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Want to save money on your wedding? You’re in luck: today we’re sharing twenty-four ways to save money on your wedding with some tips on what you can skip and where you can save. Some ways to do so include trimming your guest list, picking items that are multi-purpose, and becoming stealthy with online deals. After all, a wedding is way less stressful when you can stay on budget… and we’re here to help you keep your sanity! Be sure to pin this one, loves: it’s chock-full of wonderful money saving tips. Enjoy!
How to Save Money on Your Wedding
First and foremost, the easiest way to save money on your wedding is by cutting the guest list. It’s tough, but it’s the most efficient way to stay on budget.
1. Cut the guest list.
Be ruthless with your guest list and you’ll see the savings add up. It’s tough to do, but if you’re really on a budget it’s the easiest way to set a specific budget. Here’s how to cut the guest list without the guilt.
2. Get married in the off-season.
Many places will offer a discounted rate on the “off-season” (winter or early spring).
3. Choose a non-traditional venue.
Think outside the box for your venue and you might save a bundle. For instance, a woodland wedding, barn wedding, or backyard wedding might cost significantly less than a larger, sought-after venue. Parks are another great place to get married (but check with the park about permits, cost, etc. first).
4. Plan a destination wedding.
It may sound too good to be true, but a destination wedding can save you money by combining your ceremony, reception site, and honeymoon into one location. Many places will offer deep discount rates, too, by combining all of the above. Most destination weddings have a very small guest list (as less guests will be willing to travel), which can be positive (less cost) but also negative (less guests able to attend). Weigh the pros and cons first to see if a destination wedding is right for you.
5. Get expert advice.
Hire a wedding planner. He or she can sometimes get great deals on services, venues, and/or help you create your dream wedding within your budget.
6. Make a free wedding website.
A wedding website can save you money on additional paper goods, like RSVP cards, maps, and more. Try eWedding.com as one resource that seems really easy to use, as well as Wix.com, another free resource.
7. Skip some paper goods.
Paper goods are beautiful touches, and we recommend using any that you need. However, if there’s something you can live without (a program, menu, or place card, just to name a few), skip them and save a little money along the way. Be sure to read “Do I really need place cards AND escort cards?” as well as “Are wedding programs required?” before you shop.
8. Scope out the bargains.
Get familiar with estate sales (try EstateSales.net as one resource) and thrift shops in your area. If you’re on the lookout for decor, you can find anything you need at next to nothing. Mason jars, candles, candle holders, vintage tea cups, saucers, vases, and costume jewelry are just a few of the things you’ll find (and you’ll save a bundle!) Also look for many of your wedding attire or accessories online. When you buy direct from a handmade artist, you can sometimes score an awesome price (and the quality will be better than most stores!) For instance, you can shop inexpensive (yet gorgeous) wedding dresses on Etsy, surprisingly chic and affordable shoes (like these), cute bridesmaid gifts, affordable bridesmaid dresses they’ll actually wear again, the most incredible groomsmen gifts we’ve ever seen, the best wedding invitations, just to name a few. And don’t forget about scoping out the web for a beautiful bouquet that will last forever (and save you some money). For hair and makeup, score discounts on vouchers (try this as one resource). I always check it first.
9. Pick blooms that are available year-round (or are in season).
You’ll save a bundle on blooms that are more readily-available for florists in your area, like roses, lilies, hydrangeas, etc. Try BloomsByTheBox.com as one resource.
10. Swap bridesmaid bouquets for an alternative.
Bridesmaids can carry lanterns, clutch purses (which double as their gift!), or wear corsages instead.
11. Save your bridesmaids some moolah.
Be nice to your bridesmaids and let them save a little money, too. Pick a bridesmaid dress that isn’t too expensive, one that they can wear again (like any of these). Forgo expensive fancy heels for flats and opt for something like this instead — or, have them wear a shoe or heel they already own.
12. Select non-floral centerpieces.
Flowers are costly! Beautiful, yes, but if you can forgo a few blooms you’ll save a few bucks. Instead, consider non-floral centerpiece ideas like manzanita trees, birch bark decor, and faux greenery (like succulents) are just a few ways you can cut costs while still having beautiful decor. Or choose an alternative wedding bouquet instead and have the ability to keep it forever! That’s money well-spent, we say!
