A wedding is probably the singularily most expensive “party” you will ever throw in your lifetime, and it’s amazing how quickly everything adds up.
Aside from the obvious suggestions, (i.e.: cutting your guest list, having a dry wedding, etc.) here are 5 more things to consider if you are trying to save money on your wedding:
1) Host your wedding in the morning or the afternoon - Chances are when you think of “wedding”, you immediately picture a dinner and dance type of event. But in my opinion, some of the best weddings are followed by a brunch instead. First of all, you would be saving money on a DJ. You could add a couple of extra hours onto your package with your ceremony musician in order to provide some music while you and your guests eat. Second, you will save a LOT of money on alcohol! Even if you provide Mimosas or have a Champagne toast, the total alcohol consumption will still be significantly lower than a cocktail, dinner and dance wedding. If you decide on an afternoon wedding, you can provide finger foods and appetizers as opposed to having a meal.
2) Make your decor work “double-duty” - If you have a separate venue for your ceremony and your reception, decorating both could be costly. Instead, choose decorations that are easy to transport and have them adorn the ceremony site and then be transferred (by a friend, or wedding planner!) to the reception site. Most of your guests will never know that they are the same decorations and it will also help to carry your theme from start to finish!
3) Let them eat something other than cake - Personally, I LOVE a good wedding cake. But, if you need to cut costs, there are plenty of fun and trendy alternatives to the traditional wedding cake. Consider cupcakes, cookies, tarts, donuts, brownies, pie or a even Rice Krispie cake! Your guests will love the novelty and more often than not, you will also save on the cake cutting fee charged by most venues. If you still want the “cake” effect, simply arrange your treats on a tiered cake stand.
4) Limit the alcohol consumption - Let’s face it, alcohol is a big part of weddings and it can be difficult to go completely without. One of the ways you can save money is to limit the hours that the bar is open. For example, you could close the bar during speeches; or, if you are serving wine with dinner, close the bar during the meal. Another way to save money is to ask the venue to serve the wine to each table as opposed to leaving a bottle of red and white at each table. You could also request that the venue only serve domestic beer and common spirits as these are a lot cheaper than imports.
5) Consider renting a car as opposed to a Limo - Most limo companies offer a package of a certain number of consecutive hours, which could amount to almost a thousand dollars. If a limo is not a big deal for you, you may want to consider renting a vehicle or two instead. Car rentals are charged daily, which means that if you get your timing right, you may only need to pay for 1 day’s use. However, keep in mind that most car rental companies cannot guarantee you a make/model or color of vehicle. If you let them know it is for a wedding, they will do their best to provide you with a more neutral-toned vehicle, but do not assume that it will be guaranteed. Or, if you know someone with a vintage car or even an RV (talk about your amenities-on-wheels!), see if they would be willing to let you borrow it for your wedding.