The average cost of a wedding today is over $28,500. In today’s economy this can be very tough on couples. Fortunately there are many ways to save on your wedding and your guests won’t even realize it! Please visit A Wedding In A Box to see the beginning of this article and how to save on stationery, flowers, dress, guest list, and ceremony.
To save money on your reception get married on a Friday evening or a Sunday. You could do a cocktail reception with heavy h’ordeurves on Friday or you could do a Sunday brunch.
See if the reception venue will allow you to bring your own alcohol. This will save you quite a bit of money. Also, stick to a limited bar of soda, beer, and wine. You could add a signature cocktail to the mix also.
Another way to save is to have your ceremony and/or reception at a public building that is not set up to just do weddings. For example check out your local library or museum. Both provide beautiful backdrops which means you won’t need to dress it up, plus they are normally much lower cost. Or if you know someone with a beautiful back yard this would be a low (or free) venue.
Personalized CDs are a great, inexpensive favor. You can buy CDs in bulk at most office supply stores and if you watch the Sunday ads you’ll often find great deals. You can fill them with songs that have meaning to you.
Bulk candy is also inexpensive and can be dressed up with bags, boxes, or ribbons. Or you can put seeds into a terra-cotta pot for people to plant when they get home. Or choose a locally produced item (for example sea salt for a beach location). Or go with caramel apples for a fall wedding. You can make them yourself. The same with chocolate, you can buy chocolate molds in most any shape you want and make them at home.
One thing that many people don’t think of is to check with your local culinary school to see if they have wedding cakes as part of their curriculum. If they do they often charge only for materials so this can be a great savings. And the instructors keep an eye on every aspect of the cake making.
You can also avoid labor-intensive decorations and use fresh flowers instead of sugar flowers. Also, choose buttercream instead of fondant. If you like the look of fondant, most skilled bakers can replicate the look of fondant with buttercream. And the most popular way to save money is to have a smaller display cake or have a foam layer in the cake and then have a “sheet” cake in the back. Bakers will make the sheet cake almost identical to the real cake (same icing and fillings) and your guests will never know the difference.
All inclusive resorts are a great place to honeymoon. Food, drinks, and activities are all included so this can save you about 25%! You can also travel in the off peak season (check online for the destination you are choosing to see when their peak seasons are) or you can travel somewhere that the exchange rate favors the US. And often late night flights will cost you less. Also, you can register someplace like www.honeyluna.com where guests can send you gifts for your honeymoon.
As you can see there are lots of ways to save while planning your wedding! Another good idea is if you have a credit card where you earn points or cash back, use that for all of the expenses (just make sure you pay the bills off right away). You may earn enough money or points to pay for your honeymoon!