Let’s face it: weddings are expensive affairs. But that doesn’t mean you need to spend a fortune on this “once-in-a-lifetime” event. Keep the spending to a minimum and still have an awesome wedding with these ideas for paying less.
#01 Look Past The Wedding Label
Wedding gown, wedding flowers, wedding shoes… and the list goes on. When anything is marketed with the word ‘wedding’, its price doubles. So why not source for the items you need by calling them what they really are – white dress, rustic flower bouquet, white heels, etc. They are essentially the same thing but with a different price tag.
#02 Trim The Guestlist
While this may seem completely improbable for you, it is actually not impossible. It might be worth taking the time to seriously consider the strength and closeness of your relationship woth each and every guest prior to inviting everyone you know. Your current budget and future self will thank you.
#03 Go Green
Replace traditional paper invitations with Facebook invites or online invitations (check out Paperless Post, Punchbowl or Evite). Or, literally have a green wedding and do without the floral arrangements! It’s amazing how awesome lush foliage can look as a wedding bouquet or as centrepieces.
#04 Marry In The Off-Season
Choosing a less popular month or date can mean better availability and also more attractive rates (not to mention more vendor options). The same applies to weekday weddings. Saturday is the most popular and therefore the most expensive. A growing trend is to go off peak by getting married on a Friday night or Sunday afternoon. If you are not expected to adhere to cultural taboos, this tip is for you. Just remember to give your guests a heads-up and you’ll shave a good chunk off the cost.
#05 Watch The Clock
Dive straight in to a lunch reception right after your morning ceremony. Not only will you save on an extra catering expense, a wedding brunch or luncheon usually costs less than a dinner banquet. Timing your wedding differently could help you to manage your budget better, not to mention save you lots by cutting down on your alcohol bill.
(See also: 5 Reasons You Should Opt For A Lunch Reception)
#06 Rewards Strategy
Most hotels have their own guest loyalty programme. So if you are planning to have your wedding or banquet at a hotel, try to make the booking during their rewards promotions period (typically once or twice a year). These promotions might offer additional points for every ringgit spent, “buy 10 tables and get 1 free”, etc. Leverage the extra points by converting them into a honeymoon stay in the same hotel chain at a destination of your choice.
#07 Get Creative
Instead of buying decorations and wedding favours, why not have a go at making them yourself? Making your own wedding details can be such a joy and adds a personal touch. Just a word of advice: look at the resources at hand and know your limitations. With the right materials and skills, you can have a one-of-a-kind wedding without breaking the bank.
(See also: Affordable Paper and Materials for the DIY Bride)
#08 Making It Work – Twice
Chances are you are not the first person you know who is getting married. And in many cases, married couples would still have wedding decorations, bridal accessories or even table centrepieces sitting around in their new homes waiting to be repurposed. So why not buy (or borrow) these gently used items from them? After all, every wedding needs to have something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue…
#09 Defy Expectations
You really don’t need to spend money on things just because you are expected to. It’s your wedding after all! Skip the wedding favours, make do without programmes, and keep the bridal party small. Save your money for the things that really matter to you. No one is going to doubt your love for each other just because you don’t have a fancy invitation or a grand wedding reception.