Don’t Let Wedding Costs get out of Line

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Weddings are unique occasions, marking one of life’s most significant milestones.  As such, extravagant celebrations and over the top events are commonplace, acknowledging this watershed moment for happy couples worldwide.  Unfortunately, wedding spending quickly spirals out of control, when planners are not tuned-in to budgets and frugal spending options.  For some, money is no object, leading to luxury affairs marked by nothing but the best accoutrements. While there is nothing wrong with raising the stakes for a special wedding day, memorable events are also put-forth without breaking the bank.  Successful wedding planning relies on discipline and flexibility, undertaken most effectively when planners have some time to pull all the details together.  Budgets are not universal; nor are the providers putting-on wedding events, so due diligence is required, matching competent providers with cash on hand for wedding celebrations.  Fortunately for brides and grooms poised to take the plunge, countless others have come before them, pulling-off outstanding wedding celebrations within reasonable budgets. Use these tips to follow in their footsteps, tapping proven techniques for planning frugal weddings.

Step Back

Wedding planning starts early for some, even before meeting that special someone, occasionally.  As a result, details about how you see your special day unfolding have already taken root in your wedding planning psyche, leading to potential problems seeing the big picture.  Instead of pouring over minutia during the early stages of planning, it is important for brides and grooms to step-back for a wider view of the entire affair.  Rather than getting caught up in specifics like color schemes, menu items, and personalized wedding vows, start framing your wedding event by looking at bigger questions.  What type of party will you throw, for example?   Sit down dinners, with multiple courses, for instance, have an entirely different set of planning requirements than buffet-type service, which is also a cheaper option in many cases.  Your guest-list factors-in at this point, because each mouth to feed represents another budget entry.  Balancing what you can afford, and who will be invited to your wedding is an essential first step toward wedding success.  For instance, less expensive food might enable you to have more of your friends and family in attendance, but provides a less satisfying meal than keeping numbers low and food-quality high.

Keep it Real

Too often, our desire to create a one-of-a-kind wedding celebration prompts wasteful buys or downright silly spending.  Personalized wedding napkins, matchbooks, and other takeaway baubles for guests are nice touches when you aren’t worried about costs, but they should not be prioritized when resources are limited.  Instead of hiring ice carvers or buying fancy velvet ring pillows, focus your wedding spending g on those things furnishing lasting memories.  High quality professional photography, for example, is money well spent, immortalizing your wedding day in its best light.  Honeymoon spending is the icing on the financial cake, adding one more expense to the cost of getting married.  While exotic vacation destinations are appealing to newly hitched brides and grooms, jetting-off immediately after exchanging vows is not always in the cards for cash-strapped couples.  Instead of overextending at a critical financial time, frugal honeymooners put off travel, until their first anniversary or other time when cash flow supports it.

Couples with high levels of flexibility land the best savings.  Getting married during the off-season, for example, leads to savings on halls, food, and other wedding spending, but it also trims honeymoon costs.  Off-seasons trips are cheaper, including all-inclusive packages well-suited for honeymoon travel. Marry during prime time, however, and expect to pay high rates for honeymoon hospitality.

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