Spring and summer are prime wedding seasons, and whether you’re getting married or attending a wedding it can take a big (or huuugggee) bite out of your budget. There are a ton of ways to save on both attending a wedding and your own nuptials, and I’ll break them down below.
I have some experience in this department since we got married in 2001 for under $1,000 (including rings, the license, the venue, clothing, etc.). In addition, I’ve attended weddings and learned (the hard way unfortunately) as both a bridesmaid and attendee that a simple RSVP ‘yes’ can mean spending a small fortune if you aren’t conscientious of your budget all along the way.
Pay For Your Wedding
Whether it comes out of your bank account or not, there is a temptation to go all out for the wedding. We’ve addressed before why you should focus on financial issues before the wedding including 50 questions to ask before marriage, but even if you’re on the same page financially you may end up going overboard on your big day just because it’s so common.
According to The Knot’s 2014 Real Weddings Survey, the average cost of a wedding is now $31,213. $31k. Thirty-One Thousand. That’s a lot of dough. It’s a hefty down payment on your first house, it’s grad school money, it could sit in your retirement account and grow and grow for years to come and be an awesome nest egg.
To help keep your budget in check, Discover shares some tips with us:
- Get on the same page: You may have a vision of the perfect wedding in your head, but make sure it matches up with your partner’s. Have several conversations about what is important to you. Is it the location? Is it having friends and family from all over be in one place? Is it the food? Whatever is most important to you needs to be clear. If you have trouble figuring it out, bringing in a professional wedding planner might be a good option. They’re pros at getting to the bottom of exactly what is important, and can help you stick to your budget, too.
- Prepare a budget: According to The Knot, more than 45% of couples go over their wedding budget. To help couples develop their budget, they should utilize the many online resources, such as budget calculators and vendor estimates, to get a general idea of what their wedding is going to cost. It’s important to have a budget in place early on so you can work with vendors to create the look and feel of your special day within your budget.
- Take out a personal loan: A personal loan is a great option for covering the cost of a wedding because you can borrow a large amount of money at a relatively low, fixed interest rate to pay the money back. Discover Personal Loans let you borrow up to $30,000 with a flexible repayment timeline, no closing fee or prepayment penalty and a fixed interest rate. This flexibility will give couples peace of mind, and as unexpected expenses are sure to pop up, it’s important to have easy access to extra cash. Just make sure you have the cash to pay it off all saved up.
Pay For A Wedding You’re Attending
We all want to support friends, family, and loved ones when they have their big day, but it’s not a cheap endeavor. From destination weddings to expensive hotels, you may end up spending four figures pretty easily on every wedding you attend. But instead of breaking your budget and going into debt to support loved ones here are some ways you can save some dough.
- Be honest: The best policy when it comes to these situations is to be honest with your loved ones. It will help you explain the choices you have to make financially, and you can find other ways to celebrate the happy union together.
- Bunk up: I know it may seem like you’re living in a dorm room again, but sometimes the best way to attend a wedding, especially in your 20s, is to travel with a group. Besides, you won’t be spending a ton of time in the room anyway.
- Scrimp when you can: If skipping the bachelorette party means going to the wedding, do that. If sending the wedding gift later means you can attend that’s okay according to etiquette experts. Reusing that dress? Do it.
- Skip it: Sadly, sometimes it’s just not in the budget to attend a wedding in which case you should simply RSVP ‘no’ and send a personal note (preferably a letter) to the couple. You might also consider getting them a gift from their registry even if you can’t attend.
Wedding season can be an expensive season of your life, especially if all your friends and family start getting married at once, so be mindful of that when you’re saving and budgeting.
Most importantly, don’t compromise your own financial security to be there for friends and family-no one who loves you would want you to do that.
Now go get your dancing shoes and your budget ready.
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post on behalf of Discover.