of advice is to allow yourself some wiggle room, because most weddings don't follow the schedule to a tee. This isn't to say that you should plan your day around photography. While I will give tips if you are interested, it is most important to have structure ahead of time so you can enjoy your day and focus on what's really important. Here are a few pointers to take into consideration or toss:
Make a schedule.
This seems pretty standard, but thinking through an actual schedule and then sharing it with everyone closely involved will save you so much headache. I've been there, the poor bride is overwhelmed because no one knows the schedule and is asking her questions every few minutes. The bridal party is scattered or no where to be found because they don't know where they should be. This results in tons of time that I have nothing to photograph, which is fun for no one. Your photos are important but also an investment and I want you to be happy with the finished product.
Decide where to prioritize your time.
Deciding where to set your coverage timeline can be stressful. You want to make sure you have everything covered that needs to be done before the ceremony, but you're worried about leaving enough time after. There are things you should consider beforehand to decide where your time is most important.
First look or not? Couples that plan to do a first look and their photos together before the ceremony will usually get all of the bridal party and family photos out of the way as well so they can just relax and go the reception with their guests immediately after the ceremony. If you don't want to do a first look, it may be in your best interest to do the individual bridal parties (Bride w/ bridesmaids, Groom w/groomsmen) before the ceremony to save time after so your guests aren't waiting for too long and because you'll be ready to unwind a bit and recharge before the reception activities.
The time group photos take. A schedule is vital for group portraits. If everyone is on time and ready to go, bridal party portraits usually don't take more than thirty minutes for each group. It's always good to have some cushion, and if it's before the ceremony there are always ways to fill in waiting times, such as photographing details. The ones that vary are family formals. While these photos are super quick, there are many factors that go into it, such as size of family, getting and keeping everyone together, and little ones.
Prioritizing photos of the two of you. It's quite common to put these photos on the back burner, and it makes me sad, because they will be some of the most important ones to you. I've noticed that especially at weddings without a first look, after your ceremony and all of the photos after with family and friends, it's tiring and the couple are just ready to relax and enjoy the rest of the day and usually cut out time for their photos. We can get really great photos in a short amount of time, so if this becomes the case and you're ready for photos to be over with, I really recommend putting aside a small amount of time so you don't regret it later. Another option you can do whether you have done a first look and photos together already or not, is to take a break during some free time at reception to take some photos. Not only can you take advantage of some beautiful lighting during golden hour, but you can also get away from the party and take a moment together to take a breath and take it all in.
Reception Photos. The reception is something that can be confusing to plan for with limited coverage. A lot of times people allow a lot of excess time after and sacrifice time before to make sure it is covered. This just depends on your priorities for photos. You may want to center most of your time for later in the day if you are planning to do all of your formal photos after the ceremony. If you are planning to do all of the formals before, I would suggest prioritizing more time at the beginning of the day. I would also take into account how much you are planning for your reception. The reception might be a high priority to you with a lot of events you want photographed. If you aren't planning as much for your reception, keep in mind that it will be hours of the same view and people dancing, and there are only so many photos that will be unique enough to use. If you plan to limit your reception coverage but want all of the events covered, I would recommend planning them early in the reception.