Four Weddings Costs? For real???

posted 2 years ago in 40 Something
Post # 2
Member
2206 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012 - Southern California

Location location location 😉

Post # 3
Member
2052 posts
Buzzing bee

And here I was the opposite, thinking the prices on that show were sometimes rather outrageous

Post # 4
Member
720 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

ErininMD:  I think it honestly depends on a few different things. 1- Location of wedding…..if you are in a small town you’ll spend a lot less than say NYC. 2- Depends what you choose to spend your money on. Some people splurge on things such as decor, cake, catering, linens etc. The wedding industry is a great way to make money because brides will pay for it if they need it. Photography is crazy when it comes to pricing but again that all depends on experience/what you get in your package etc etc. 

I just had my wedding in September and over all cost was between $25-30K give or take for 80-90 people. That included everything though – food, alcohol, venue/hall rentals, DJ, photography, l, dress, tux, rings, decor, glow sticks, making my own card box, picture frames, candy bar, cake and cake topper, silk flowers, candles/centrepieces, hotel suite for 2 nights…..the list can go on forever. My venue had a lot included that we didn’t have to rent separately so it saved us money so I’m sure we woulda hit about $30-35K if it weren’t included. We purchased small things along the way and I didn’t keep track of the small things that came outta pocket so thats why I guessed $25-30K. So am I shocked when they say how much weddings cost on 4 weddings? Not always just because some areas are cheaper than others. I live in Canada and when I read about some of the things that need to be rented here on the bee (based on the majority of the bees saying they are from the US) compared to how we rent things in my area, it doesn’t surprise me that things add up quickly!!

Post # 5
Member
7243 posts
Busy Beekeeper

ErininMD:  the average wedding costs more than that where I am and the guest list usually tops out at 100 people. It definitely depends on where you are having your wedding.

Post # 7
Member
1878 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2013 - Valparaiso, IN

My wedding had 150 guests but we spent a little under 5k.

Post # 8
Member
353 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2015 - The Fairmont, SF

ErininMD:  Stumbled across this thread through the main board page… I love and hate Four Weddings but I’ve always thought that the budgets on the show vary so much within an episode that it’s hard to get any real idea of what the region’s “average” is. There are also so many variables that may help contestants have really lavish weddings without breaking the bank; I remember one bride had her wedding at her parents’ vineyard for a fraction of what it would’ve normally cost at a comparable location.

Also, I laughed at this: “I think some of the younger Brides will bankrupt their parents and their parents won’t say no.  I think when you get over 40 your a little more sensible”

I’ll be honest with you, as a young bride (22) I understand why people think like this, even though it’s really quite offensive. FWIW, my FI and I have a “big budget” (we’re paying for 90% of the wedding) and despite him being 38, almost all of the lavish spending ideas – venue, ring budget, honeymoon budget, etc. – have come from him. Age and sensibility are not the same thing. 😛

Post # 9
Member
1668 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

ErininMD: as others have said…location is the key. we got married outside a small town in the upstate of SC at a beautiful lodge at a state park, around 130 people, and with food, booze, decor, rings, outfits, flowers, the whole thing, we hit around $11-12K. it just depends on where you are, what options you have, who you know, and what corners you’re willing to cut to stay within a reasonable budget! we live in charlotte, NC and i guarantee we’d have been closer to $25-30K AT LEAST if we’d gotten married where we live… 

Post # 10
Hostess
9837 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: May 2014

ErininMD:  They did a couple of seasons in Canada and most of those weddings were in my area (same with Rich Bride Poor Bride) and I have inquired at some of the venues featured on the show – some of the prices made total sense, others not so much.  More often the prices the show quoted seemed lower than the prices I was getting.  I figure anyone can spend 50k on a wedding if they want to, it’s much harder to do it on a buget.

