Pressures From Friends And Family
Of course, its easy to say that $44,000 is too much to spend on one day when you aren’t the one getting married. However, that oversimplifies a complex issue underlying the reason couples spend such large sums of money in the first place.
Depending on a couple’s family and values, they may see the wedding as a chance to gather everyone together as a sort of reunion, especially if people have moved away or become busier. This may be the only chance they have to catch up with everyone.
Unfortunately, the larger your guest list, the more expensive your wedding becomes. To some couples, the price tag is worth it if it means getting to see their loved ones.
With more guests also comes more expectations. A couple may feel pressured to have a beautiful, lavish wedding if their friends who had a beautiful wedding will attend. Or, a couple may want to impress family members. People have a habit of comparing weddings, especially when theres a string of them happening, so that adds to a couple’s wedding pressure.
Hit The High Street For Shoes
Let’s face it, if you’re going to wear a long gown, your guests wont even see your shoes, they’ll be looking at the dress, and if it’s outside they’re going to get wrecked. Pick a high street pair , and you’ll save loads. If you are set on designer heels, don’t choose white satin, pick a pair you can wear again, and again, and again…
Dont Go For The Most Obvious Or Convenient Venue
It might be tempting to hold your wedding at the closest or most convenient venue to your house. However, because opting for an outside-the-box choice could save you a significant amount on your ceremony and reception, you should explore as many options as possible. Broadly speaking, you can divide these options into three categories: those that work in small towns and rural areas, those that work in bigger cities, and those that work in both.
Rural Areas and Small TownsIf you live in a smaller community, look at venues like the following:
Cities and Metropolitan AreasIf youre in a bigger city, the following ideas may present affordable options for you:
Pro Tip: The amazing staff at my New York friends wedding venue made for a silky-smooth experience for guests and a predictable experience for the newlyweds and their families. I could tack a slew of additional superlatives, but cheap would not be one of them. If saving money on your wedding is a top concern, I would not recommend using a catered venue unless youve exhausted all other options.
AnywhereSome options work well just about anywhere:
Pro Tip: Park ceremonies are especially enticing in outdoor adventure destinations and year-round vacation towns known for natural beauty. One of the most memorable weddings Ive ever attended took place in a remarkably scenic city park in suburban Denver. The ceremonys backdrop was a stunning amalgamation of red rock cliffs and scrubby foothills tinged with ochre and green.
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Cut Back Where You Can
There are a handful of ways you can put aside more money for your wedding. Try to limit eating out, vacations and buying new toys to trim down on current expenses. Or, lower your wedding costs by spending less on certain unnecessary luxuries.Here are five tips to cut back on costs:
Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Help
When it comes to budget-friendly weddings, remember that DIY doesn’t mean you have to do it ALL yourself. Your friends and family can be your personal saviors! Enlist retired aunts for centerpiece prep, ask your talented cousin to do your makeup, and see if your BFF who loves to bake will whip up some wedding cookie favors. A “divide and conquer” approach will keep things affordable and take some of the DIY stress off your shoulders.
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Make Your Own Entertainment
A wedding DJ or band is great to get everyone on the dance floor, but if you consider yourself a music maestro, you could do it yourself. If you have a big library of music, you can make a wedding party playlist although bear in mind, this will be about five hours worth of music!
Got a local university? Ask around for student DJs, saxophonists, jazz bands or string quartets that might be happy to play for a smaller fee. You can even find other entertainment, like a amateur magician to caricaturists for your cocktail hour.
Save On The Ceremony Have A Close Friend Officiate
Many people don’t think of this when planning a wedding, but the average cost of an officiant is nothing to sneeze at.The fee for an officiant ranges from $500 to $800, and that’s not including the standard tip of $50 to $100.
If you’re not particularly attached to the idea of getting married by a clergyman or other specific officiant, it might be worth it to consider getting a friend to officiate the ceremony.
There are several advantages to this: You would be able to give someone close to you a great honor, and you would have a very specific ceremony that would be unique to you. My venue didn’t often do ceremonies, but one of the few I did see had a close friend of the couple do the ceremony, and it was truly touching.If you have a friend who is a gifted writer or orator, this is a road you should seriously consider.
It is nice to still give the friend something for all of the work that goes into planning the ceremony, but nothing near as much as $550. You could give them a small tip, or offer to pay for their certification classes, or get them the same gift you give the rest of the wedding party.
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Create Your Own Photo Booth
“We really want a photo booth for our reception next year, but they’re obscenely expensive. Instead, we plan on putting a huge piece of butcher paper on an empty wall and buying a , which includes fun hats, sunglasses and other accessories. You could also easily and cheaply put a kit together yourself. Guests will be able to take their own pictures with their phones! The total cost for the project will be around $50 the cheapest photo booth we could find was $500.” Emily Christine, Facebook
“We bought a Bluetooth remote and tripod for our iPad for $50 total and will be using that to take pictures for our photo booth! Also, I found that it’s so easy to make your own props with a color printer, card stock, and dowel rods.” Brandy Ginther, Facebook
Establish A Savings Timeline
The average U.S. engagement lasts 14 months, which gives you a fair amount of time to save money for the big day. That said, it’s important to map out a savings timeline to ensure you stay on track. If, for example, you have a year to save for your wedding, your estimated costs total $30,000, and you only have $15,000 coming from savings or parental gifts, you’ll need to save $1,250 a month, on average, until your wedding date arrives.
