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Saving Money on your Wedding

Wedding planning can be exciting but also stressful. There are many ways to save money on a wedding.

There are popular months and days of the week to have a wedding, and because it is more expensive when it is popular, couples can avoid them. Saturday is the most popular day of the week to have a wedding, and it can be cheaper to have a wedding on another day of the week. Having a wedding on a weekday can be cheaper because venues usually have discounts. The most popular season to have a wedding in the United States is fall, with 35 percent of weddings happening because the weather is not too hot or too cold. October is the most popular month, with 17 percent of weddings. The best season for a wedding for couples on a budget is winter, which is the least popular season. December is the least popular month, with two percent of weddings, and it can be a good month, but December can still be more expensive because it is a holiday month. February can be expensive because of Valentine’s Day. January is the best month for a wedding for people on a budget.

Brides can save on their wedding dress by buying it earlier, as buying it at least eight to nine months before the wedding means avoiding rush fees as much as $500 and last-minute changes that can be $100 to $300. Wedding dresses that have many decorations are expensive and brides can save by buying a simpler wedding dress. For brides who want a wedding dress that is too expensive, they can find a dress with a similar design by a less expensive designer.

Booking a photographer for eight to 10 hours instead of a full day, which is 12 to 14 hours, can be as much as $4,000 cheaper. Another way to save money is to use a less experienced photographer, as they usually cost less.

When it comes to invitations, couples can save money on printing fees by not using an interior envelope liner and save $1 per invitation. They can have a card directing guests to their wedding website instead of multiple cards for the other events such as the rehearsal dinner, welcome party, and the day-after brunch and save as much as $800. If they assemble invitations instead of paying to assemble them, they can save $7 per envelope. Escort cards can cost $3 each, and if they use a poster that costs $250, that means saving $50 for 100 guests. Instead of using individual menus, using one or two menus per table can mean saving 90 percent.

Couples can save money on flowers by using greenery instead of flowers or buy in-season flowers, which are less expensive. They can use the same flowers at the ceremony for the reception or use candles for the reception instead of flowers. That can also work for chairs, as the moving fees are cheaper than more chairs for the reception. Also, couples can ask their venue if they can borrow furniture for cocktail hour instead of renting furniture.

Instead of a traditional wedding venue, having the reception at a restaurant can be cheaper. It can also be cheaper to have the ceremony and the reception at the same venue, as vendors charge travel time paid by the hour. Another way to save money is to have a cocktail hour reception because usually a sit-down dinner means paying per plate. They can also have a buffet instead of a plated dinner and save $1,500 to $3,000 for 100 guests on staffing costs. They should order late-night snacks for only 70 percent of guests, as some guests may leave early and other guests will not want to eat. Couples can avoid hard-to-prepare foods such as sushi rolls. If they are getting married in a major city, a caterer from the suburbs is usually cheaper than a caterer from the city. Avoiding expensive linens can mean saving $25 per table. A brunch wedding is cheaper than a dinner wedding because the food is more expensive for dinner, and couples can save money on alcohol because guests usually do not drink in the morning.

If their venue allows them to bring their own alcohol, they have more control over the cost. It can also be good to have a different wine instead of champagne, as champagne can be expensive.

Couples can save money on cake by not using flavors such as guava and mango that cost more. They can also use fewer decorations because more decorations cost more money. Sugar flowers are very expensive and couples can use fresh flowers instead. It can also be good to have a small cake for the cake cutting and have a larger sheet cake in the kitchen for guests. If they do not want a cake, they can have a dessert buffet, which costs less than a cake.

When it comes to music, hiring a graduate student musician can be cheaper than hiring a professional musician. Couples who are having a band can save money by having a smaller band and if they have a band at their reception, they can also ask if the band can be at their ceremony. If a couple is thinking about a band or a DJ, a DJ is cheaper than a band. They can also be their own DJ and create their own playlist.

Weddings are usually very expensive, but they do not have to be. Couples can save money in ways that do not make their wedding less entertaining.

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