Of course, you’ll want it to be elegant, perfect, and just the way you’d always imagined. But you’ll need to understand (and you’ll learn quite quickly) that it won't always be a piece of cake! There are so many factors to be taken into consideration while planning a special event like your wedding day, and the primary and the most important factor, for most, will be: BUDGET.
The investment required to organize a wedding or celebration of this kind is one of the most crucial aspects of event planning, which needs to be conducted systematically. For some Brides & Grooms alike, it can be overwhelming to handle so many things at once, no matter the wedding budget. The good news is, it doesn’t need to be the only deciding factor, it is YOUR wedding, after all.
Each purchasing decision will be a personal one, and irrespective of budget, most soon-to-be Brides’ & Grooms’ will enjoy their special day to the fullest regardless.
With over 10 years of wedding planning and event industry experience, Team Wedding She Wrote totally understands the concept of ‘stretching’ your budget during your wedding planning journey.
Here are 6 Ways Brides Can Save Their Money Without Losing Their Sanity!
It’s true, for most weddings, the majority of the budget will go towards the food and bar, in other words, the catering. This investment depends on the kind of experience you’re wanting to deliver at your wedding.
You’ll consider things like canapés, shared platters, beautiful grazing tables, sit-down meals (family-style, buffet, or set menu?), delectable desserts, signature drinks, non-alcoholic beverages, and feeding your hard-working suppliers on the day!
It makes sense if a couple were to cut their guest list by 50%, they'd make huge savings on wedding catering! But if they were to cut it in half again too, RUTHLESS, that’s a 75% saving right there regarding one of the biggest costs on your wedding day, and you may not need to do much else to save money and your sanity, if you go with this top tip. ;) Haha.
2. YOU DON'T NEED TO INCORPORATE TRENDING DETAILS THAT YOU'VE SEEN ON SOCIAL MEDIA
Forget the tiny little details like personalized napkins and “Will you be my groomsman?” proposal boxes!
Details are of course important in everyday life, and equally important at your wedding, one of the most important days of your life.
Yet, in some of our wedding planning experiences… The little styling details don’t always go to plan! The reasons for this situation are not big reasons, and almost irrelevant in the scheme of things, but at the end of the day, it’s a cost that could be saved.
In one instance, stunning personalized paper napkins were not used, due to a state of emergency, where a destination wedding was unfortunately canceled, but their custom monogram napkins had a date stamp on them, and they couldn't really be used again, even if the client was to reschedule. After that moment, and the experience of wedding planning (or lack of) during the COVID-19 pandemic, we do caution people about date stamping customized items, just in case of date changes.
Also, Groomsmen aren’t like Bridesmaids… They don’t need the cute proposal boxes that you see on Pinterest and social media. They’ll happily be involved via text, and that costs zero dollars. What we’ve learned is, no-one (besides yourself) actually cares that much about the tiny details; your people are usually just excited at the fact that you’re entering a new chapter of your life, they’re not judging your table settings or how you asked someone to be in their bridal party.
The joy of a wedding is about BEING in the moment with your favorite people, celebrating connection, love, union, and family. It’s not about every single tiny molecule involved or nice-to-have details that don’t affect the overall experience, right? It’s especially true if you're on a BUDGET. Spending your money on bigger ticket items and experiences instead of minor details can be an effective way to save your wedding budget from extinction.
3. HAVE A RAINY DAY FUND BY SAVING MORE MONEY THAN YOU PLANNED TO SPEND!
You might be thinking that you can't afford to savemoremoney for your wedding. But the truth is, it can be one of the best investments of your life – in more aspects than one.
If you are spending a lot of money on your wedding, it's important to protect your investment and have some extra funds set aside in case of an emergency. The importance of saving money is not just about being frugal, it’s also about having a backup plan in case of unforeseen emergencies. After all, you never know what might happen in the lead-up to your big day, or worse, on your wedding day. It’s best to be prepared.
One of the first and most responsible things you can do as a soon-to-be bride as you start your wedding planning journey is to set aside a portion of your budget for emergencies. This way, if something does go wrong, and you need to spend money that wasn't planned for, you'll have the funds to cover it without it being too stressful.
Most soon-to-be brides are likely to go over budget due to the nature of the celebration they’re planning. It’s normal to be excited for one of the most important days of your life!
Enjoy the moment, you can always make more money, plus, you may be the lucky type to have generous people in your life and receive cash gifts to celebrate the new chapter of your life!
Either way, the good part about having a stash of cash is even if you do well with your wedding budget and you spend less than planned, you’ve got an instant Honeymoon Fund! Plus, there will be less stress knowing you have a contingency plan.
4. IF YOU'RE ALLOWED, SUBSIDIZE THE BAR.
Subsidizing the bar definitely helps nearly-weds save money without losing their sanity! If you’re allowed, as New Zealand wedding venues have their own individual terms, put on a bar tab that will subsidize the cost of non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages, and make the drinks selection ridiculously cheap, or a value-for-money deal, like 3 for $15!
You’ll stretch the budget you had (or didn’t have) for the bar, and most wedding guests will be more than happy with this. All you will need to do is mention it’s a Cash Bar when you send out your wedding invitations, so there are no surprises and they come prepared. The only surprise will be drinks that are cheaper than normal!
This money-saving method will also save your wedding guests from becoming too intoxicated too fast. Win/win situations are the BEST.
As long as your wedding venue (or whoever is in charge of the bar) is fine with this request, it shouldn’t be too hard to implement. Just check to find out the relevant terms of a cash bar for the space you’re working with (or are thinking about choosing) as you may or may not need an alcohol license depending on the location.
5. CREATE A LIST OF 'NICE TO HAVE' & 'MUST HAVE' ITEMS, THEN REFINE, REFINE, AND REFINE!!!
As you already know, there are so many nice things you can have at a wedding. Yet, when it comes to having a budget or being dictated by how much you can spend, you have to work out what's NECESSARY and what's NICE to have.
There are tough decisions to be made when planning a wedding. Youcan have everything, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, but you don't need to incorporate everything and anything nice and pretty, for it to be a beautiful experience. Remember that.
Create a list of all the things you need and want then refine this list and remove anything that’s unnecessary or nice-to-have items that you can live without on your special day. Then repeat this action.
True refinement seeks simplicity. Simplicity is the ultimate form of sophistication.
6. ELOPE! JUST THE TWO OF YOU (AND MAYBE THE CREW!)
Having been a bride who had a modest-sized destination wedding of 150-170 people, which is still quite small by Pacific Island standards. I still think elopements are super romantic to do! (Something that I had personally thought of several times due to the COVID-19 restrictions whilst planning my own wedding during the pandemic!)
Just the two of you pledging your love to one another in a beautiful and serene setting is such an intimate thought. This experience can be super emotional, adventurous, or whatever you want!
It's not rocket science that this celebration option for two will be a lot more affordable than a wedding with more guests. Sometimes the BEST thing that we can do for ourselves is to reduce our planning and focus on the execution.
Eloping is a good option to save money on your wedding and still have a memorable day. You can elope any time of year, not just in the summer months! It is less expensive than a traditional wedding and more personal. Eloping allows you to keep your wedding secret from friends and family members who would want to attend if they knew about it in advance too.
There are many ways to save money on your wedding without sacrificing quality. If there is any such way which you incorporated in your wedding, we would love to know about it!!
Mention in the comments below and tell us the decisions you made on your wedding to save the big bucks?!
Thank you for reading! XO
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