Furthermore, you should create a schedule of when you need to pay your vendors so you’re not caught off guard down the line. You might, for example, need to give your band a deposit three months before the wedding and pay the balance shortly after the fact. In other words, even if your wedding is a year away, you may not have a full 12 months to save up all the money you’ll need to pay for it.
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Why You Can Trust Bankrate
Founded in 1976, Bankrate has a long track record of helping people make smart financial choices. Weve maintained this reputation for over four decades by demystifying the financial decision-making process and giving people confidence in which actions to take next.
Bankrate follows a strict editorial policy, so you can trust that were putting your interests first. All of our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts, who ensure everything we publish is objective, accurate and trustworthy.
Our banking reporters and editors focus on the points consumers care about most the best banks, latest rates, different types of accounts, money-saving tips and more so you can feel confident as youre managing your money.
Cut Back On Monthly Expenses
Do you belong to a gym, club or subscription service that takes a monthly sum out of your account? Cutting back on these types of expenses can have some of the quickest effects on your account balance. Turning off your cable could save you $100 a month, and ending a gym membership could put an extra $75 in your account each month. You’re not going to give up your cell phone, but you might be able to change the data plans or forgo on-demand movies for a year. You should make a habit of reaching out to your cell phone and cable companies annually and negotiating a better deal. Sometimes, just by asking, you can get a price cut on your bills. Even $20 off a monthly bill can save you $240 over the course of a year. Nowadays, it’s so expensive for a company to acquire a new customer that most will lower their fees just to keep you around. And if your attempts at negotiation fail, consider cutting out nonessential monthly costs. We’re not talking about your health plan or your life insurancethose things are non-negotiable. But for things like cable, Netflix, Amazon Prime, Birchbox and Spotifyanything that debits you on a monthly basisthe time has come to really consider if these are must-haves you truly need, or if you can sacrifice them for a bit in favor of a larger wedding budgetand that fancy cake you have your eye on.
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When People Offer To Help Let Them
“Don’t be afraid to take guests up on their offers for services in exchange for a wedding gift. A cousin did my beautiful cake and we saved big there, and it was so appreciated. My mom made the groom’s cake, just a regular red velvet, and it was awesome!” Laura Hope Jackson, Facebook
“We’ve asked our friends and family to please help on the day, take responsibility for something or join in with the bake-off instead of getting us a present. We really don’t need a set of champagne flutes, but someone making sure my granny eats would be super.” Jemma Beedie, Facebook
Rent A House For The Wedding And For Lodging
“We rented a house, which tripled as wedding venue, housing for out of state wedding party participants, and secluded honeymoon venue the following week. ”
“We rented a huge vacation home and had a house party! It was low-key, intimate, yet still was major cause of celebration. Hiring a caterer with a kick-butt menu to do a party was so much better than a sit-down meal. We didn’t even do tables lots of bar tops and existing comfy furniture for perching. We also were able to have our entire bridal party stay in the bedrooms of the house, cutting their expenses too.” alixei
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Where Can I Find Affordable Wedding Flowers
The only limits to finding affordable wedding flowers are the boundaries of your creativity! When shopping for wedding flowers on a budget, look online for wholesalers and bulk pricing discounts, get quotes from your local florists, and contact local nurseries and farms to find the best prices available. Grow or forage for flowers to minimize expenses.
It Can Be Hard To Gauge Your Needs But These Strategies Will Help
There are myriad costs that go into getting married, some of them unforeseen: You’ll want to choose a venue, a caterer, a florist, perhaps a band or DJnot to mention wedding clothes. This is why it’s so important to have a plan to save for them, so all those expenditures that make tying the knot special don’t set you back financially for years to come.
These strategies can help you plan for a wedding and put aside enough to meet your needs.
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Decorate With Dry Flowers
Decorating with dry flowers is an effective and practical way to save on the cost of your wedding flowers. Dry flowers are dainty and give off an air of nostalgia that so many of us can relate to at weddings. It will also save the busy newlyweds from trying to figure out what to do with the leftover wedding flowers.
Why Are Weddings So Expensive
A lot of the cost stems from the number of people, products, and services involved with planning such a big event. By WeddingWires data, the average couple hires 14 vendors for their big day.
Costs can vary considerably depending on factors like your desired date and location, and how many guests you plan to invite. Heres how those costs commonly break down.
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Make The Most Of Whats Included
- The venues tablecloths might not be the most inspiring but it can be pretty easy to transform them. Rather than renting nicer linens, buy cheap fabric and use it as a rustic table runner, tied up with twine at the ends
- Roll up plain napkins and top them with a sprig of rosemary or a wildflower to instantly make them more pretty
- Fill the venues free centrepiece vases with lemons, baubles, pine cones, coloured sand, pebbles, acorns, conkers, moss, apples, glass stones, pretty much anything you want that works with the season and top with a few simple flowers
- Make a lounge area using furniture from other parts of the venue, then you only need to buy a throw to put over the sofa and chairs than source the furniture yourself