Saving Money At Your
Do you have champagne taste and caviar dreams, on a white bread
and soda pop budget? Don't worry; you can still have a beautiful but
cheap wedding. Check out these great ways to cut costs and save money.
Consider a Country or Small Town Wedding
Venues, catering, and florists tend to be cheaper in small towns
than in large metro areas.
How to Save on the Cost of a DJ in Large Cities
One tip that can save you hundreds on a wedding DJ, if you are
having a wedding in a large city, consider hiring an out-of-town DJ who would be willing
to travel into town for your wedding. This might not sound like it would save at
first, but inflation in cities such as Toronto is so high that if you find a
DJ willing to travel, the savings will add up quickly. For example,
an average Toronto wedding DJ's cost ranges from $1200 to $2500. For The Music Man DJ Service to play in the GTA for
example, you would be looking at anywhere from $600 to $1100 depending
on the event.
Other Ways to Save on the DJ
Consider booking your DJ for a Buck & Doe, Stag or Jack &
Jill as well as a wedding. DJ's will usually charge less for multiple
bookings. Also, if you have a friend who is getting married as well,
book two wedding with the DJ together. This would work as long as both
couples can commit to the DJ at the same time.
the Dresses Custom Made
An experienced seamstress can often create a design from a magazine
picture at a savings of about 50% of what you would pay for an almost
identical brand label dress in a bridal boutique. When hiring a
dressmaker, designer or seamstress, look for someone well established or
well known with a good reputation. At the very minimum, find someone who
can provide you with at least 4 references of previous bridal clients
and CHECK those references. Also ask to see pictures of work she has
done in the past. Be sure that your designer/ seamstress has experience
specifically in bridal wear because there are many specialized
techniques involved in designing and sewing bridal apparel that someone
who rarely works with bridal may not be skilled with.
Your Wedding Dress
If you aren't particularly sentimental about
your wedding dress, consider renting a wedding gown. Most cities have
wedding gown rental shops which offer a nice selection of current
wedding gown styles and designs in a variety of sizes. You'll pay far
less to rent than you could ever purchase the very same gown for.
Trim Your Wedding Guest List
Each time you add a name to your
invitation list, you're increasing your budget significantly. It's not
just the catering costs, but also the extra centerpieces, favors,
rentals, etc. Don't invite anyone you haven't talked to in five years.
Don't feel obligated to let single people bring a date. Avoid feeling
pressured to invite all your work colleagues. And don't let your friends
bring their children. You can also decide to eliminate categories like
"relatives more distant than first cousins" or "friends from volunteer
work." By not inviting anyone from that group, you'll help avoid hurt
Save Postage on Your Wedding Invitations
Rather than having a reply card which incurs more printing and postage
costs, simply include a web address or email address on your invitations
to reply to. Not only will you save money from the printer bill, it
should also reduce your postage expense. Consider including a phone
number for those who may not have Internet access.
Sales and the Internet for Cheap Wedding Dresses
If you wear a 6,
8, or 10, check out sample sales, which generally happen once a year.
It's a great opportunity to get a designer dress at rock-bottom prices.
You can also look on eBay, Craigslist and other websites for deals on
used wedding dresses. Remember that cleaning the delicate fabric of a
wedding dress may cost up to $250, so avoid the cheap dress with the
filthy hem. And many towns have a shop where you can rent a wedding
dress, saving you hundreds and hundreds of dollars.
Learn to Ask for Help to Save Money
If you want to have a
cheap wedding, pool your friends' and family's resources. Think of
well-spoken friends who could be your officiant or reader during the
ceremony, and crafty people who can help you with invitations, flowers,
centerpieces and programs. They will generally be honored to be a
special part of your big day
Look for Cheap Wedding Food and
Be honest with your caterer about your need to save money.
Ask them which are the least expensive entrees and whether a buffet
is cheaper than a seated dinner. See if they'll let you provide your
own liquor, or if serving only wine and beer will be cheaper than a
full bar. Also consider only having the bar open during your
cocktail hour, then serving an inexpensive wine with dinner.
Most of eBay
eBay is a great source for everything from
second-hand dresses to wedding favors, cake toppers, ring pillows and
more. Be sure to allow ample time for the auction to end, and for
shipping. Look for trusted sellers whose feedback indicates they have
accurately represented what they have sold.
