Planning a wedding is no simple task. Besides the cost of the venue and catering, there are also countless other little details that need to be taken care of to pull off the perfect day. And with today's price tag averaging at $30k+, it's important to find ways to save money. If you're having trouble coming up with ideas, here is a list of 10 clever ways to save money on your wedding. Our main goal is to help you focus on what really matters - celebrating your love.
1. Set a budget and stick to it
The most important thing you can do to save money on a wedding is set a budget and then stick with it. Setting a wedding budget can seem intimidating, but it doesn't have you to be. It's easy to be swayed by the latest, greatest trend or vendor. But if it pushes your budget too high, don't overspend. If you need help to come up with a budget, consider things like venue rental costs and catering. Ultimately, your wedding should be about the two of you and your love for one another. It's not about lavish decorations and expensive food.
2. Have your wedding on a weekday
If you're looking for ways to save money on your wedding, it may be worth considering having a weekday wedding. There are many reasons people choose to have their weddings on a weekday. For starters, the wedding will probably be smaller, so there will be less stress and pressure during the event. And, depending on where you live, weekday weddings might not include as many fees as weekend weddings.
3. Cut back on the number of courses at your reception
If you're hosting a dinner reception, the easiest way to save money is to offer fewer courses. This will save you from spending on things like appetizers, salads, and desserts. This is a great option if you want to create a more intimate experience for your guests or if you're looking to save some money.
4. Create an evening reception
Many couples opt for an evening reception to cut costs. You'll still have the same ambiance and atmosphere, but you won't be paying to keep up your venue all day. Not to mention, you'll be able to cut down on the guest list. This not only saves you money in the short term but also gives you more flexibility in the months leading up to your wedding.
5. Go for a small, intimate ceremony with low-maintenance décor
Weddings are expensive and the cost of a venue, catering, and other services can really add up. To stay within your budget, consider holding a small ceremony with low maintenance décor. You could do this at home or even have it in a local park if you're on a tight budget. This is the perfect way to save money without skimping on your big day.
6. Save money by finding a cheaper venue that reflects your style
A wedding venue can account for around 50% of your total wedding cost, so this is a good place to save money. Many couples opt for a fancier venue that they don't need in order to impress guests. However, if you find a less expensive place that better reflects your style, you can save money on everything.
Although fancy wedding venues and elaborate food are often at top of a bride and groom's to-do list for the wedding day, remember the main reason why you're having the wedding. The goal is to celebrate your love with the closest people in your lives! While you want the day to be beautiful, you don't want it to break your bank, either. Be sure to consider how many guests will be attending, as well as how your venue will meet everyone's needs.
7. Be creative with your seating arrangements
If you're not sure what to do with your seating arrangements, try being creative! Instead of having a traditional head table for the bride and groom, why not have the guests eat at tables in groups of 4 or 6? It will give you more space to serve food and drinks. You can also set up some small tables off to the side for a sweetheart table or family tables.
Another way to play with your seating arrangements is to have them by color instead of alphabetically. That way, all the blue-eyed people are seated together, for example. If you have many people who will be dancing all night, then consider arranging tables in a long rectangle shape so that they can be pushed together if needed.
You could also mix up table heights with tall cocktail tables and shorter round ones. And instead of having one long head table, create an "L" shape so that the bride's family is closer and easier to chat with during dinner.
8. Buy your dress at least six months in advance
A good deal of wedding expenses come from the dress. So buy your dress at least six months in advance, instead of right before the big day. This way, you get to save money on alterations and have time to decide on the perfect dress. You may also get a better deal by buying your dress well in advance.
9. Plan your wedding around special sales and discounts
Most wedding-related sales and discounts happen because of vendors trying to sell as much product as possible to maximize their revenue. This is why you see so many weddings booked around the end of the year, or in the month leading up to Christmas. Plan your wedding around the sales and discounts, rather than the other way around. If you do so, you'll be able to take advantage of incredible deals that won't be available once the calendar turns to January.
10. Host your ceremony and reception in one place
One of the single greatest ways to save money on your wedding is to host your ceremony and reception in one place. Most all-in-one venues will provide the ceremony and reception space, as well as the catering. They may also include other services like photography, videography, or even a bridal suite. Plus, if your ceremony and reception are in the same venue, you can cut down on travel and unnecessary costs.
Your wedding should be a joyous occasion and one you'll remember for a lifetime, regardless of your budget. If you want to get married without having to spend an arm and a leg, try some or all of the clever ways to save money on a wedding. In the long run, it can help you cut down your wedding budget and make your big day more affordable.
Ready to start your wedding planning? Don't go any further without checking out our comprehensive guide - Planning Your Dream Wedding: A Stress-Free Guide to Navigating the Process with Ease.