Help! How do I have a beautiful wedding on a budget?
It’s the new year, 2021 is finally here! It’s also one step closer to the big day. You feel so excited, yet worried and stressed. If financial pressures and stress are getting to you then read on. Before you spiral out of control into newly wed debt, think about how much you can afford and how much you have budgeted for your wedding day. Just because you’re not spending £20,000 plus, doesn’t mean you can’t have an unbelievable day.
There’s no denying that all the little added extras can really bump up the cost of your big day. Just because you’re getting married doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune. Buying your dress from a high street store, having homemade catering, asking guests to BYO booze… there are so many creative ways to help make your budget stretch further and give you the wedding of your dreams.
The average total cost of a wedding in 2019 was £31,974. Yikes! If that makes your toes curl then you’re not alone! Many couples would rather spend their hard earned money on a house deposit, holidays or something that will last longer than one day.
Brides spend an average of £1,098 on their dress, according to the magazine You & Your Wedding. There are an increasing number of cheaper options on the high street that look simply stunning. Don’t believe us? Take a look at these real brides and models wearing off the peg dresses and see for yourselves! Shop our gorgeous selection of wedding dresses and spend less than half of the average price.
Make budgeting your best friend
It’s so easy to break the budget and keep upping the wedding limit which you simply don’t have or can’t afford. It is totally do-able to have a fabulous cheap wedding you will love and remember in joy. You have to decide what’s important to you and your OH.
What can’t you compromise on? Do you need a sit down meal or will a hog roast or buffet be just as good? What’s your priority? Perhaps alcohol, photography, the venue or dress?
Ultimately your wedding day is about marrying the love of your life and best friend. If you’ve managed to get married, that’s the icing on the cake! You may not please everybody but it’s your wedding, your rules and you will do it your way.
Make sensible decisions
If you would love a wedding which costs up to £5,000 but think it’s impossible, think again! We have lots of tips and tricks for you research to give you a wedding day that’s beautiful and affordable.
This is your chance to start saving and really start thinking about what you can save on in your day-to-day lives. Do you make your own lunch everyday? Can you opt for a cheaper make-up brand instead of high end?
Use a jar that for the wedding placed somewhere you can see easily. Put your loose change in here and what you’d usually pay for lunch or takeaways. It’s surprising what you get by the end of the month! Pop it into an ISA savings account and watch it grow.
Try and cut back on the everyday things you spend on. Supermarket own brands are surprisingly good and you may even prefer it. Put the savings into your jar!
Instead of clothes shopping go into your local charity shops and see what they have to offer. Not only are you saving for your big day, you’re helping the environment and your purse.
Social events and catching up with friends is definitely a difficult one where will power must come into play. Don’t constantly go out for meals and drinks, take it in turns with your friends to cook a meal each and take a bottle of wine with you.
First things first, the majority of money usually goes on the venue. Check out our top 10 alternative places to get hitched without breaking the bank. You really do need to think outside the box here. There are so many venues you can dress up, decorate to make your own and pay much less for. From Restaurants to rented Airbnb homes, discover venues which aren’t necessarily created for wedding days but would totally work well as one.
Ultimately the smaller your guest list the less the day is generally going to cost. If you’re debating whether someone should be there or not, really think about who must be there to make your day as special as it can be with your nearest and dearest. if you’re questioning certain people, then that is a red flag to consider inviting them at all.
Top tip: Make sure you ask if your chosen vendors are happy to be paid by direct debit as it limits really significant amounts all having to come out at once. This will help you keep track on your budget and spending habits. You can have a wedding day on a shoe string if you get serious about budgeting, and what you both want and need in your lives.
Do It Yourself
Yes diy’ing can be extremely time consuming, but will definitely help cut the costs and make your wedding day more personalised. Use help! Use your contacts, DIY the decorations, ask friends and family to help you with making decorations, buy dresses from the high-street or second hand online and in charity shops.
There’s no need to spend hundreds on invites. Yes they’re beautiful however with brands like Ginger Ray and online wedding websites for under £100, people can RSVP easily and cost effectively.
If you have a think there will be plenty of people to help you out by making things for the wedding. They love you and will be more than glad to help and probably honoured you’ve asked them to get involved! Do you have a friend that is amazing with their make-up skills? If not what about the colleges near you? These often have students that are in their last year of training who would be pleased to do these things for you. It benefits them and you! One thing we must stress is not not choose an amateur photographer. Your photos are not something that should be done by anyone. Do your research!
Something else to consider would be fresh supermarket flowers. It may shock you how beautiful flowers can be! Big luxury Pinterest worthy bouquets come with a price tag and in all honesty, not everyone wants to spend that much on something that only lasts a day. Did you know that some supermarkets offer fresh everyday flowers at a fraction of the price of well-known florists? If you’re planning to DIY your wedding flowers you may not have considered a supermarket near you, but their extensive year-round offering make them the perfect alternative flower option for weddings.
So instead of spending hundreds on your bouquets, why not pop to the supermarket before your wedding and get creative? You could spend a couple of nights in with your bridesmaids, with prosecco at hand and embrace your inner creative florist skills!
They don’t need to look perfect, having a rustic homemade style is all part of the charm and fun! Make sure you go early in the morning to get the best selection possible, or even better, ask a member of staff beforehand when they take their flower delivery, so you can be the first in line when they’re put out on the shelves.
You can certainly cut costs by getting married in the week and later on in the day. Less food = less expense! A Thursday or Friday wedding for example will be cheaper than a Saturday wedding.
Summer weddings are extremely popular, as are Christmas winter weddings. Vendors charge their highest prices when their services are most in demand, such as for a summer June wedding on a Saturday. Try to be flexible with your wedding date and find out the cheapest months at your venue and if you can work around the dates and times.
Shop around and do your research
This seems an obvious one, however lots of brides get carried away and book the first place they see and fall for to secure, then are left with a huge bill and may start having second thoughts. Have you negotiated? Have you counter offered the venue? Shop around do the research. Ringing for quotes and being prepared to ask and negotiate is a big thing that brides and grooms tend to forget about, or maybe get too embarrassed to ask for. Remember, in life if you don’t ask you simply do not get!
Someone has to win, right? You’ll be amazed what you could end up winning. Wedding photography, wedding planning, cakes, dresses, décor, the works! Wedding blogs and magazines often host contests so make sure you enter as many as you can.
Ditch the things you don’t care for
Do you think favours are a little pointless? Not sure about all the seat covers, bows and decorations that you think are a waste of money and time?
Remember the cheapest way to say “I do” is to go down to your local registry office and have a ceremony with just the two of you and some witnesses. To be legally married, the costs start at around £120. That covers fees for the notice of marriage (£35 for each partner) and a brief registry office service on a weekday.
Anything on top of that is just for fun or prettiness! You don’t have to have any of it if you don’t want to. Your wedding, your rules. Are you having a budget wedding? We’d love to hear from you! How are you saving the pennies?