The hardest part of planning a wedding is budgeting. It seems no matter how much you save, there is always something unexpected to pay for. The average budget for a wedding in America sits around $28,000 for both the wedding ceremony and the after-party. This average sum is difficult for most working people, so let’s see if there are ways to shave off some expenses and still have the wedding you have always dreamed of. Here are the items that you need to think about when budgeting for your wedding.
The wedding venue is often the most costly part of the entire day. This is where everything is centered, so it makes sense that you want to find the ideal spot possible. However, there are ways to find a cost-effective venue without compromising on quality.
One way to save on costs is by booking a venue that is local. A church wedding may be part of your overall plan, and you can still have it. Unfortunately, you are going to have to think about getting all of your guests from the church to the reception venue. This is where a lot of money goes. Most of your guests will be able to drive themselves, but not all. By booking a venue closer to the ceremony, you can cut out a lot of travel costs.
Another way to save money on a venue is by looking at the way you are expected to pay. Some venues require you to pay a flat fee for the entire day; however, you are at the church during some of this time. Instead, try to look for venues that charge hourly rather than daily. That way, you are only paying for what you are using.
Surprisingly, the second-largest expense in the wedding budget comes from the bride’s beauty regime. It is a huge part of the day, and you do want to look your best. Try not to let that stop you from saving a bit of money where you can.
Big-name salons charge through the teeth, weddings are their main source of income. They do a good job; however, you may find that a freelance stylist is just as effective. These individuals will charge less for their services, and you will be helping someone who is finding their feet.
Shrink The Guest List
There seems to be some confusion among the general public about who you should invite to your wedding. There is going to be the odd person that you do not know that well, but you feel they should be included by association. We all have that one awkward colleague, and you want to avoid the guilt of not inviting them. Unfortunately, the more people you invite to the big day, the more expensive your wedding is going to be.
You can spare the feelings of everyone not invited by setting a cap on the number of guests. Stick to just close friends and family, as it were. However, if you are really stuck on how many people I should invite to my wedding, then you should check out the Greenvelope’s guide. They have a way of breaking down your list by order of importance, and it is worth a read if you are struggling.
Plan Everything Yourself
Hiring a wedding planner does not cost as much as you may think, but it is still an expense nonetheless. While these professionals can save you time and reduce the stress of planning such a large event, there is no reason why you can’t do these things yourself.
You are the one that knows exactly what you want from your wedding, and also what you can afford. A wedding planner is likely to push for the more expensive options as they believe in quality; however, you have the budget to think about.
Avoiding a wedding planner doesn’t mean that you have to do everything yourself. You will have your family around or the maid of honor to pick up the slack when things get too much. A wedding planner is a nice option, but you will find it an unnecessary expense if you are trying to keep costs down. Ask those around you for help instead, and you will have a much more enjoyable time planning the day.
A key part of the wedding is the photographer. These are the people responsible for ensuring that you look back on this day with a smile. A wedding photographer is not going to be the most expensive part of the wedding by any means, but you still want to hire the best person for the job.
The best way to save some money on a wedding photographer is by booking early. The wedding business is highly competitive, and the photographer may be occupied elsewhere if you pick a popular wedding date. This means that they may charge you more for the inconvenience of having to rush between two locations. By getting in there first, you ensure that you are paying the initial, cheaper fee rather than stealing their focus from elsewhere.
Furthermore, you will also save money by opting for a digital photo shoot. Real film will give your pictures a classic look, but this method of photography is becoming rarer, hence its lofty price tag. Digital photos look just as good, and you can always add a bit of flair with touch-up technology. There is no need to go mad with this software, but there are filters that you can use to make your wedding photos look like they were shot on film without you having to pay for them.
At the end of the day, it is your wedding. You will know exactly what type of experience you want to create, and that sometimes means stretching your budget a bit further. There will be experts you can consult for advice. However, these tips should make some expenses easier to handle without compromising on quality.