Very few people plan a wedding with an unlimited budget. There are always areas where you know you need to cut back on your spending, and sometimes it can be overwhelming trying to find out ways to work with your budget.
Sometimes it’s hard to know where you should cut down, and on what things you should make sure you allocate as much as possible. And there are endless contradicting articles online and in wedding magazines to just make things more confusing.
Here are my thoughts on this topic, from my experience, both as a bride and as a wedding photographer:
Where to save:
– Forego the expensive floral decorations and swap for non-florals like lanterns and or paper pom-poms
– DIY the stationary. You can find the most stunning templates online that you can personalise and get printed for a fraction of the cost. Or keep it environmentally friendly and skip printed invites all together. Paperless Post have beautifully designed invites that you can send via email. You can also add tracking and RSVPs to your email invites so you can keep track of them.
– Don’t send invites individually. If you know that some of your invitees see each other regularly, you could send a bunch of them to one person, and ask them to hand them out next time they see each other.
– Swap champagne for prosecco or cava. Most people won’t even notice and it’ll save you a nice sum of money
– Look for venues that allow you to bring your own drinks. Being able to supply your own wine alone can save you around €20 per bottle. Just check to see if there are any extra corkage fees involved.
– Keep the guest list small. Be ruthless. Do you really want your work colleagues or your third cousins that you’ve not seen for 10 years at your wedding? Ask yourself if these are people that you would buy lunch for? If not, they probably don’t need an invite to your wedding either.
Where to spend:
– The Dress. This doesn’t mean it needs to be the latest seasons designer custom made gown, but it does need to be a dress that makes you feel absolutely amazing. Don’t be tempted with a cheap knock-off from China off eBay. Go to bridal boutiques and raid the sale rails or search to see if you can find your dream dress on pre-loved if you are on a budget, but don’t get a cheaper dress that you don’t love just because you are on a budget.
– The Photographer. Some articles will tell you that you don’t need a professional photographer, since all of your guests will have iPhones anyway. Have you ever been on Facebook after a wedding? There certainly are loads of pictures from the wedding guests. I’m not sure how many of them the couple would really love printed in an album to pass on to their children though. Even a generous offer from that friend with a DSLR should be carefully considered. Do they have back-up equipment in case something happens to their camera? Would you be comfortable posing in front of them for portraits? I’ve seen too many posts where couples regret their decisions to skip on a pro photographer. A great photographer can make a cheap dress look like Vera Wang, but a bad one can make a Vera Wang look cheap.
– A Destination Wedding Planner. If you are getting married abroad, having a wedding planner may cost you a bit more, but you’ll sleep so much better at night knowing that everything is being taken care of. Especially if you are getting legally married overseas, they will make sure that everything is done correctly so that you are actually allowed to get married.
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