How to Save Money on Your Wedding Budget?

how to save money on your wedding budget

When two people who have known each other their whole lives get married, it is frequently the happiest and most significant day of their lives. The day of a couple's wedding should be among the highlights of their lives. It would be great if money wasn't a source of tension in your marriage from the get-go. While getting married in the local courthouse is the most inexpensive choice, most people spend years dreaming about their wedding ceremony. However, there is good news: it is possible to accomplish your objectives without going into serious debt. Check out our Top Wedding Planners here to help make your special day as smooth as possible

Save money so you have something tangible to share with your partner when you begin your life together. Read on, and we'll reveal how to host a sophisticated, one-of-a-kind, and truly unforgettable event without breaking the bank.

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Table of Contents

Begin with a Specific Budget

One of the best ways to keep wedding expenditures in check is to set a strong, well-defined budget in advance. Stick to these steps to achieve your goal.

Set a Hard Maximum

Before you start planning your wedding, you and your partner should sit down and figure out how much of your funds you can put towards the big day. Whether there are any charges associated with this, you may want to ask your parents if they are willing to pay for them. Don't exceed the sum of these figures.

List Every Known Expense

The next thing to do is make a spreadsheet with all the expenditures you can remember. Find out what amount things like the officiant, the band, the venue, the outside furniture, and Disc jockey will set you back by getting numerous quotations from local vendors or contacting the ones you're considering in booking directly.

Estimate Other Expenses Accurately

The amount of food and drink needed for the reception can be estimated by looking at how many people are expected and how much food and drink each person typically consumes during social events.

Create a buffer

You should save a little more cash for things like last-minute décor, extra tables, and staff tips. Depending on the extent of these variables, the cost of your pillow could range from 10% to 30% of your entire allocation.

Arrive at Your Budget Goal

You should aim for the sum of stages three through five when making a budget. If the sum is larger than the limit for the first stage, you may need to reevaluate your priorities and get rid of anything that isn't essential to making your vision a reality.

Don't Pick the Most Convenient or Easy Location

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The most convenient or nearest venue to your home could be attractive as a wedding site. It's important to weigh all of your alternatives, as doing things differently could save you a lot of money on your ceremony and celebration. These selections can be divided down into three main groups: (1) those suited for use in tiny, more rural areas; (2) those appropriate for use in bigger, more metropolitan environments; and (3) those appropriate for use in both.

Avoid Popular Wedding Seasons and Days

Everyone feels more upbeat and united now that spring has arrived. Wedding venues realize that more couples will be getting married in the spring and summer, and so can cost more for ceremonies scheduled during those times.

Weddings are most popular from June through September. Likewise, there is a spike before and after seasonal holidays like Christmas. Choose less popular days to save money, but be prepared to be flexible.

It's important to understand that Weekends are the most costly because that's when the majority of people get married. Planning it on a Saturday is a good idea because that is when most people have the day off. If your wedding is going to be in the same location, though, you could save money by holding it on a Sunday.

Nobody should assume that just because a couple gets married on a Weekend in June that they will have a better experience than other couples who also get married on Saturdays in June. The months of November through March are traditionally considered the wedding off-season, when costs tend to be lower. There's a good chance that your venue may offer you a discount if you're able to hold your party in December instead of the more common January or February. Have a contingency plan ready in case of adverse weather!

Keep Business Local and Use Personal Relationships

Once you've decided on a venue, it's time to start thinking about who you might invite. It's a win-win scenario for everyone involved: the local businesses will benefit, and your guests will feel like they had a hand in planning your special day. If you have a skill that would be useful in trade, such as website design or legal expertise, don't be afraid to offer it.

Considering the following recommendations:

Bartending 

You undoubtedly know at least one individual who can be trusted to serve alcohol safely, whether it's an old flatmate or a distant relative. If it's legal in your location, you can either compensate them an hourly wage, trade for future benefits, or just let them keep the extra alcohol.

Or Be Your Own Bartender

It is more cost effective to stock your own bar than to hire a bartender for an open bar. Here, you can order whatever alcoholic beverage you choose at a price that suits your budget. While cheap alcohol sometimes gets a poor rap, it's reassuring to understand that there are many high-quality options available without breaking the bank.

In addition, your visitors will value the opportunity to customise their drinks. Keep in mind that some people simply don't drink. Rather than spending money on expensive booze, you can save money without compromising quality by offering soft drinks and juices to guests.

