How to Budget for Your Big Day

by Susan Paige
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Weddings can be an expensive affair. In 2021, the average cost of a wedding in the U.S. was $22,500 making this momentous day memorable for more than one reason. Addressing the practicalities around your wedding day might sound unromantic, but the list of expenses incurred when planning a wedding can easily add up. It pays to plan these details in advance, helping you to stay within your budget and avoid overspending. In this article, we have provided some guidance on how to budget for your big day.

Create a Budget

Before you spend a single cent towards your wedding day, it’s helpful to sit down with your partner and discuss how much you are both able to contribute towards your day. You may have created a wedding fund already which will give you your final figure or you plan to dip into your shared savings or take out a loan. Perhaps your parents or grandparents have offered to contribute towards your wedding or a specific aspect such as the venue hire, in which case you would include their donations to your total.

With a final figure in mind, you can then create a budget and begin allocating your funds accordingly. The more detailed you can be, the better. List all of the costs you can think of such as catering, party favors, venue hire, wedding attire and wedding rings. If you only plan to wear your wedding ring once you are married, find out how to sell an engagement ring online, as this can also help you put money towards your wedding.

Make your list as exhaustive as you can, taking into account unexpected and hidden costs that might crop up such as wedding dress alterations, corkage or hair and makeup trials. To cover for every eventuality, set aside at least 5% to 10% of your budget as a cushion.

Attend Bridal Expos

In the run up to your wedding, bridal expos can be a great way to give you inspiration on what to wear, how to style your venue and generally familiarize yourself with all things wedding.

With everything from photographers and florists, caterers and DJs, bridal expos can be the perfect event for planning your day as well as offering many prize giveaways and free stuff for your wedding. From honeymoons to hand mixers, tuxedos to  treatments, attending a bridal expos can be a fun and creative way to spend your day while potentially saving money towards your big day.

Set Your Guest List

The size of your guest list will influence many of your other costs such as catering, venue size as well as the number of invitations to produce and the cost of postage. It will even determine the size of your wedding cake.

The cost per head is usually based on how much it costs to cater for one person. If you have some venues in mind or are planning to bring in a separate catering service make sure you understand the cost per head before confirming your decision. It may mean revising your guest list to reduce the numbers slightly or choosing a different venue or caterer. Consider staggering your invites or making it an adult-only wedding to give you a clearer idea of your final numbers.

Follow the three tips in this article to help you plan the perfect wedding within your budget.

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