Post # 11
Member
812 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: February 2013 - Mansion House at the MD Zoo

ErininMD:  I live in Baltimore and spent ~$20-25k on a 120 guest wedding, so I think that’s in line. It’s all about location and what you want and are willing to do. And I did my own flowers, decorations, didn’t hire a coordinator, am not counting rings, rehearsal dinner, or honeymoon. The WIC is not budget-friendly. 🙂

Also I’m with liameowchelle:  the comment about bankrupting parents was a bit offensive. We paid for about 50% of our wedding costs (which my parents don’t know, they think they covered nearly all) at ages 29 and 30. We wanted a capital-W Wedding since we knew we’re not having kids, already owned a home, stuff like that. It was kind of our last hurrah and we made a concious decision to save and spend a bunch of money on it. 🙂 Anyway, people of all ages are equally able and unable to manage a budget, it’s all about how you view money and what you value.

Post # 12
Member
274 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

I also love Four Weddings!  I have usually thought the prices sounded high on that show, but I think the costs of weddings ALWAYS sound high to me.  We set out planning to spend less than $10,000 and including the rings (not including honeymoon) we spent just under $12 000.  I had my wedding in a small town (not one guest was from the town, so everyone had to drive 1.5 hours to get there).  The city I’m from is very expensive (in Canada) so I made the choice to go outside the city. No one complained about the distance, and many guests chose to drive home that night so I didn’t burden them with forcing them to stay in a hotel. 

I think every choice you make when planning a wedding affects cost.  We chose the venue 30% on it’s look and 70% on it’s price, but it was still beautiful.  I DIY’ed a lot.  Skipped the DJ.  Only invited 50 of our nearest and dearest. Went middle of the line with the photographer (who still did a fantastic job!).  I did minimal flowers for less than $500.  The venue made our cake for $250.

liameowchelle:  I agree with you about age!  We paid for our wedding 100% (we got pretty generous monetary gifts from our parents, but we didn’t recieve anything before wedding day besides my my mom pitching in half my dress cost (aka $600)).  I am 25 and my husband is 32.

Budget weddings are possible if you’re willing to make some sacrifices, and in no way did I feel like we “cheaped out” on anything that really mattered. And for what it’s worth, we found a wonderful venue I loved that we did not book because we had to rent a tent, tables, chairs, linens, dishes, etc etc.  This, like you said, adds about $4000 onto the price of the wedding.  We had to find one that would include all of that stuff to stay on budget.  That other venue rarely crosses my mind, and the place we got married in couldn’t have been more perfect.

I hope this helps shed some light on possible reasons why the cost of some weddings seems so low to you.

  • This reply was modified 1 year, 10 months ago by  MissKayDee.
Post # 13
Member
12796 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

It’s like house hunters and homes findings for only 200k.

Post # 14
Member
745 posts
Busy bee

I think anyone is able to have a wedding for much cheaper than 25k, it’s all about prioritizing.

I’m in my mid 20s and FI and I are paying for our full wedding (my mom bought my dress, which was a lovely gift, but I stuck to my original thrifty dress budget, since I didn’t want her to spend more than what I had thought was reasonable). We’ll actually be spending more on the honeymoon than the wedding, because we decided that’s what we wanted to go all out for.

When you’re being cost concious, it’s not that hard to save money. Decide what is important to you, and what isn’t. 

In terms of Four Weddings, I agree that budgets are all over the map. I’ve seen gorgeous small weddings for 5 or 6 K, and I’ve seen huge affairs for over 100K. Interestingly enough, the biggest budgets aren’t always the winners. As a side note, I never understood why people would spend that much on their wedding and compete for a honeymoon instead of cutting back and paying for their own honeymoon. 

Post # 15
Member
3005 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

ErininMD:  $25k for 150 people actually sounds incredibly reasonable where I live. I’m looking at close to $20k for 100 people. It kind of sucks, especially since I didn’t think I was doing anything fancy. However, there were things that were nonnegotiable for me: DJ, photobooth, photographer, and videographer. I didn’t want to skimp on any of those items. The location bumps up the price a bit more. I admire brides who are able to really get their weddings in under $10k, but for me, that would have been a bare bones wedding devoid of many things FI and I found important. Also, I think it should be noted that money is always relative. You think $25k is an unholy amount for a wedding and for others, not so much. Saying young brides are out to bankrupt their parents seems a bit silly. 

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