Inevitably, more money will be spent than anticipated when planning a wedding. If you've never organised a large-scale event, figuring out your wedding budget might be daunting. Without knowing the value you'll receive for your money, it's tough to put a price on something. When a couple's dream wedding exceeds their financial means, complications arise.
Knowing and keeping to your financial constraints is essential, whether planning a small, intimate ceremony and reception or a significant, extravagant event. But they learned that it's not as easy as it seems. The budgeting for the wedding is causing me a lot of stress, even though typically adept at conserving money.
It's essential to plan every detail of the wedding, from the location of the ceremony and reception to the officiant, flowers, and refreshments. The trick is deciding which is most crucial and how you want your money distributed among those parts.
Several things are worth thinking about:
Choose A Venue Wisely
Venues that can accommodate both the ceremony and the reception are an excellent option to think about. Additionally, think about having the wedding somewhere exotic. Weddings in Fiji, Bali, and Thailand may have lower per-guest costs than those in Australia.
Be sure that the package includes all you need, as it may be challenging to make changes to the options within the packages without the price skyrocketing for a destination wedding. There may be decorations and furnishings available from the venue, or you can get creative and construct your own. To get the flowers from the ceremony to the reception, you'll need a strong person to help. Don't go out of your way to get different flowers for each occasion.
Consider Ways To Cut Down on Food and Beverage Prices
Suppose neither of you is an avid drinker. In that case, you can limit the alcoholic beverages available at your celebration to beer and wine of higher quality rather than expensive spirits and mixed drinks. If you're not a big eater but still want to socialise with your guests, a cocktail reception might save you a lot of money compared to a formal sit-down dinner.
Get in on the food truck craze without breaking the bank by serving only one main dish. Think about whether or not you want to give out wedding favours.
Do you, or does anyone you know have baking chops that would make a wonderful wedding cake? Notifying the vendor that you are ordering for a wedding can increase the price, so opting for a less expensive dessert option like cupcakes or doughnuts is a good idea.
Find the Perfect Dress On Sale
You can save a lot of money by buying a pre-owned or discounted wedding gown. If you plan on having a large number of bridesmaids in matching dresses, you may want to enquire about bulk pricing. Renting a wedding dress or a dress for a bridesmaid is a great way to save on the overall expense of the big day and the associated dry cleaning.
Think About Alternative Entertainment
Hiring a live band, string quartet, or DJ is a great idea, but the costs may add up quickly. Image connecting your iPod with a playlist you created on Spotify. A wedding playlist can be made in advance, and attendees can be asked to contribute their favourite songs.
Get Your Guests To Post Photos On Social Media
If you'd rather bask at the moment rather than plan ahead, you might consider coming up with a hashtag and encouraging attendees to use it when posting about the event on social media. Alternatively, you might all take turns using a Polaroid camera to capture pictures of each other laughing and smiling. It is possible to save money by using a photo booth.
Go With E-Invites Instead Of Paper Invitations
When compared to the cost and hassle of sending out traditional save-the-date cards and wedding invitations, inviting guests through social media, email, or in-person conversations is a far more convenient and economical option. Print invitations just for people who don't use social media.
Consider The Cheaper Off-Season Time Of Year
"Consider having an off-season or mid-week wedding if the time of year you get married isn't as essential to you as other aspects of your big day. During the winter, several establishments host unique events.
Skip The Engagement Party And Kitchen Tea
Consider whether you need to host an engagement party, kitchen tea, or stag and hen do. It's possible to have a single party that accommodates all of these, or you can choose to forgo some if they aren't essential. An alternative to the traditional separate hens and buck's parties is to have one big bash for both.
Honeymoon Where You Have Your Wedding
When the wedding and honeymoon are planned for the exact location, the two events can be combined into one memorable experience. If you are reserving a hotel for your honeymoon, don't forget to mention that it is your honeymoon to receive a possible upgrade or exceptional honeymoon amenities. Have integrity when dealing with vendors. Don't be shy about being honest with the vendor when asking for price quotes to cover your costs. If you are interviewing bakers for your wedding cake, specify your budget and any specifics you have in mind. Keep your mind open, but don't allow the vendors to convince you to spend more than you can afford. You can do this with multiple suppliers until you find a deal you like.
Get Help From The Family
You're very fortunate if your parents can contribute to your wedding costs. In the beginning stages of planning, it is important to enquire as to the extent to which they are willing to contribute.
