How To Plan Your Dream Wedding On A Budget
We know Megan and Harry took the cake for the wedding of the year. There was no competition. Literally, everybody and everything was there. However, the price tag of their royal wedding does not exactly line up with the everyday reality of most Americans seeking to get married.
We want a grand experience similar to that of a royal wedding, without comprising personal finances.
Here is a list of tips to cut costs on wedding expenses and achieve the glam wedding of your dreams based on insights from Promo Codes Consumer Savings Expert, Jill Caponera who is all about teaching people to save money:
1. Negotiate for a lower price
The first step tip that might seem obvious is to negotiate price and contracts with the people you employ for your wedding. Caterers, photographers, florists, and DJs will often work with your specific budget. Don’t take their offering rate was set in stone.
Be willing to negotiate and or walk away if you cannot afford a rate being offered to you. For example, ask your caterer for sample menus and prices per person, then see which areas you can cut back on (i.e., perhaps you only need two passed hors-d'oeuvres instead of five). This will help you to go back and negotiate the price down for their services. Photographers, florists, and DJs will also usually be willing to come down on prices in order to close the deal.
2. Opt for family style service dinner
Choosing a family style dinner with shared platters that can be passed around the table can save you up to 20% off your catering cost. Although formal catering is nice, it is not always well-suited for everyone’s wedding, and the experience they would like to receive from their wedding. It can also create a warm atmosphere for people who would like to have smaller and more intimate weddings.
3. Shop for used wedding dresses
If your dream dress is out of your budget, try finding it online from second-hand wedding dress sites such as OnceWed.com or StillWhite.com. You can save up to 75% off wedding dresses that have been pre-loved, dry cleaned and preserved for their next owner.
Another alternative is renting out formal wear. You can rent a dream wedding dress instead of dropping thousands of dollars to wear it for one occasion. The same goes for the suit for the groom. Suits can also be rented and is a great way to cut costs on materials that do not have long timelines in terms of how often they will be worn.
4. DIY your wedding flower arrangements
Often times, floral arrangements can be the biggest budget-buster, but a little-known fact is that you can buy flowers, bouts, and corsages in bulk from Sam's Club and Costco, which can save you thousands when compared to working with a florist.
Figure out your wedding colors, watch a few YouTube tutorials on how to put together an arrangement, and you're all set!
5. Skip the fancy wedding cake
3-tier wedding cakes can set you back hundreds of dollars, and more often than not, guests are having too much fun to even notice if there was a cake at all. Opt for a single 6-8 inch tier cake atop a Styrofoam base, so you can still get your cake cutting photos.
You can also take the rest home with you for your one-year anniversary. If you still want to serve cake to your guests, purchase a few sheet cakes from Costco or your local bakery for about $40 a piece- your guests will never know the difference.
6. Forget the wedding linens or bring your own
If your venue has wooden tables that don't need to be covered, opt for a rustic look without linens which could save you between $500-$1,000.
If the provided tables need to be covered, buy a pretty fabric in bulk online or at your local craft store and DIY your own linens for major cost savings. There are many resources available, especially visual such as Youtube that can help you get started on customizing your own linens.
7. Ask a friend to officiate
You can save between $200-400 by asking a friend to officiate your wedding. A friend can easily get ordained online for around $50. Also, if you do not feel comfortable with asking a friend to officiate for the first time, asking someone you are close to who has had experience officiating weddings is another alternative.
Weddings are a beautiful and wonderful time for everyone involved, especially when finances are not an issue. Everyone would like to have the wedding of his or her dreams. These are just some tips to turn your dream into a reality.
Article by Ada Amadi, the content management intern for Clever Girl Finance. She is an avid budgeter and passionate about women becoming financially literate and empowered.