With the average big day costing anywhere between $36,000- $65,000, weddings don’t come cheap. Here are our top money saving tips when it comes to planning for your wedding day.
1. Get Your Priorities Straight
We’re always being told to dream big but when it comes to your wedding day, unless you have the budget to match, something has got to give. Whilst it is hard not to want every bit of your big day to be perfect, sacrificing on one or a few aspects might get you everything you have dreamed in another and save you money at the same time. The first step is to make a list of everything for the wedding from venue and caterer to wedding cars and flowers. Then, arrange your list in order of priority starting with the things you can absolutely not do without. This is where you should spend your cash. Those towards the bottom of your list can afford to be scrimped on or forgone altogether.
2. Friends & Family
Never has there been a better time than your wedding to call upon the help of friends and family. Most would be excited about the celebrations and would be more than willing to help out. You may have close ones who can cater for weddings, or know of someone who does, such as caterers, florists, photographers or DJs. Friends and family members who are married might be able to give you some reputable recommendations when it comes to suppliers and vendors so that might also save you valuable planning time.
3. Out Of Hours
If you don’t really need to have your wedding on a Saturday, then don’t, and save yourself a dollar or two! Somewhere down the line, someone made it a thing to charge a premium for weddings held on a Saturday evening but a wedding on any other day is still a wedding. There are 6 other days in the week that will save you a considerable amount. Off peak season can also save you thousands and consider it if you plan to hold your celebrations abroad. Travelling during peak season when all the kids are off school is guaranteed to make a huge dent in your budget from the get-go.
4. Have Your Cake & Eat It
An increasing number of couples are choosing to forgo the cake and replace it with their favourite desserts e.g. cupcakes, cake pops, pastries, cookies and chocolate fountains. If you have any friends or family who are a whizz at baking then they might be able to chip in with a helping hand. If you absolutely must have a cake, consider downsizing to a smaller sized cake or even making the cake part of the meal and serving it up as the dessert course. You save money and get to have your cake. It’s a win-win situation.
5. Go Digital
Another growing trend is sharing your wedding details online rather than the traditional postal invites and save-the-date cards. It doesn’t need to be anything flashy (but if that’s what you want then, by all means, go all out), a simple one-pager will suffice and won’t cost much with so many free basic website builders at your disposal. This will save you money in print and postage (and in time if you’re planning on adding a personal handwritten touch to it). Or for social media addicts, how about a Facebook Event as a form of invitation?
6. Guestlist Compression
One of the easiest ways of saving money for your wedding is being strict with your guestlist. The higher the headcount, they more money you will need to cough up. Whilst your parents or future in-laws insist on inviting friends they went to school with (and whom you’ve never met), this is where you may need to be (slightly) brutal and put your foot down (unless of course, you’re happy for them to be there). You might also want to consider a very streamlined bridal party. Having just your two sisters as bridesmaids rather than 7 of your closest girlfriends will save you money on dresses, shoes, accessories, hair, makeup etc which could be spent elsewhere higher up on your priority list.
7. Wedding Insurance
Having wedding insurance in place will not only give couples peace of mind but potentially pay for the rescheduling of the whole wedding should it be cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances such as the ceremony venue becoming unavailable at the last minute, the bride or groom falling ill or severe storms causing road closures to and around the reception venue. Wedding insurance is relatively inexpensive and couples can choose the level of cover that best suits their budget. Other items typically covered in a basic wedding insurance policy includes supplier failure, wedding transportation and equipment hire (click here to read more about what items are typically covered under wedding insurance). Should any mishap occur with any of the items covered under the policy, couples can rest assured that they’ll be able to claim back any deposits and pre-paid payments.
8. Venue Consolidation
Having your wedding ceremony and reception in the same place can save you more than a few pennies not just in venue and decor costs but also in the transportation of guests from one venue to another (also has the added benefit that guests won’t get lost on route or arrive late). A wedding venue that doesn’t require you to use their own vendors could also save you money too. It will also allow you more flexibility, getting what you really want, from a more preferable food menu down to the locally-grown, seasonal flowers and vintage-style decor, so make sure you take your time and shop around.