Planning a wedding sounds pretty magical until you actually start adding up things like venue fees, catering costs, and even the money you’ll spend on invitations to the big day. Sticking to your budget might seem impossible. But the best ways to save money on your wedding don’t have to be super extreme. With a little careful planning or prioritization, a simple swap could end up saving you hundreds of dollars.
An important overall tip is to figure out what’s important to you and your partner, and what isn’t. “Eliminate things that are not important to you or don’t add value to your priorities,” Boston’s Seaport Hotel & World Trade Center’s wedding expert, Leah Malin, tells Bustle. “Don’t feel the pressure to have a completely branded and customized wedding with lots of signage and over-the-top favors if that is not authentic to your taste and style.” Instead, figure out what choices will do the best job reflecting your personalities, and work from there. If something doesn’t bring any true value to the wedding for you, throw it out.
That being said, Malin says that there are some things that probably shouldn’t be skimped on, regardless of your taste and style. “There is nothing worse than inviting friends and family to a celebration and then running out of food or beverage, or not having enough staff to take care of those that have come from near and far to celebrate with you,” she says. Food for you could mean a three-course open bar wedding, or homemade finger food for everyone to munch on. Whatever route you go, be sure that nobody will go hungry.
Here are nine ways to cut costs on your wedding, according to experts.
1. Skip The Traditional Champagne
Traditionally, lots of couples have champagne or sparkling wine on-hand during speeches or toasts, but that’s really not necessary, wedding planner Catherine Bachelier tells Bustle. “If you time it right (just before dinner is served) most people will have a glass of wine or cocktail ready to go,” she says. This will completely eliminate the added expense of glassware and champagne. Besides, most people would only take a sip of two of the bubbly stuff anyway, says Bachelier.
2. Don’t Assume Everyone Will Eat Cake
You might assume that everybody loves cake, but that isn’t necessarily true. “Another cost-saving tip for the day of celebration is to remember that the cake does not have to serve all your guests,” Bachelier says. “80 percent of guests will opt out of eating cake after dinner.” If you’re super worried about running out, keep an extra less expensive sheet cake in the kitchen just in case.