Great Savings Tip #80 – Save On Your Wedding

 

 

Great Savings Tip #80 Save on the cost of your wedding.

If you believe in the dream of having a big, beautiful wedding and it’s the most important thing for you, then go for it.  At the same time, the money spent on weddings gets crazy real fast.  That’s why it pays to think about the choices involved, and how those choices will impact your finances, or the finances of a parent or relative who has promised to cover some or even all of the costs.

 

What does the average wedding cost?  According to CostOfWedding.com,  the average cost of a wedding runs around $25,600 with most couples spending between $19,200 and $33,000.  Surprisingly, these figures don’t even include an engagement ring or the cost of the honeymoon.  To estimate the cost of your wedding check out the site’s wedding cost estimator.

 

20 Ways To Save On Your Wedding

 

How can you keep the cost of a wedding down?  Here’s a list of 20 things you might consider if you’re willing to be flexible:

 

A wedding in a garden.

A family member’s garden might be the perfect spot for a wedding.

1)  Have your wedding outdoors or at a friend or family member’s house.  If you don’t have to pay for your venue you can save big time.

2)  Buy less cake.  Most wedding receptions have lots of food and not everyone wants cake.  If you want a cake to look bigger you can always create some fake frosted tiers on the bottom.  Or if you love cupcakes or know someone who bakes, have them try arranging frosted cupcake layers on a tiered plate to replace a traditional cake

A wedding cake is traditional.

Can you get by with a smaller cake?

3)  Rely on friends and loved ones for financial support.  If you know florists, photographers, cooks, etc. ask them to help at your wedding and donate a part of their service as your wedding gift.

4)  Consider an off time of year for your wedding.  Most weddings are held in summer months so by scheduling at another time you will (a) have more choices for a venue and (b) that means you can get a better deal.

5)  Invite fewer guests.  Every added guest requires additional room and more food.  Those items represent a huge part of your overall budget.

6)  Make a budget to set priorities.  At some point, you’ll need to decide whether a certain thing you were hoping to do is feasible so it helps to know what you can and can’t do without.

7)  Don’t be afraid to bargain with your vendors.  For example, if you have an idea what your catering costs should be and a potential caterer is asking for more, then offer less and see what happens.  Also, check with more than one vendor to get a better idea on a reasonable price range.

8)  Consider your options for formal wear.  If you want a new white wedding dress it could mean spending hundreds more, but if the dress isn’t as important, you might borrow one, wear a family member’s gown, or perhaps you might find a new one on a discount or discontinued items rack.  If color isn’t critical, you might also consider a “prom” dress.  That way you might end up with a really nice dress you can use for any special occasion after the wedding.

A simple selection of food for the wedding might be best.

Do you have a friend who likes to cook?

9)  Skip a higher cost “full meal deal” from a caterer, and offer a coffee, tea and appetizer affair, instead.  If you have your wedding earlier in the day, you could also offer a brunch or luncheon, which is something a creative friend might be able to organize on their own.

10)  Get seasonal flowers.  Or consider using silk flowers, which you can purchase months in advance at a sale and reuse to decorate your house or apartment.

11)  Combine venues: By having your wedding and reception at the same site you avoid the need for transportation, moving presents, etc.  Better yet, you pay for only one site instead of two.

A few flowers go a long way.

Seasonal flowers are much less expensive.

12)  Make your own invitations.  Ask a friend who is good with a computer to help out.  There are all kinds of software, envelopes and papers available to make a professional looking job for much less.

13)  Do your own hair and make up or ask a friend who knows her stuff to help.

14)  Skip party favors.  You can save a few bucks for every one who attends.

15)  If your wedding is casual, consider having a potluck instead of a catered meal.

 

 

16)  Can you skip the alcohol?  This one depends on the crowd, but hard drinks cost far more than wine or beer so do the latter if you have to do anything.  Otherwise, soda, coffee, juices or punch are a veritable bargain in comparison.

17)  Skip the limo.  Ask a friend or family member with a nice car if you can use it for the wedding.  If you want a driver, you can ask a trusted friend to handle it.

18)  Instead of having your florist make the bouquet, ask each guest to bring a flower to the wedding and have a creative friend put your bouquet together right before the ceremony.  That way everyone can take a personal hand in helping to create the perfect wedding.

19)  Instead of hiring a photographer, ask everyone to take pictures and send them to a preselected friend who is good with pictures to help you organize them.  These days, everyone has either a digital camera or phone with a built-in camera so having hundreds of pictures to cull through will usually give you several dozen really great shots for an album.   There are also a number of websites like Shutterfly.com which offer the option to create a photo book from your pictures.  This way you end up with a terrific and very professional presentation of your pictures for much less.

20)  Ask friends to clip coupons for stores that sell wedding supplies.  These might include Joanne Fabric, Michaels and Bed Bath and Beyond. Also, be on the lookout for sales at these stores or at party supply stores.  If you plan it far enough in advance, you should have ample opportunity to gather supplies as you go along, which has the added benefit of spreading the cost out over several months.

 

Moving Forward As A Couple

 

You may kiss the bride.

When setting priorities ask what you’ll remember as you look back.

Weddings are important for a variety of reasons that have nothing to do with money.  At the same time, getting off the ground on a secure financial footing with your new partner can impact your happiness down the road.  To avoid overspending, set priorities and budget for your wedding up front.  Hopefully, as you look back on your wedding in a few years, you won’t be thinking about what you spent so much as how lucky you are to be sharing your life with someone you love.  Start life together by making conscious and meaningful decisions that bring you closer together as a couple.  That way you can look back without regret. All the best!

 

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