Have A Safety Net
Finally, be prepared for the possibility that you may need to spend a bit more than you had initially estimated. To avoid going over budget, it's a good idea to set up an emergency fund of $1,000 to $5,000.
Determine The Kind Of Wedding You Want.
What do you envision for your wedding day? A chic downtown loft for the party? A get-together of loved ones in the form of a backyard barbeque? A formal banquet in a luxury hotel? Feel free to draw ideas from the many weddings you've attended, watched on TV, or browsed on Pinterest if you're still stuck for motivation. Tell me what made them great or what made you dislike them.
Focus on the big picture rather than the details at the moment. Instead, when trying to organise a wedding on a tight budget, you should focus on the mood you want to create.
FAQs About Wedding
When creating a wedding budget, examine which expenses to include based on how much you can reasonably afford. When planning your wedding budget, you must clarify who pays for what with your future husband. When making a budget, examine what is most important to you.
It would be best if you had the things that make you joyful at your wedding, whether it be a beautiful dress, makeup, fantastic decor, stunning photographs, or the best food and drinks for your guests. Creating a wedding budget can be difficult.
Have The Wedding Budget Talk.
The wedding budget should be discussed and reviewed by all parties contributing financially (bride, groom, and parents). This could be the first time you and your potential spouse work together on a budget. Wow, that was a priceless opportunity. Your ability to have an open, honest discussion about your wedding budget will set the stage for many fantastic, low-cost date nights once you're married.
Although discussing finances might be awkward, think about how much easier it would be not to have to worry about how to pay for your wedding on your fifth anniversary. When they say budget, they don't just mean the overall amount of money you have available; they also represent the amount you should allocate to each category.
They recommend allocating a certain amount of the overall wedding budget to each of the following items:
- Dress and Tux: 8%
- Ceremony: 12%
- Reception: 55%
- Photography: 10%
- Miscellaneous/Cushion: 5%
Just adjust the percentages to reflect your level of interest in each category.
Decide What Is Non-Negotiable.
Use the poll results to help you and your fiance pick the top three things for the wedding. Your priorities can be sensible and extravagant, like having an outdoor reception, a plated surf and turf meal, an abundance of flowers, and a live jazz band.
It would be best if you both took the time to sit down and decide what you want, whether you do so individually or together. It would be best if you based your spending on that goal.
Limit Your Guest List.
At other times, little is more. Though it would be nice to have a guest list as extensive as the royal couple's, remember that each additional person will cost you money. It may be unkind to say so, but you guys, it's the truth! The expense of your wedding will rise exponentially as you invite more and more people.
A smaller, more personal wedding could be an excellent way to cut costs. If you and your fiancé aren't very attached to having a large wedding guest list, consider slashing it by 20% and then again by another 20%. One alternative is to have a larger ceremony and invite only close relatives and friends to the reception.
Host the Ceremony Or Reception At Home Or Outside.
The reception hall takes up almost half of the total cost of the wedding. Why not make your own house, your parent's house, or even a public park the setting for your next trim? There is no need for a lavish, over-the-top location if the ceremony and reception can be held outdoors in a unique place.
If you insist on holding the event outside, you had better have a solid plan B ready just in case. The day might be ruined by anything from rain to scorching temperatures, so always be prepared.
Ask Friends And Family To Exchange Skills For Presents.
You can forego wedding gifts altogether by soliciting the services of clever and organised friends and family members. Would you rather have free live music or a stand mixer?
Utilise your connections. Do you know if your aunt has any interest in flower arranging? Is your pal a good photographer? Could one of your neighbours who owns a restaurant provide you with any of their space? If they can't do it for free, you might be able to negotiate a price down.
Do not undervalue your abilities. Trade your skills for the wedding services you need. Swap your bookkeeping skills for a free dress adjustment or your graphic design talents for a free wedding cake. Try something new!
Do-It-Yourself Whenever Possible.
If you and your fiance are looking to save money, do-it-yourself projects can be a great option. But a word of caution: only DIY when you're confident in the outcome. And remember to give yourself lots of time to finish home improvement projects. Spending the night before the wedding icing cupcakes or assembling centrepieces is not a good idea.
