Whether you’re newly engaged or knee-deep in orchestrating your dream day, the undeniable truth surfaces: Weddings come with a hefty price tag. Navigating the intricacies of wedding planning involves a delicate balance between crafting a personalised, stunning event and ensuring your budget emerges unscathed.
The challenge lies in discovering how to trim wedding expenses without compromising on style, and the good news is that numerous options exist to achieve just that.
To kickstart your money-saving journey, we recommend a heart-to-heart discussion with your partner about your wedding-day priorities. Identifying the two or three aspects that hold the utmost significance for both of you versus those that are less essential will pave the way for strategic spending decisions. Establishing a clear wedding budget, segmented before delving into vendor research and hiring, serves as a crucial foundation for financial planning.
From minor substitutions capable of slashing $500 off your wedding dress expenditure to insights on reducing the cost per slice of wedding cake by $3 (equating to $300 for 100 guests), this list is brimming with practical advice to yield substantial savings. The beauty of these tips lies in their ability to trim expenses without compromising an iota of your desired style or vision.
HERE’S OUR LIST:
Hire a wedding planner
It may sound counterintuitive—hiring a wedding planner can help you save money? It’s true! One of wedding planners’ most important duties is ensuring you stay within budget. And (major bonus!) they can use their wedding industry contacts and know-how to get you the best deals and savings.
Use a wedding budget tool
If you’re not hyper-organised during the wedding planning process, you can very easily slip into overspending mode. We have created a budget tool for you – Use our spreadsheet to track your planning
Prioritize what matters most
In the complex landscape of wedding planning, avoiding budgetary overruns hinges on prioritizing what truly matters to you on your special day. By engaging in thoughtful discussions with your partner, identify the key aspects that hold the utmost significance, allowing you to allocate resources strategically. This intentional approach ensures that you invest wisely in the elements that resonate with you the most while maintaining financial discipline throughout the wedding planning process.
Trim your guest list
We know it’s hard to consider celebrating without certain friends and family members, but cutting your guest list is the easiest way to reduce your budget. It’ll lower everything, including your catering and invitation costs, your venue size and rentals. Knowing that the average couple spends $266 per guest, if you invite 100 guests instead of 150, you’ll save over $13,000!
Enlist a smaller wedding party
While your wedding party pays for a lot of expenses themselves (attire, travel, etc.), there are certain items the couple traditionally pays for (bridesmaid bouquets, boutonnieres, wedding party gifts, etc.). If you can swing it without offending anyone, the fewer bridesmaids and groomsmen you enlist, the less you’ll spend.
Give your budget some wiggle room
Overspending on your wedding budget is actually super common—according to our Real Wedding Study, nearly half of couples admitted to going over budget. That’s why we recommend reserving 5 percent of your total budget for extras, hidden costs and fees, additional decor, those shoes you just had to have, etc.
Choose a shoulder-season date
Depending on where you plan to tie the knot, you could save hundreds, even thousands, of dollars by doing so in your destination’s off-season or during one of the general shoulder seasons (typically late winter and early spring). We know the weather might not be as optimal as it is during prime wedding season, but it could totally be worth a February event to afford your dream venue.
Host it all in one place
Having your ceremony and reception at one location will cut travel time for vendors you’d have to pay by the hour.
Venues charge way more for Saturday events because they’re by far the most popular day of the week, and there’s far more competition. So, while it’s not always as convenient for you or your loved ones, a Friday or Sunday (or pretty much any other non-Saturday) wedding date could be the answer to your budget prayers. And weekday weddings are totally trending right now, so don’t discount a Monday or Thursday!