Wedding Budget Basics

We all know that today’s weddings are not as simple as they were when our parents got married. 30 years ago most couples got married in the church and then served cake, punch, and mints in the church hall.

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These days most weddings are an elaborate event. The ceremony can be just about anywhere. A beautiful cathedral, a industrial loft, a lush botanical garden… you name it and there is potential for a wedding. The ceremony is only the beginning of the celebration. Receptions are where the biggest part of your budget will go. With catering, entertainment, decor, and more it’s easy to see why.

Image via The Knot

Here are a few budgeting tips that can help you keep your budget in check:

  1. Watch your guest list. Each of these guests cost money not only in catering but rentals and venue space as well. Think about cutting your guest list to only those you really want and need to be with you on your big day.
  2. Pick a wedding date in an “off season”. May through October and recently, days that have consecutive numbers, like 11.11.11, are peak times and can cost more because of demand.
  3. Have your wedding and reception in the same spot. Often venues will offer discounted rates if you wish to use two of their spaces. One for the ceremony and one for the reception.
  4. The biggest part of your floral budget will always be flowers. Stick to more greenery and you will see your floral price cut.
  5. Keep costly flowers like peonies and orchids in your bouquet and have the florist design something more cost effective for your bridesmaids and centerpieces.
  6. Sit down dinners are nice but cocktail type service encourages your guests to mingle and is better on your bottom line.
  7. Offer a bar of beer, wine, and a signature drink rather than a full bar.
  8. Skip the champagne toast. Most will toast with the drink in their hand and champagne is almost always wasted.

What other budget questions do you have? How can we help?