Extravagant wedding celebrations are fun to dream about as a kid, but the sticker shock is closer to a nightmare as an adult. With living costs rising, it’s no surprise many couples don’t want to spend the equivalent of a downpayment for a one-day party. Only in the wedding industry do you see such outrageous costs for a singular event.
You can have a beautiful wedding filled with people who love and support you for significantly less than you may think. These tips will help you plan your blissful event while saving you serious cash.
1. Consider a Backyard Wedding
Booking a wedding venue is typically the most expensive part of your wedding, costing thousands of dollars. Save yourself the hassle and money by hosting your event at your or a loved one’s home. Large backyards have a natural beauty that doesn’t need much decoration, so you’ll also spend less there.
You’ll still need to rent basics like chairs and tables but skip unnecessary fees and the whopping cost of renting a space. Set aside room for dancing and get creative with entertainment options, setting up outdoor classics like cornhole for guests of all ages to play.
2. Change the Date
Summer Saturdays are the most expensive days to get married. If your schedule is flexible, having your wedding on a different day of the week or time of year could save you significantly on your venue.
Weekday weddings are the cheapest alternative at any time of year, but they’re not as convenient for guests who’d likely have to take off work to attend. Instead, opt for a Sunday wedding so your loved ones don’t have to rearrange their schedule, but you still get a sizable discount.
The wedding industry has expanded its in-season months over the last decade. June and August were once the highest in demand and, therefore, the most expensive. Nowadays, December, January and February are the only months wedding venues typically lower their rates.
3. Use Your Village
Your friends and family have unique talents, so ask them to help you out in lieu of a wedding present. Loved ones gifted in the kitchen could cook food or bake your cake. Artistic people can lend a hand in designing programs or taking pictures on the big day.
Anyone who can operate a laptop can become an amateur DJ. Ask around to see where the people in your life may be able to pitch in. You could save thousands of dollars with a few conversations.
4. Pinch Every Penny
If you weren’t born into money or started saving the moment you were born, affording a wedding can be challenging. Even a budget event will cost you something. Now may be the time to tighten your belt and cut the extra fat from your day-to-day expenses.
Downsizing your place or car can give you more money to pay for your nuptials. Next, let go of all the non-essentials like subscription services and eating out. Every little bit helps you get one step closer to affording your wedding.
5. Trim the Guest List
Most aspects of your wedding budget depend on the number of guests you invite. The size of your venue, the number of tables and chairs you need, the amount of food you order, programs and favors all increase as the guest count goes up.
While it’s tempting to invite everyone in your life, you need to draw the line somewhere. Eliminating or limiting plus ones can save you hundreds of dollars.
A minimal list with only your closest friends and family will keep your day just as memorable but at a much lower price point.
6. Hire a Wedding Planner
Most budget brides wouldn’t consider hiring a wedding planner high on the list of essential expenses. However, the added cost is generally worth it. They have connections in the wedding industry you could only dream of, getting you discounts wherever possible. They’ll be able to tie together the perfect day for you, combining your DIYs and dreams.
Plus, event planning can be stressful, especially for a high-stakes celebration like a wedding. Having someone behind the scenes ensuring everything from planning to execution runs smoothly will be a stress buster.
Stay True to You
There are hundreds of little ways to scrimp and save on your wedding day. These tips scratch the surface and help you spend less on big-ticket items. Ultimately, you must stay true to yourselves as a couple.
Pinch pennies in the areas you feel comfortable with so you can spend a little more on the items that mean the most to you. Maybe you don’t care about the dessert, so you buy a small show cake and serve your guests with a sheet cake, but you want a professional photographer to perfectly capture every moment.
These decisions are highly individual and will make your wedding day ideally suited to you while sticking to a tight budget.