If you’ve recently gotten engaged, you’re most likely in a state of wedded bliss and dreaming of wedding bells, but here’s a fact to bring you back to earth. The average cost of a wedding in the United States is over $35,000. If that number seems astronomical to you, don’t worry. We’ve got you covered. Follow these genius budget tips to throw the wedding of your dreams without sacrificing quality and style.
Tips to Plan Your Wedding on a Budget
1. Send digital invites.
With the right approach and attention to detail, digital invites can be used as a replacement traditional invites. The final result will look just as beautiful, but it will cost a fraction of the price. Not only will you save money on paper and postage, but you’re more likely to get responses from the majority of your guests.
2. Host the ceremony or reception at home or outside.
The venue tends to cost half of the wedding budget. Instead of renting an event space for your ceremony and reception, consider hosting your wedding ceremony at the home of a friend, family member, or neighbor. You could also hold your ceremony on a beach or at a park. If you do decide on an outdoor service, make sure you have a solid backup plan in case the weather decides to act up.
3. Elope in Las Vegas.
Known as the wedding capital of the world, Las Vegas is chock full of affordable and beautiful wedding chapels. Wedding venues in Las Vegas vary from quick drive-throughs on the Strip to luxurious, upscale affairs. If the classic or traditional Las Vegas wedding isn’t for you, consider a wildly fun and imaginative themed ceremony, such as an Elvis or pretend wedding . Most credible Las Vegas wedding venue should have on-site ministers to help you exchange your vows and make your marriage legal.
4. Use a fake wedding cake.
Wedding cakes are surprisingly expensive. In fact, it can cost you anywhere from $6 to $15 a slice, depending on the number of tiers, types of filling and frosting, and custom decorations. This means $900 to $1,350 worth of cake for a party of 150 or so. Rather than spending too much money on a stale cake, save money by decorating a dummy wedding cake. You can still get the multiple-tiered cake you’ve always dreamed of but at a reduced price. Serve guests slices from a sheet cake you bought at the grocery store or a mom-and-pop cake shop.
5. Stock the bar yourself.
Alcohol is a costly expense, especially if your guests like throwing back cocktails. To limit your alcohol bill, offer just beer and wine or opt for a free cocktail hour followed by a cash bar. Also, consider skipping on the champagne toast. Instead, have your guests raise the glass they’re already sipping on.
6. Marry in the off-season.
During the off-peak months of January and February, you have a better shot at receiving discounts or other benefits than if you married in a peak month, which is May through October. The same goes for marrying on a weekday.
7. Limit your guest list.
Slash your budget by limiting your guest list to close friends and family. It may sound harsh, but you don’t need to invite your college roommate or your distant relatives who invited you to their weddings a few years back. A good way to keep your guest list from exploding is to limit plus ones and children under 18. If this upsets one of your guests, explain your reasoning. After all, it’s your big day, so you should make the rules.
8. Select in-season flowers.
Wedding flowers can cost an arm and leg, but if you’re thrifty, you can easily cut your flower bill down while still having beautiful arrangements. If you can, buy local, in-season flowers. You can even clip flowers from your own backyard.
9. Shop smart for your wedding dress.
According to The Knot 2018 Real Weddings Study, the average wedding dress costs $1,631, including alterations. Brides also spend an average of $250 on accessories like the veil, shoes, and lingerie. Save money by renting a dress, buying a used one, or searching for online sales.
10. Cut your wedding catering costs.
Between providing a delicious meal, desserts, drinks, and expensive china, wedding catering can reach astronomical amounts if you’re not careful. Skip the seated meal and the expensive wedding caterer, and instead opt for a food truck, buffet, or heavy appetizers and desserts to save money and satisfy guests.
How Much Should You Save for the Wedding?
Once you get engaged, put aside as much of your income as you can for the wedding. Aim for saving 20% of your monthly income. Keep in mind the longer your engagement, the more you’ll be able to put away. Track your wedding spending by creating a spreadsheet with three expense columns: Estimated, Modified, and Actual.
The Takeaway – A Beautiful Wedding on a Budget is Possible
Your wedding should be one of the most memorable days of your life, so you may feel pressure to plan an opulent celebration for you, your spouse, and your guests. However, there’s no need to go into debt. It’s possible to have a beautiful wedding, regardless of your budget.
Book an Affordable Las Vegas Wedding Ceremony Today
The Little Vegas Chapel offers affordable wedding packages to meet everyone’s needs and budget. If you want to truly picture yourself getting married in a Las Vegas chapel, ask for a tour of the wedding venue. If you have any additional questions about our traditional weddings in Las Vegas packages, contact The Little Vegas Chapel today at 702-385-5683!