Photography

One option is to get the aid of a creative pal or a professional photography pal. If this is the case, it's appropriate to make it clear that they are not required to buy you a wedding gift and to offer to reimburse them at a cost that is mutually agreeable and, ideally, less than the going rate.

Transportation

If the wedding and reception will be held in different locations, it is not necessary to rent a limo or party bus. Having sober drivers or other transport professionals among your friends and family can help you save money on this expensive line item. Guests who don't plan on drinking during the wedding should be sought out several months in advance. Offer some form of compensation, such as an hourly wage or a free night's stay at a nearby hotel. If you need larger vehicles, such as vans or buses, you may always ask if any of your guests have them.

You should compensate them for their time and any other costs they incur, such as travel or hiring drivers, if this is the case. The guests could also ride a tram or the subway from the ceremony location to the reception location. They won't mind spending a couple of dollars each, and the experience of partying in an entire train car will be one they'll never forget. You can save money by having the elderly guests take taxis to the ceremony and reception instead of reserving many limousines or buses for the wedding party.

Setup and Decoration

Don't buy flowers if you don't have to; ask around for some potted plants you may borrow instead. Make simple decor like table mats and streamers with family members while they help you set up for the ceremony and reception.

You should ask a friend or family member who is authorised to perform marriages to do so if you know one. Given the gravity of the situation, they would be sensible to offer you something in exchange for your assistance. You might also offer to provide them a salary or provide for their basic needs. If you do not know a priest or minister, a friend who is exceptionally adept at public speaking may be able to step in, as a ministerial licence may be obtained online in a matter of hours.

Tasks at Random

It's a good idea to delegate some of the less glamorous aspects of the wedding to other people, including keeping a watch on the door to the bride's dressing room and pointing out where people should sit when they first arrive at the reception. You can show your appreciation for the people that helped you even if you didn't have an open bar by offering to buy them drinks or providing them with extra wedding favours.

Reduce Your Guest List

If you care a lot about people's feelings, this advice may be the hardest for you to take. However, hundreds of dollars may be saved by doing away with only one employment. Consider the amount of money you could save by inviting only a dozen guests instead of more than a hundred.

You'll need to undertake some serious self-reflection for this, but you must be completely honest with yourself. Should you invite your once-weekly-visiting neighbour to your ideal wedding? Most people are understanding about chipping in for the wedding costs, but some might take it personally if they aren't asked. If somebody is hurt by the wedding's small size and focus on close relatives, you can just apologise and clarify that costs prevented you from inviting more people.

Make Your Guest List an A-List Affair

Limiting the number of guests helps with both costs and logistics. Even if you are unable to reduce your list to 50 things, even reducing it to 100 will be a huge success. Smaller get-togethers not only allow you to save money and effort in planning, but also to spend more quality time catching up with loved ones.

Limit the Number of Plus-Ones

You can keep costs down by limiting attendance at your wedding to just those who are either engaged, married, in your wedding party, or in a lengthy committed relationship with the bride or groom. Beyond that, it is not necessary to provide space for each guest's plus one. Except in the case of a destination wedding, where guests should be treated like royalty, it is best to choose the side of generosity.

Try Budget Shopping

Surely not a single living female has not fantasised about wedding gowns that cost more than her very first car. Despite the fact that daydreaming about a couture gown is fantastic, there are plenty other stunning costumes available for a lot less money. There is a considerable risk of financial ruin if you put all your shopping eggs in one basket by frequenting expensive speciality stores like bridal boutiques and men's clothing stores. If you're hoping to save money, however, it wouldn't hurt to peruse the clearance racks. Because of the high cost of living, you will need to get inventive if you want to save costs. You can find a great dress for your wedding at a thrift store, even though it might not be your first thought.

Rent and Return Is Another Option

Don't bother looking for a dress for the wedding. Rental options are available. If you need a suit, try renting one from a reputable website. There are other places you can look for a cute little white dress, such as department stores and second-hand boutiques.

Something Borrowed

Taking the counsel of the old wedding proverb, go ahead and borrow as much cash as you think you'll need. This cost reduction can be applied to other parts of the wedding expenses, such the dessert or the decorations. Think back on the unique elements that made your friends' weddings memorable, and see if any of those items were saved.

Examine Your Accommodation Options

Even if your location doesn't allow glamping out in the open, your customers can still save cash by bringing their own tents and sleeping in the parking lot.

