You’re engaged! Congrats! This is such an exciting time. As you begin planning for the big day you will start to notice that there are a lot of expenses that come with weddings. Don’t let expenses put a damper on your joy and cause you stress. You don’t need to skimp on the wedding of your dreams or go deeply into debt to pay for it. Save money by planning ahead, choosing wisely and prioritizing what’s truly important, you can say “I Do” without stressing over wedding costs.
1. Start saving now
Instead of waiting for that special someone to pop the question, start saving now for your wedding! The average age of marriage is 27 for men, and 26 for women. If you start saving for your wedding when you’re 20, you’ll only need to put away $333 a month. But, if you start at age 26, you’ll need to put away $2,333 a month!
2. Timing is everything
Think off-season and mid-week for your wedding, and you’ll save a bundle!
First, consider a winter wedding. You’ll shave thousands of dollars off the venue price by choosing an unusual time of year to get married. Second, think beyond Saturdays. If you can find a church with a vacancy on a Sunday, grab it! Venue prices drop dramatically with just a one-day switch.
You can also opt for a mid-week wedding that precedes a national holiday date, like July 4th. This way, your guests will still be able to enjoy the evening without rushing home.
3. Skip the wedding cake
A slice of dessert for $12.50 that doesn’t even taste good? Meh, who needs it? Here are some other ideas:
Fake your cake. If you can’t stomach the idea of a cake-less wedding, ask your baker to fake it for you by creating a false cardboard bottom for your cake and only baking a genuine top layer or two. You’ll get the same look without the huge cost.
Set up a dessert bar. You can serve hot waffles, brownies or chocolate chip cookies with ice cream, caramel sauce and a selection of other fun toppings. You’ll pamper your guests at a fraction of the cost!
Serve a sheet cake instead. Your guests will be happy to savor a slice – even without all that fondant and frosting.
Serve a variety of fancy cupcakes. Not only are cupcakes whimsical and fun, but they are yummy too with the different fillings and frosting options.
4. Save on your gown
5. Vary your venue
Save a ton by choosing a venue that has no outside contracts. This way, you can shop around for the cheapest caterer, photographer and DJ.
If you really dare to be different, have your wedding in one of these budget-friendly venues:
A college campus. You might even be able to snag a student discount!
A vacation home. Rent a vacation home and let it serve as your wedding venue, lodging for out-of-town guests and a honeymoon destination for after the wedding.
A Backyard. Having your wedding and reception at the backyard of a friend, family member or neighbors backyard has potential to save money.
At parks and beaches. Many city, state and national parks, including beaches and gardens, serve as a beautiful, low-cost venue option. In ost cases you will need an event permit to reserve the space.
Share Your Ideas
Already married? Share your best wedding hacks with us in the comments!