13. Pick decor that does double-duty.
We love when wedding accessories serve multiple purposes. For instance, succulents + potted plants are a chic place card, table decor, AND take-home favor in one! Another? Mason jar drinking glasses which are escort cards, drinking glasses, and favors in one! If you find ways to incorporate more than one aspect of your wedding into an item, you’ll save yourself time, money, and energy. (See also: Wine Table Number and The Thank You Menu.)
If there are certain things you’re okay with borrowing, do it. For instance, you can borrow a gorgeous pair of earrings or a sparkly handbag for the night of the wedding. And, it will tie into your ‘something borrowed’ too, so it counts as two awesome task-savers.
15. Forgo the champagne toast.
Not everyone will drink it, so reserve the bubbly just for you and the groom (and wedding party, if you’d like).
16. Buy wholesale flowers.
Instead of expensive boutique prices, order wholesale wedding flowers in bulk. Then, learn how to put together your own bouquets or ask a florally-skilled friend to help.
17. Learn to Do It Yourself (DIY).
Sometimes, you can cut costs by doing it yourself. For instance, there are all kinds of crafting classes you can take online at your own pace (and on your own schedule) to help with your wedding. For instance, you an make your own DIY Birch Mason Jar Candles, DIY Wedding Favors, a unique seating chart, hot cocoa favors, “ring for a kiss” cowbell, wine bottle candles, groomsman gift box, and more. Check out these 8 DIY wedding ideas and 30 Best DIY Wedding Projects for additional inspiration. With any of these, you’ll also learn a skill you can use long after the wedding.
18. Let guests help themselves at the bar.
When you buy your own booze, you can decide how much to buy and how much to spend. Plus, buying in bulk on your own can sometimes cost significantly less than a bartender + booze at a venue. See this post on how much alcohol to buy and How to Stock the Bar at a Wedding for helpful tips. You can also get inspired with your own DIY Beer Bar, a really cool idea we love.
19. Save on transportation.
For limo rental, always look for a deal before you book. You can save on limo service (try Limos.com as one resource). Or, do what I did and rent a limousine for the first portion (ceremony to reception) and a town car for the second half (after the reception to drive us home). Another way to save is to see if your hotel offers shuttle services (many do – just ask).
20. The Sheet Cake
One of my favorite wedding money savers: the secret sheet cake. Order a cake that is two or three-tiered for cutting the cake; hide sheet cake in the kitchen to be cut and served to guests. No one ever notices and, hey, cake is cake.
21. Find local discounts + deals.
You can get discounts on certain services like hair salons or makeup services for your wedding thanks to places like Groupon, one resource worth checking out.
22. Get discounts on hotels and accommodations.
For your honeymoon, start shopping early for deals and discounts. Consider hiring a travel agent to get you the best price possible on your trip. Some places like will offer discounts on multiple night stays. I’ve used Hotels.com before and you get a free room after booking (I think it’s five) rooms through them. Some places also have last minute dealsso keep an eye out for those, too. And, if you have a credit card that offers airline miles, now’s the time to save them up!
23. Suits for the groomsmen.
The groomsmen can wear suits instead of tuxedos for a little cost savings. They’ll look just as dapper. (Wondering where to shop? Dessy Group always has suits and tuxedos that are on trend plus expanded suit combinations for destination weddings.)
24. Add it to your registry.
With new online registries readily available, you can register for nearly anything under the sun. Case in point? You can register for some of your wedding decorations or accessories online and use them for your big day (try Amazonas one resource). You can also add gift cards to your registry which means you can use them for anything you need — now or later.
Now that you’ve read some of our favorite tips to save money on your wedding, what would you add to the list? Tell us with a comment below! Questions + comments also welcome, as always.
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Good ideas. My husband and I spent $2,500.00 TOTAL on our wedding and recouped over half of that by selling many items afterwards. Yes, I am a crafter, but it still was possible. And we have a wonderful wedding!
Keep you wedding real and simple and you can save lots of money. Showoff’s are most expensive and it’s important that before you begin with all your plannings, to make a list of your top priorities.
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