Planning your wedding is a big undertaking with a lot of financial resources necessary to create your wedding vision, and it’s easy to end up spending more than you originally planned. To give you an idea the average cost of an Australian wedding is now approximately $32,940. Of course, your budget is always going to depend on your own personal circumstances. Whether it’s a low-key ceremony and reception with family and friends, or large and lavish affair, it’s important know your financial limits and stick to them. If you are not sure where the money for your dream wedding is going to come from, here are some tips on how to get creative to stop blowing out the wedding budget.
Create a realistic budget
As you are planning your wedding budget, become even savvier in negotiating deals for your big day. Consider where you can find discounts or less expensive ways to access services or items you need. Coming out of COVID-19 the industry will also be more agile and dynamic in its offerings, knowing an evolution of celebrations and demands for Weddings is upon them.
Be upfront with suppliers
When gathering quotes for your expenses, don’t be afraid to be upfront with the supplier. Be open to compromise, but don’t let vendors talk you into blowing your budget. For instance, if you are trialing bakers for your wedding cake, let them know exactly how much you’re willing to spend and what you’d like for the price.
Plan the must-haves
When planning your nuptials, it’s important to list what you and your partner consider to be must-haves. There are many elements to a wedding to consider, including reception venue, ceremony venue, celebrant, flowers, food and beverage, and the list goes on. The key is to figure out which is most important to you both, and how the spend will spread over the other elements.
Skip the engagement party and kitchen tea
Ask yourself if you really need to throw an engagement party, kitchen tea event, hen’s and buck’s parties. It could be enough just to throw one party that covers all of these, or forgo some that aren’t important to you. A modern option could be a combined hen’s and buck’s party.
Go with e-invites instead of paper invitations
Digital invitations are on the rise, as a cost-cutting solution. It’s also easier and cheaper to invite guests via Facebook, email or by asking them face-to-face, rather than printing out expensive save-the-date cards and wedding invitations. If there are guests who aren’t on social media, print invites for them only.
Off-season time of year or dual purpose venues
If the time of the year you get married isn’t really that important to you, consider having an off-season or mid-week wedding. Many venues put on winter specials. Perhaps you know someone who has a beautiful outdoor setting on their property for a wedding. Consider venues that can host both the ceremony and reception in one place. Another hard but often very effective cost-savings measure is simply to keep your wedding small.
Consider ways to cut down on food and beverage prices
You may choose to stick to serving only beer and premium wine over top-shelf wines, spirits and cocktails. Do you prefer to mingle with your guests, then a cocktail reception is a much cheaper option than a traditional sit-down 3-course dinner. Jump on the latest food truck trend, and save money by providing your guests with one type of food. Are you, or someone you know a great baker who could whip up a wedding cake instead? Wedding cake alternatives like cupcakes or donuts are a cheaper way of providing dessert, especially if you don’t mention to the supplier that it’s for a wedding.
Simplify your Reception styling
Choose a venue that doesn't need much décor, like a beautiful outdoor park/garden or have your ceremony and reception at the same venue. If you are going to DIY, be realistic about what to DIY, and what not to DIY, because sometimes having to get all the materials yourself and spending the time on the projects costs you more than hiring someone else to make or do it.
When decorating with fresh wedding flowers at your ceremony, fill the arrangement with more greenery and foliage that is not as expensive as full blooms. If you are a bit of a green thumb, look in your own garden - you may be surprised at what you can use. Take the flowers from the ceremony to the reception - there’s no need to buy completely new flowers for each.
Bouquets, buttonholes and corsages
Your attendants don't have to have professionally made corsages and button holes. A sprig of eucalyptus leaves, rosemary, a ribboned frangipani, a single rose or an orchid, can sit in nicely on their jackets and fit perfectly with your wedding theme.For a bridal bouquet, a bunch or freshly picked daisies straight from the garden will add to the earthiness of a country wedding or a trimmed bunch of roses from the florist (minus the thorns). The bouquets won't last much part the ceremony, if that's ok with you.
Think about alternative entertainment
A live band, string quartet or DJ is a nice option, but can get expensive. Think about plugging in an iPod with a killer Spotify playlist. You can even ask guests to add their favourite songs to a specially-created wedding playlist ahead of time.
Get your guests on social media
Everyone with a smartphone can be an amateur photographer, so if you prefer to live in the moment, you might be able to create a hashtag and encourage guests to post to social media with it. You could also pass around a Polaroid camera to take candid happy snaps. A photo-booth is also another money-saving option. See if you know or can network an up and coming Videographer who might be willing to charge far less but have a portfolio or recommendation from you for future work.
Honeymoon where you have your wedding
A destination wedding could combine a honeymoon with the wedding. Make sure you tell the accommodation you are booking that it’s a honeymoon, as they usually provide an upgrade, or send some complimentary treats.
Decluttering to boost savings
If you have a lot of household goods, then finding ways to sell them for the most money can be helpful to boosting savings. Find the best way to sell like items. So, while a garage sale might seem easy, it likely will not net you much money despite how many hours you might put into organizing and planning a garage sale. Instead sell on online markets or find niche markets for selling used clothing, electronics or other items that can be worthwhile to sell privately. Even after the wedding sell as much as you can after the wedding, ie buy items that can be easily resold versus renting them!
Get help from the family
If your parents are able to help fund your wedding, lucky you! Find out how much they’re willing to contribute in the early days of planning, so you can figure out how much you need to save to make up the difference.
Have a safety net
Finally, have a contingency plan if something goes wrong and you need to spend a little more than what you first planned. Having anywhere from $1,000-$5,000 in your contingency will allow you to cover last-minute or hidden costs without blowing out your budget.
Find the perfect dress
At Forever Bridal we specialise in off-the-rack Wedding dresses which is cost effective and will allow you enough time to organise alterations and customisations if necessary. It is recommended you purchase your wedding gown at least eight or nine months out to avoid disappointment and last-minute alterations. Read more about Wedding Dress FAQ’S