Hannah Maundrell, Cash Coach from money.co.uk offers seven ways to make your wedding budget stretch further;
The average wedding costs an eye watering £25,000, which isn’t far behind the amount you’d need for a deposit on a house. You don’t need to spend this much to make your big day perfect.
Here’s how to make your money work harder so you get the day of your dreams without blowing your budget.
1) Split your wedding celebration in two
Venues that have marriage licenses are more expensive because they’re in high demand. Consider splitting your celebrations to get more bang for your buck. Do the legal bit at a registry office with a couple of witnesses then throw a separate party to celebrate somewhere that is special to you. You’ll save on expensive venue fees and get the celebration you want rather than what a licenced venue will allow.
It’s worth booking a ‘party’ rather than a ‘wedding’ when you’re looking for a venue; as soon as you mention the ‘w’ word the cost can shoot up.
2) Be smart with your catering
Your second biggest expense will be catering. A three course sit down meal is the most traditional option but also the most expensive. A buffet, BBQ or huge paella are all cheaper, more sociable and a lot less faff. Asking guests to bring their own booze is another way to cut costs.
Cut and serve your cake straight after the wedding when you’re having photographs taken to stop guests going hungry. It saves on canapes, soaks up fizzy and will be more appreciated than after the main meal when everyone is already full.
3) Put your honeymoon on hold
Dramatic as it sounds it’s worth considering. Going on a luxury break immediately after you get married is bound to put a strain on your finances. It’s a nice tradition but not a particularly practical one - there’s always so much to do in the aftermath of a wedding. Put it off for a few months or go on a mini-moon, giving you time to spread the cost and something else to be excited about.
4) Call in wedding favours early
Getting your friends and family involved in your day will make it feel even more special and it will save you a fortune too. If your Uncle Dave is a great photographer and your cousin Sam is studying video production at university suss out if they’d be up for gifting their talents in lieu of a wedding gift.
5) Guest list vs show-stopping day
If you want to treat your guests to an unforgettable day of luxury but your budget doesn’t quite stretch you are going to have to be strict about who you invite. It’s difficult but you’ll have to weigh up what’s more important to you – who comes to your wedding or the experience you give them.
To help you decide who makes your list ask yourself the following:
- Has your partner spent any time with them?
- Have you spoken to them this year?
- Would you buy them dinner?
- Would you be gutted if you weren’t invited to their wedding?
- Would you create a family feud if you didn’t invite them?
6) Know what you’re not going to need
Weddings mean big business and companies have really taken advantage of the fact people don’t want to scrimp on their big day. Don’t get carried away ordering personalised napkins, white umbrellas, chair covers and other non-essential items as tempting as it may be.
7) Get yourself a wedding website
Creating your own wedding website sounds technical but its super easy, free and will save you time and money. You can send your guests e-vites, saving money on printed invitations and postage and you can keep your guests informed of any last minute changes all at once.