Make Several Room Reservations

If your group's members have a wide variety of hotel preference choices, it's best to book bedroom blocks at many hotels. Those less concerned with conveniences should stay at a campground or hostel, while those seeking the height of luxury should get a room in a top-tier establishment.

Make a Deal

If you are a AAA member or a veteran, you may be eligible for a discount on your hotel room fee. Potential cost savings could be as high as 10%.

Favors Should Be Abundant

Guests staying in less luxurious accommodations could be gifted a bottle of inexpensive champagne and a chocolate bar as wedding favours.

Consider the Great Outdoors for Low-Cost Wedding Venues

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Don't settle with the obvious choice of a banquet hall for your wedding reception.

You might have a beautiful ceremony at a park or some other outdoor location. It may be worthwhile to enquire at a venue with lovely outside area but no signs promoting wedding services.

Having a wedding on a beach, in the mountains, or in one's own backyard is ideal because mother nature provides all of the decorations. Outdoor events can save you a lot of money on venue and decoration costs, but the weather is never certain to be nice.

Need help planning your wedding? Check out our list of Wedding Event Planners here.

Select Your DJ Wisely

Entertainment options at weddings typically fall into three categories:

  • Recruit a musical group.
  • Find a DJ.
  • Get a friend to lend you their phone and a speaker dock (basically free)

The third option seems like it could save you a thousand dollars or more, which is appealing, but there could be problems. An experienced emcee is essential for guiding guests in the right direction.

Make a Playlist for Your Wedding

DJs are a great way to get the party started, but they can really rack up the bill. The proliferation of low-cost or even free streaming music services has made it easy to amass an unlimited musical library. Because you rule the music world, you can also ignore the DJ's questionable choices.

To defray costs, several service providers adopt advertising models. This won't happen if you sign up for a trial period that provides the same benefits as a premium membership. This approach won't cost you a thing and will spare you from an annoying ad break.

Communication Is the Key to Saving Money on Catering

It's ambitious to prepare a full course meal for a large group of people, but you may save money by creating the dessert and appetisers on your own.

Pizza and other party snacks won't look out of place at a casual wedding. Though most married folks lean towards having catered meals.

In all of your communications with local caterers, it is crucial that you be completely transparent about your financial limitations. Because of the severe competition in the catering market, most establishments will negotiate with you to find a fair pricing.

You might also contact your prefered neighbourhood eatery and ask how much it would cost to have them provide food for the number of individuals on your guest list. In order to show their appreciation for your business, local establishments may offer complimentary upgrades to your meal or other freebies.

Choose More Casual Bites

Compared to a buffet or family-style meal, the cost of a casual plated dinner can quickly add up. Money can be saved by eating in a restaurant where customers serve themselves. If you'd like to keep things chill, ordering takeout from a casual restaurant like a local barbeque joint, a go-to Mexican joint, or a hip food truck is a great option. If money is scarce, request that visitors bring food to share.

Manage Your Floral Budget

Purchasing flowers for a wedding is a major expense. Sticking to your chosen colour scheme and picking flowers that are in season and readily accessible in your area are both great ways to cut costs on your wedding flowers. Exotic, costly flowers like orchids are pleasing to the eye, but you should avoid buying them.

You can save money on your wedding flowers by utilising seasonal flowers and the following options.

  • Using vibrant native plants, you can make a strong statement with less.
  • Distribute the vases
  • Use flowers from your own garden of friends.
  • Use planters that were either donated or borrowed from neighbours.

Recycle Your Flowers

The floral arrangements from the ceremony might be used again at the reception. The impact would be stunning if you decorate the guest book table to match the floral profusion of the wedding. The flowers that the bridesmaids have brought should be put in pretty vases and displayed on the dessert table, at the end of the buffet, or wherever else that a splash of colour would be appreciated.

Keep Your Decorations Simple and Elegant

Don't be scared to let the wedding ceremony and reception location steal the show. When decorating, restrain yourself. If any of your activities are going to take place outside, make the most of the beautiful scenery.

These inexpensive design strategies can be used whether you're sprucing up an interior or outdoor space:

  • Crafting table centrepieces out of liquor bottles and mason jars
  • Set a candle at each setting in instead of fresh flowers.
  • Handmade serving utensils
  • Put a photo of you and your spouse when you were youngsters on each plate.

Make Your Own Wedding Decorations

Your wedding venue of choice should offer all-inclusive packages if possible. These bundles are convenient, but usually come at a significant cost.

