Written by Paula Jones Last updated: October 10, 2006
Clever ways to keep your wedding costs under control and still have the wedding of your dreams…
Most couples pay a proportion of the budget with parents contributing to the cost. If you put all the money into one account it will be much easier to see exactly what you are spending and the balance left over. It is invaluable in helping keep track of when you overspend.
If you can get married on a week‐day rather than the weekend or out of season, you will probably be quoted less for venue, transport, etc. Plus, you are more likely to get the venue of your choice.
Remember that it’s the early bride that gets the deal. Start shopping around as soon as possible. Book your venue, caterer, photographer, and entertainer well in advance. Get it in writing that if they put their prices up you will only pay the agreed price.
By using your imagination to creatively arrange seasonal flowers rather than expensive exotic ones, you could save money and have larger, more colourful displays. Before you set your heart on a beautiful flower, check to see whether it’s in season when you’re getting married. Tea lights are inexpensive and can look magical when put on tables for an evening reception.
Make extravagant food, such as seafood as a hors d’oeuvre rather than the main course, which can then be simple. For dessert, serve a piece of the wedding cake that could be cut before you sit down to eat.
For guests under the age of twelve, ask the caterer to make up simple inexpensive meals. They will enjoy it more and you will pay less.
Serve sparkling wine for the cocktail reception and save the finest champagne for toasts only. Instead of having an open bar, have the bartender make up special festive drinks named after the bride and groom. At a midweek or Sunday evening event your guests may drink less, as they have to work the next day.
If your first night is being spent at a hotel, ask the manager if they include extras such as complimentary champagne, chocolates and fresh fruits for newly wedded couples.
Take a slightly out of season honeymoon. Of course you want to avoid monsoons and sweltering droughts, but can find bargains just away from peak times when the weather is still agreeable. Let everyone know it’s your honeymoon. The hotel might offer you a room upgrade.