Weddings are expensive. In fact, the average cost of a wedding in 2016 was over $35,000. Personally, I think that is just plain crazy. I understand that it is a significant part of two people’s relationship, but it is only one day of hopefully many years of wedded bliss.
The problem is that many people cannot afford this much for a wedding. What are they left to do? Many decide that going into debt for their wedding is a fact of life.
But here is where thinking outside the box can save you tremendously. The following are tips for how to throw a wedding on a budget.
3 Wedding On A Budget Tips
#1. Buy A Used Wedding Dress
I know what you might be thinking, but before you shut this idea down, hear me out. Spending thousands of dollars on a dress that you are only going to wear once is crazy. To save money, look at consignment shops that sell used wedding dresses. Many times these consignment shops will have last year’s model wedding dresses as well for a discounted price.
These dresses are just as beautiful and after some tailoring will fit just as well. The only difference between these and the dresses at typical bridal shops is the price tag.
My wife went this route and bought a used dress for $600. It was beautiful, as was she. In fact, everyone commented on how amazing the dress was. They thought she spent thousands of dollars when she only spent a few hundred.
She never thought about it being used. She was focused on spending our money on the things that matter the most to us on our wedding day.
#2. Don’t Have A Fancy Reception
The reception is what typically costs the most. I couldn’t believe when we first started looking the prices per plate that venues were charging!
To cut costs here, you can do a myriad of things:
- Hold a “pot-luck” where everyone brings a dish to eat
- Have your reception in a park or at a friend’s house that has a large yard
- Hook up you iPod with tons of music and play it through an external speaker system
- Consider buffet style versus a sit down affair
These are just a few tips when looking to save money on a wedding. My wife and I sat down and thought about what was most important to us: the music and the food.
Because of this, we spent a little more on these while cutting back on the venue, centerpieces and decorations. After the reception, no one noticed the lack of decorations or the condition of the venue.
All they commented on was the great food and great dancing. And it’s been 4 years since our reception and people still comment how awesome it was. We cut corners and costs everywhere we could expect on the two things that mattered the most.
#3. Accept Nothing Is Perfect
I know every bride wants to have their wedding day be perfect. Let me break the news to you, nothing is perfect. Something is going to go wrong. It’s life. The sooner you accept this, the sooner you can begin to be rational with your wedding budget.
We recently went to a wedding and as the bride was walking down the aisle, there was terrible feedback from the microphones and the speakers playing the music. It continued into the start of the wedding.
Eventually they had to stop the ceremony to fix the speakers. While she could have been upset, she remembered what was important that day, which was entering a marriage with the person she loves the most.
Think of all the little things with a wedding and pick where you can cut costs. There is no need to spend thousands of dollars on the wedding invitations.
People are going to see them, then throw them in the trash. In 5 years, no one is going to comment on your wedding invitations. And if they do, they need to find a hobby.
Throwing a wedding on a budget is possible and most of the people that come to the wedding will never know you threw it on a budget.
Focus on spending money on the things that are most important to you and then cut back on everything else.
As I said, no one knew my wife’s dress was used. No one cared about the wedding invitations or the venue. They all said that the food was amazing and it was the best party they ever were at. That is what we were going for, to have a great time. And I am here to tell you that you can have a wedding on a budget.
There is no need to go into debt and add stress to the beginning of your new life. Remember what is the most important thing on your day and celebrate that.
Hi, my name is Jon and I run Penny Thots. I blog about many personal finance topics, but my specialties lie in investing, paying off debt, and achieving your financial goals. You can learn more about me on the Author Page.