You shouldn't go crazy with the decorations whether the wedding is taking place in a church, a lawn, or a country club.

To save money, check out the clearance department at a hobby store like Michaels. Beautiful decorations are available for usage in a number of ways, including as wall art, table centrepieces, and general home decorating.

The lighting design is another place where one can let their creativity run free. In order to enjoy from the enchanting light of white Christmas lights at your wedding, your big day need not take place in the depths of winter. Not only are these lights cheap, but you might not have to buy any if you borrow from friends.

Elope!

After reading all these suggestions, if you still feel like you can't afford a traditional wedding, you might want to consider eloping. You can save a lot of money by eloping, whether you choose an elopement package at a wedding venue or have your ceremony at City Hall. You can choose your prefered photographer without breaking the bank because many of them offer special rates for elopements. Looking for the Top Wedding Planner in Melbourne? Look no further and check out our ultimate list of Wedding Planners here.

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CONCLUSION

Starting a marriage with financial issues might be a recipe for disaster. The easiest method to control wedding costs is to create a detailed spending plan. An extravagant, one-of-a-kind party need not break the budget. When creating a budget, you should go for the sum of steps three through five. A reevaluation of your priorities may be in order if the total exceeds the threshold for the initial phase.

You shouldn't have your wedding somewhere just because it's close to home. Inviting guests to your wedding is the next step after deciding on a location. Instead of renting a fleet of limousines or buses for the wedding party, you can save money by having the senior guests take cabs to the ceremony and reception. If you do not know a priest or minister, a friend who is especially excellent at public speaking may be able to step in. Costs and logistics can be reduced by restricting the number of attendees.

Many businesses in the service industry rely on advertising methods to help reduce expenses. Join for a limited time and get all the perks of a premium membership at no cost to you. Get some takeout from a neighbourhood joint if you'd rather keep things relaxed. You may want to think about eloping if you don't have enough money for a regular wedding.

FAQs About Wedding Budget

As a general rule, plan to budget at least $100 per guest. If you're planning a wedding on a budget, one of the easiest ways to reduce costs is to invite fewer people and have a more intimate celebration.

It depends on the cost per plate, but most receptions for 100 people cost around $5,000 to $10,000, with the average cost being around $7,000. The average cost to cater a reception can vary, as the type of catering offered and the cuisine can both affect the cost per plate.

The most expensive parts of most weddings are costs associated with the reception venue, including the cost of renting materials, including tables and chairs, and serving food or alcohol.

Participants were asked to rate different wedding expenses and share which they felt weren't worth it or were a waste of money. Of those polled, 48.5% said wedding planners weren't worth the cost, followed by 36.7% who said videography and 36.1% who said wedding favours.
Best Ways To Pay For a Wedding
  1. Set a realistic budget. 
  2. Ask family and friends to chip in (when appropriate) 
  3. Save during your engagement. 
  4. Pick up a temporary side hustle. 
  5. Cut costs on lower-priority items. 
  6. Take advantage of credit card rewards. 
  7. Consider a personal loan.

CONTENT SUMMARY

  • Save money so you have something tangible to share with your partner when you begin your life together.
  • One of the best ways to keep wedding expenditures in check is to set a strong, well-defined budget in advance.
  • You should aim for the sum of stages three through five when making a budget.
  • It's important to weigh all of your alternatives, as doing things differently could save you a lot of money on your ceremony and celebration.
  • Once you've decided on a venue, it's time to start thinking about who you might invite.
  • You can save money by having the elderly guests take taxis to the ceremony and reception instead of reserving many limousines or buses for the wedding party.
  • Make simple decor like table mats and streamers with family members while they help you set up for the ceremony and reception.
  • Consider the amount of money you could save by inviting only a dozen guests instead of more than a hundred.
  • Limiting the number of guests helps with both costs and logistics.
  • You can find a great dress for your wedding at a thrift store, even though it might not be your first thought.
  • This cost reduction can be applied to other parts of the wedding expenses, such the dessert or the decorations.
  • Outdoor events can save you a lot of money on venue and decoration costs, but the weather is never certain to be nice.
  • In all of your communications with local caterers, it is crucial that you be completely transparent about your financial limitations.
  • Money can be saved by eating in a restaurant where customers serve themselves.
  • Distribute the vasesUse flowers from your own garden of friends.
  • In order to enjoy the enchanting light of white Christmas lights at your wedding, your big day need not take place in the depths of winter.

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