When to Skimp and When to Splurge
The average amount a couple spends on their wedding in the United States is 25,200. Of course, many spend less and a few spend significantly more than that. However, the number is not surprising when you take a closer look at individual vendor costs. The venue can easily run above 10k, much more if there is an open bar. Invitations, flowers, dress, photography, dj – these all can cost a thousand dollars each or much more depending on the quality of the services provided. Certainly, quality, not cost, should be the deciding factor in some elements of the celebration. Still, there are ways to cut costs without compromising the feel of the big day. The key is to know when to skimp and when to splurge.
Skimp on invitations. Arts and craft stores offer have a nice selection of print-your-own invitations. While not as fancy as those from a print shop, DIY invites are generally classy, if simple. Savings: hundreds.
Splurge on photography. Do not hire your uncles grad students ex-girlfriends sister to take the pictures. Its not worth it to take a chance with the photos. The photographs are how you will remember and what you will show your children years later. Hire a pro, they are worth every penny. The professional wedding photographers will listen to your unique wedding photo ideas and stay committed to your vision. They are attentive to the emotional imagery of your celebration through film and portraits.
Skimp on favors. Half of them get left behind on the tables anyway. Go to internet bulk stores to find something cute that wont break the bank. Or DIY it. Savings: hundreds.
Splurge on entertainment. Whether a band or a dj is your thing, music is a memorable part of the reception. And you and the guests will remember whether you had a good time breaking it down on the dance floor or not.
Skimp on centerpieces and flowers. Fresh flowers are expensive. One cost-effective idea is to give the bridesmaids a single bloom of the flower that the bridal bouquet is made of. Do not use flowers for table centerpieces. Instead, get creative and make them yourself from less costly materials. Savings: hundreds.
Splurge on something unique to your union. Maybe youve always wanted to do a fun first dance. Take some lessons and have a dancer choreograph a number for you. Maybe your family is of Mexican heritage. So hire a mariachi band. Maybe you love the water. Have your reception on a boat. Every bride and groom should have something that is special to them on their day.
Skimp on cake and booze. Cakes are pricey, but there are easy ways to get around this. Order a two-tiered cake so you have something to display and cut. But serve your guests sheet cake cut in the kitchen. Or dont have cake at all – maybe pie or ice cream sundaes are more your thing. As for alcohol: an open bar at an average size reception will cost over 10 grand. Instead opt to provide one or two types of drink then allow your guests to pay for anything extra. Savings: potentially thousands.
First and foremost, a wedding is a celebration of two lives joining together. It shouldnt be a day that you are paying off for years in the future. By spending wisely you can have an unforgettable day nothing about which you will regret.