Weddings are one of life’s most important milestones, a precious opportunity to celebrate true love with friends and family. When planning a wedding, you want to create an event that reflects the commitment you and your partner are making, but you also want to make sure your guests have a good time.
Unfortunately, for many people the prospect of planning a wedding is anxiety-inducing. Not only does it require a good deal of work, the cost of weddings has been rising steadily: the average American couple spent $35,329 on their special day in 2016. For couples making plans for their special day, this can create a lot of pressure. You want to provide the best experience possible for yourself and the people you love, but you also do not want to start your married life off with a pile of debt.
Fortunately, you do not have to choose between a beautiful wedding and an affordable one. Here are some practical ways to save on your wedding without jeopardizing your financial health.
- Establish Priorities
With so many things to think about, from stationery, centerpieces, venue, the dress, and the food, planning a wedding on a budget requires establishing priorities. It is natural to splurge a little on the parts of the wedding that are most important to you, but you should plan the budget, so you create savings in other areas.
For example, if you have always wanted a big wedding reception with excellent food and drink and a live band, but you do not have your heart set on walking down the aisle in a brand new wedding dress, buying a pre-owned wedding dress is one way to save a significant amount of money that you can use to throw a fantastic party.
- Plan Ahead
As with many things in life, making plans in advance can help you save lot of money. Knowing what venues are available, finding a caterer, getting design work done — giving yourself time to find high-quality services that fit your budget can bring down your wedding’s price tag considerably. Having more time to shop around also gives you the freedom to buy more items second hand through online marketplaces.
When considering crockery and silverware, for example, you can keep an eye out for items that match your aesthetic and collect them as you see them.
- Use Your Networks
Not every part of your wedding needs to be professionally sourced. Many of the people in your wider network may well have skills they would be willing to donate or contribute at a discount. Before you spend top dollar for things like catering or music, ask people you know whether or not they would be willing to help you out. You can save a surprising amount of money by sourcing some of the more expensive parts of the celebration from your community.
Do you have a friend who takes great pictures? Ask if they would be willing to photograph your wedding at a discounted rate. Do you have a family member with a large property? Find out if they could host part of the ceremony, so you do not have to rent a hall. While you should never ask a professional to provide their services for free, friends and family may be willing to help you out at a heavily discounted price.
Your wedding day should be an opportunity to celebrate your love with the people you care about most. The last thing you want to do is spend your special day worrying about how much everything costs, but by buying pre-owned supplies, planning ahead, and calling in favours, you can create a beautiful experience for your friends, family and, most importantly, yourself, without breaking the bank.