Do you want to spend $800 on something that will eventually be thrown away because it's too pretty to use? Do-it-yourself wedding invitations are a great way to save money. Getting started is easy; you only need access to a high-quality home printer and an invitation kit from local stationery or office supply store.
Use the do-it-yourself online option as well! Websites like Moo.com allow you to make and order custom wedding invitations online at a reasonable price. Use a free website for design, such as Canva.com, and you may reduce your costs even further. While it won't have the same level of elegance as a gold leaf or an invitation printed on a souvenir tea towel, it will be much more affordable.
Rather than paying a caterer, do everything yourself! Collaborate with your clan to plan a meal and shop for ingredients at a bulk retailer. Create floral arrangements and centrepieces with cheap or bulk floral products. Flowers from your garden might be used as well.
Use seasonal decorations if you can. We had a winter wedding in December, so we used a lot of berries and holly instead of flowers. To keep the cost of the wedding within reason, They had to make some sacrifices in the decorating department.
Use A Dummy Wedding Cake.
The cost of wedding cakes is shockingly high. Decorate a fake cake to save money on the real one. It's not necessary to have a real wedding cake when you have a pastry chef (or a friend with icing talents worthy of a reality TV baking competition) to adorn a stack of Styrofoam in the same ornate manner. Cut up a store-bought sheet cake and serve it to your guests. They won't be able to tell the difference!
Make a smaller cake for you and your new spouse if you want to participate in the cake-cutting ritual. You could use it as a fake cake topper for added realism.
Time Your Wedding Wisely.
A dish of food will set you back about $81 on average. (3) If you want to save money on your wedding, have an afternoon ceremony and make the reception more like a cocktail party with passed appetisers.
It would be best if you also thought about the day of the week. If you hold your wedding on a Friday or Sunday, you may be able to save as much as 50 per cent on the cost of the venue. Vendors like bakers, photographers, and DJs are less likely to be booked up on weekdays than on weekends.
Additionally, consider the season. The most common months for weddings are September and October. Since (4) there are fewer available funds for weddings in the fall, you can expect to pay extra.
Scout Out Vendors.
Don't rush into choosing wedding services; take your time and look around. Don't hire the first pastry chef you meet. Schedule meetings with many providers to ensure you're getting the greatest service for the lowest price.
The best kind of endorsement comes from someone you know and trust. Don't forget to canvass your social circle for vendor recommendations. Search online for reviews once you've located someone that sounds promising, so you know you made the right choice.
Tips To Plan Your Wedding On A Budget
Avoid Guest List Bloat.
When planning an event, it can be tempting to invite everyone you know. This isn't always the best course of action. Any new features will increase the price and make the wedding feel less personal.
We fell into this trap with our wedding; as the number of guests climbed, we started inviting folks we didn't know all that well out of a sense of obligation.
To cut costs as much as possible:
- You can try making it a more intimate affair by inviting fewer people.
- Begin by cutting your list by 20%, then again by 20%.
- Examine your level of satisfaction.
Ask For Wedding Help Instead Of Wedding Gifts.
We count ourselves fortunate to have had several musically talented friends and relatives willing to share their skills with us for the ceremony's musical accompaniment. In addition, we have a good friend who is a highly competent amateur photographer, and he has offered to take pictures of our wedding as a gift for us. Then, following the event, he gave professional-grade digital photographs of the proceedings.
To avoid breaking the bank on a wedding, consider asking guests to contribute their time or skills instead of a traditional gift.
Hold The Ceremony At Home Or Outdoors.
Booking a venue for your wedding and reception can add to a significant financial outlay. Instead, have the ceremony at your house (or that of a parent) or in a public park with a scenic backdrop.
Receptions can be held outside in any of these settings, adding to the beauty of the occasion and saving money on venue fees.
You wouldn't want to get married in a downpour and get all your guests and family wet if you opted for an outdoor ceremony, so if you decide to go that route, it's essential to have a backup plan in place. If storms are in the forecast, you may want to rent a strong tent; if it's going to be extremely hot, you may want to invest in some industrial fans; if none of those options is feasible, you may want to hunker down inside.
Do The Catering Yourself, Or Hire A Family-Owned Restaurant.
With the support of the wedding, we managed the meal preparation and catering ourselves. The ceremony's meal budget was slashed as a result.
If you're not signed in the kitchen, try asking a local, family-run restaurant to cater your big day instead. Family-owned restaurants should be your first choice since they are more likely to go above and beyond to make your wedding memorable and more likely to be sensitive to your financial constraints.
