Traditional weddings can get expensive but you shouldn’t have to compromise the wedding of your dreams, regardless of your budget.
After being witness to nearly 800 weddings, we’ve seen pretty much all shapes, sizes and styles. There is really no way to include every money saving tip in this article (it would never end.) However, we have compiled a list here of things we’ve seen and how they can help you plan your dream wedding on a budget!
Longer Engagements are Wedding Budget Friendly (or friendlier)
If you’re trying to stick to a budget, planning a wedding with a longer engagement is a smart move. Allowing yourself more time to plan means being able to shop for better deals. It also gives you time to collect things when they’re on sale and not paying premium prices for the sake of time. According to The Knot 2019 Real Weddings Study, the average engagement is 15 months long. If you’re newly engaged consider the season you want to be married and try to plan accordingly.
Get Married During an Off Season or Have a Week Day Elopement
If you haven’t set a date and are flexible to the time of year, getting married during an “low season” can be a great way to save money on your wedding. Another great way to plan a wedding on a budget is to have an elopement ceremony, read more about that here.
Save the Date Postcards are great for Wedding on a Budget
Do you really need save the date cards for your wedding? We think so; you can read more on why we think save the dates are important, here. A fresh new idea that is taking off in 2021 (again, lol) are post cards! With current postage prices on the rise, choosing a postcard style save the date can mean saving almost $0.20 per card.
Choose Multipurpose Paper Goods (Ceremony Program, Seating Chart, Party Favors, etc.)
It is not uncommon to see boxes and boxes of paper goods being tossed at the end of the night. Ceremony programs, seating charts, seat assignment cards, menus, etc. are all items that add up quickly in your wedding budget, but don’t have to! A great way to cut down on waste and cost is to combine these items into one!
A few months ago we hosted a wedding that used this out-of-the-box idea. After talking with the Bride about it that evening, I felt like it was an idea worth sharing. A table was positioned near the entrance of the barn that had envelopes with each couples names. Inside the envelope was a single card (5×7, same as invitation.) On one side, the card included all of the information pertaining to the evening including: order of events, bridal party information, table assignment & menu. The other side of the card was the couples name, date of event and a brief note from the bride & groom, thanking their guests for attending. Ohhhhh woooooowwwww, you say? (Insert sarcasm here.) While it may seem insignificant, for large weddings with 100+ guests, cutting down on the number of printed items can greatly impact your overall wedding budget.
Design a Wedding Website
Creating a wedding website can be a great resource for your guests. If planning brunches, rehearsal dinners, showers, etc. Listing these dates & times in one place can be helpful to keep everyone informed. Other information that could be included on your website include:
- wedding registries
- information about the venue
- preferences you have for attire
- directions to the venue or lodging locations
Designing a website for your wedding may not actually save you money. However, considering it offers many perks and is free, it is a great investment of your time!
Make Your Own Invitations to Keep Your Wedding Budget on Track
If you have ever used a computer, ever in your life, you can make your own wedding invitations! Etsy is an awesome place to find downloadable templates that allow you to customize yourself. Once templates are edited, you can print the invitations at home, send to a print store like office depot or text/email directly to your guests! Ordering custom invitations can become wildly expensive but with a little extra effort, you can have beautiful invitations for a fraction of the cost. Another helpful tip for those comfortable with using a computer, you can use Microsoft word to print on any size envelope ;) – you’re welcome!
Down Size Your Cake
Normally I would never tell anyone to get a smaller dessert. When trying to plan a wedding on a budget, cutting down on the size of the cake is a must. Traditionally, the top tier of a cake is saved for the first wedding anniversary. If you plan to thaw and share a piece of your wedding cake on your first anniversary, by all means keep this tradition alive. However, if you don’t plan to keep that tradition, be sure to mention that to your baker! 9 times out of 10 there is always a ton of cake left over. Opt for a smaller cake or less expensive options such as pies or cheese cakes and use that extra money else where!
Using Candles instead of Fresh Flowers is a Huge Wedding Budget Hack!
We couldn’t make a list of ways to plan a wedding on a budget and not mention candles. Candles are simple, elegant, romantic, and cheap! Consider trading large arrangements of fresh flowers for vases of floating candles. Adding petals or fruit to the vases is another way to add color without breaking the bank.
Beautiful weddings can get expensive, but they don’t have to be expensive to be beautiful. If you’re planning a wedding on a budget, don’t sacrifice things that are important to you, instead think outside the box!