Don't go for engraving - regular printed
invites work just as well. There are a variety of cheap wedding
invitations available on the internet. For a casual wedding, consider
printing your own invites from your home computer. Stationery stores sell printed paper meant to use in a home printer as cheap wedding
Too Many Bridesmaids and Groomsmen
Have you ever seen a wedding with more than a dozen attendants? It
starts to look like a wedding army. Of course, if you are inviting lots
of guests, it makes sense to have a large wedding party. But before you
start adding your friend who you haven't seen since high school and all
of your cousins, consider what the role of the wedding party should be.
Even if you're not paying for the wedding party's attire, each of those
attendants requires a bouquet or boutonniere, a thank you gift, and an
invitation to the rehearsal dinner and other parties plus their dates.
Tack on just a few unnecessary bridesmaids or groomsmen and you're
potentially talking about hundreds of dollars.
Have Your Ceremony &
Reception in the Same Location to Simplify and Save
There will be no need for limos to take you to the second location.
This also makes it easier for out of town guests, since they won't have
to drive to two locations. Many churches have halls that are equipped to
handle wedding receptions at reasonable fees - especially if you are a
member. You may also be able to negotiate a cheaper price for using more
than one service provided at a particular location.
Having Your Wedding on Any Day but Saturday as Well as During the Off
Many halls, caterers, and other wedding service providers will often
give you a discount if you hold your wedding on an "off-day", such as a
Friday or Sunday. If they don't currently have such a policy, try to
negotiate one with them. For
even greater savings, choose a weekday
evening for your wedding while giving guests enough time to get home
from work. Also, the months of January, February, March and November can
be considered off season months for weddings.
Have Your Wedding at a Hotel and
Ask for Group Discounts
Reserve a block of rooms for your guests several months before the
wedding for the best rates. Speak with the appropriate manager when
asking for discounts and reserving rooms. Also, Ask the manager to throw
in extras. Use hotel house linens instead of renting others. Hotels and
catering halls have their own props and centerpieces that they are happy
to loan. Always ask for at least 10% off stated rates.
Save Money on a Photographer
Choose an experienced photographer who will include all of the
images on a cd for one low price. Then you can make as many inexpensive
copies as you need rather than pay a huge reprint fee to the
photographer. Also, put together a list the group shots you want, make a
detailed timeline for the day, and give a copy to everyone on the shot
list. If an album is not included in your wedding photography package,
consider doing it for yourself! That way, you can include the shots that
are most important to you, as well as any mementos like your wedding
Huge Wedding Cakes
Some couples only invite 50 guests, but they still order a cake that
serves 300. With cakes going for $2-$15 a slice, that extra size adds up
quickly. While a large cake looks impressive, a small cake can be
charming. If height is a priority, consider asking your baker to use a
separator set, add fresh flowers between the layers or use a large cake
Meaningless and Expensive Wedding Favours
Wedding favors can be a thoughtful way of saying thank you to your
guests. But far too often they're a meaningless knickknack. You're going
to spend a lot of money on things that will just collect dust, or end up
in the trash. I think it's better to not give favors, or to make a
donation to a charity. But cute favors include ones that are personal to
the bride and groom. You might give food favors from the city you live
in, or a box of your favorite chocolates.
Consider a Centerpiece
That Doubles as Something Else
For example, instead of one big wedding cake, put a small cake on
each table. The cake is the dessert and the centerpiece! Or, if you are
doing favors, put the pile of favors neatly stacked in the middle of the
table. Or, create a beautiful table number, possibly decorated with a
photo of the couple or a photo of a city the couple visited together,
and use that as the centerpiece, surrounded by inexpensive votive
Ask Your Caterer About the Availability of
You can usually save about 50% by ordering these special meals for
children of 12 years and under. A child's plate is usually a smaller
portion that the adult meals and, in fact, often consists of something
which will have more appeal to kids as well. This could include cheese
burgers and fries or chicken fingers instead of the finer dining you and
your adult guests will likely be enjoying. Many caterers will not
mention the option of children's plates unless they are specifically
asked because they make a larger profit by selling adult plates. So, if
you have a number of kids on your guest list, take this tip to receive
Save Money on Ceremony
Decorations or Flowers
Large arrangements on an altar will only be seen from
far away. Use inexpensive flowers such as carnations, or
large filling flowers such as snowball mums.
flowers that are in season. Possibly grow them yourself
or buy the flowers in bulk at a Farmer's Market and
arrange them yourself. Or, some trade schools that train
florists will arrange wedding bouquets for the cost of
Find a venue such as a park or garden that is already lush and
Avoid holding your wedding in February when flower prices are at
an annual high due to Valentine's Day.
For religious weddings, consider having your wedding near a
major holiday. The church will already be decorated,
saving you lots of money
Take the flower
arrangements from the ceremony to the reception; this
might halve your flower budget.