Go Minimal With The Flowers.
Rather than dropping a tonne of cash on flowers that will wilt as soon as the reception ends, consider going with a more understated approach, such as a single rose for each bridesmaid and a little bouquet for the bride. You can make your bouquets on the day of the ceremony by cutting roses from a friend's rose bush and removing the thorns.
Use artificial flowers as a way to save money on your wedding decor. It's highly unlikely that anyone would notice, and you may save a tonne of money by doing the preparations on your own in advance.
Skip The Groomsmen And Bridesmaid Gifts.
Gifts to the wedding party are traditional but aren't always required. Sending a handwritten note of appreciation goes a lot further than buying a present they may not use or appreciate. Your friends will accept your desire for a cheap wedding if they know why you have one.
Borrow Stereo Equipment Or Use Yours From Home.
Use your stereo equipment or borrow some from a friend to avoid spending money on a DJ. Don't bother placing speakers across the entire reception hall; concentrate on the dance floor area. Make a playlist on your iPod with many hours' worth of your favourite tunes, or ask a buddy to do it. The music you listen to is a reflection of you and your tastes.
Stock The Bar Yourself.
The cost of alcohol is usually relatively high at weddings, but it's also a very flexible area in which you can make savings. You can cut costs by providing only beer and wine or hosting a complimentary cocktail hour followed by a cash bar instead of an open bar for the entire event.
Ask whether you can bring in your booze instead of using the venue; doing so can significantly reduce your event's overall cost. Find a local budget liquor store and fill up on the essentials, including red and white wine and a couple of different kinds of beer. To stock, a comprehensive bar, invest in familiar spirits (vodka, gin, rum, whisky) as well as some mixers and soft drinks (soda, juice, etc.).
It's important to remember that buying a keg of beer is less expensive than buying cases, but any leftover beer will go to waste, while any extra bottles can be stored for months. You don't want to cut the party short because you ran out of alcohol, so it's best to overestimate.
Display’ Vendor Cards’ In Exchange For Reduced Rates.
Offer to promote the musicians, DJ, flowers, caterers, photographers, etc., and you hire for your reception in exchange for discounts on their services.
A small card with the names and contact information of the companies providing the various wedding services should be placed at each guest's setting during the reception. Many businesses are eager to offer discounts or free services in exchange for the chance to promote themselves in this way.
Contact The Local University.
The nearby college or university music department is an excellent location to start looking for reasonably priced musicians to perform at your ceremony and reception.
Get in touch with them to determine whether their pupils are interested in performing wedding ceremony music and what instruments or vocal works they study. It's a win-win: they get to experience while you save money on a usually expensive wedding expense.
If your community has an art programme or photography major, enquire as to whether or not any excellent students or recent graduates would be interested in shooting your wedding at a reduced rate in exchange for the opportunity to improve their resumes and showcase their work.
Price Shop For Decorations – And Consider Buying Used.
There are sales all through the year at Wedding Favours, Paper Warehouse, and Hobby Lobby. Knowing what you want in advance can allow you to "pounce" when the timing is right and get something at a discount.
In the meantime, you can save money by purchasing previously used table centrepieces and ornaments. You may save a tonne of money and time by purchasing used wedding decorations from recent brides on online classifieds like craigslist.org.
Plan, Plan, Plan.
The key to a successful low-cost wedding is careful preparation. It would be best to write down everything you can think of and then go over it one by one.
The earlier you start, the more time you'll have to uncover sales and discounts and investigate other exciting ideas, and the less "last-minute stress" you'll have.
It's likely that something will go wrong right at the very end, a minor detail that won't work out. Our pastor almost didn't make it to the rehearsal dinner, so we had little time to prepare.
A Beautiful Wedding On A Budget Is Possible!
Keep in mind that this day is all about the two of you and your future together as husband and wife. That's not something that can be undone in a single party. Don't lose sight of what's important amidst all the hubbub of wedding preparations. Spending a fortune on a wedding day is not an excellent way to show your spouse how much you care about them, and it might leave you both broke. Wed in beauty, style, and economy? It can be done!
Have no fear. Assume that something minor will go wrong, but resist the temptation to throw money at issue.
No one will notice, and someone in your wedding party (or assisting out) is bound to have a rather excellent idea of how to repair the problem.