How much did/will your South Asian wedding cost?

posted 4 years ago in South Asian
Post # 2
Member
7 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: October 2015

Hey there. I live in SF Bay area and our wedding is nowhere near $250,000 ๐Ÿ™‚ Most of the cost is for the venue- mostly the per person charge which doesnt even include alcohol. We found an affordable country club which took a lot of research to find and we are doing the sangeet at a community center which is very affordable. We are spending the normal amount on other things but decor is the other area where you can save money. Some of the quotes I have got are like $10k for both days. I’m going to India so I plan on buying some stuff there. Remember- there’s always choices, you don’t have to go for the “usual” vendors. Think outside the box. Another thing we are doing (and I see getting more popular these days) is having the ceremony around 3pm so we don’t have to have two seperate meals. Overall I think our wedding maybe around 75K (including clothes/jewellery etc) or lesser for 200 people for sangeet, wedding and reception. Hope this helps! Remember- marriage over wedding ๐Ÿ™‚

Post # 3
Member
123 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

poeticallygreen:  technically not South Asian but then again I’m bad at geography lol afghan bride here who can relate to your post ! 

We have the henna night before the wedding 

the actual wedding 

and one after party as well 

The wedding itself is costing30 k for 250 guests no alcohol buffet style. 

Henna night – 4.5 k including outfits 

after party 4 k 

it all depebds on vendors we saved a lot but going with no name vendors who work from home like our florist and decor guy and cake baker they have great work but charge much less than elite vendors! 

Post # 4
Member
123 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

poeticallygreen:  I might add my henna night is being decorated by my mom and sisters 

we bought a lot of fabric and decor items wholesale from downtown LA which saved us like 800-1 k for simple mehndi night decor. 

all in all I think it’s costing us 250-300 to do it ourselves

Post # 6
Member
1365 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2018 - Banquet Hall/Conference Center

Hi! I just wanted to revive this thread.

poeticallygreen :  How much did your wedding ending up costing? What are some things you learned? We are considering a 300 person South Asian hindu wedding in late summer/early Fall 2018 in the Chicago area and flabbergasted by the price because my SO might start a PhD program next year and I’m not exactly in a high-paying industry. Any tips for keeping it under $75K keeping in mind the “extra” costs that come with having a desi wedding (ex: paying for hotel and transportation for relatives from India, hosting them for a couple weeks before or after, etc.)?

Some traditions we are considering cutting or amending:

  • Sangeet
  • Baraat
  • Alcohol (more due to religious/cultural reasons)
  • Having mehndhi and engagement ceremony low key at home instead of in a hall
  • Getting family’s clothing and invitations made in India (maybe. not a fan of this one)
  • Off-season dates for wedding or honeymoon (fall)
Post # 7
Member
1365 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2018 - Banquet Hall/Conference Center

Bump!

Post # 8
Member
79 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: July 2017

My 4 day even is costing $45 K with about 300 people attending. Alcohol open bar buffet style food. 

Post # 9
Member
1365 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2018 - Banquet Hall/Conference Center

Sunlover87 :  Wow really?! That’s amazing. May I ask when and where is your wedding? (I assume to get that cost you must be in a more rural state and/or on a weekday or off-season?)

Post # 10
Member
2 posts
Wannabee
  • Wedding: August 2018

I’m planning a fusion American/Indian wedding in NYC for August 2018. Our budget is right around 30k for 75โ€“90 people. Wedding & reception are on the same day, and then we’ll have a super simple rehearsal brunch/henna party the morning before.

Post # 11
Member
249 posts
Helper bee

30K is really encouraging to hear!! We are still in the pre-planning phase of deciding on a budget and guest list and it’s stressful to think about the cost. Your wedding sounds lovely ๐Ÿ™‚

Post # 12
Member
365 posts
Helper bee

I’m not Indian, but my Fiance is.  Our events in LA will cost ~65k total for clothes, shoes, food, decor, stage, dj, photog, my wardrobe (for wedding events & “standard outfits”), family gifts (including some clothing), invitations & postage (no alcohol, no baraat, excluding jewelry)

  • engagement for 100p – in banquet hall, only invites, food, centerpieces, favors, & clothing 
  • nikkah (religious marriage ceremony) for 20-30p – at home, half home-cooked, some decor
  • manja (like mayun or haldi) for 60-80p – at home, half home-cooked
  • mehndi (henna party) for 180p (15-20 of those are kids) – at banquet hall; only food, decor, dj, favors, clothing
  • wedding/reception/walima for ~280p (20-30 of those are kids) – at a venue 
Post # 13
Member
1365 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2018 - Banquet Hall/Conference Center

YouBeBoyAnd :  Thanks for sharing! That sounds doable if it includes stuff like clothes and stationary. My family and I can now breathe a huge sigh of relief haha. By chance would it be possible to attach costs to your break down bullet points?

Post # 14
Member
365 posts
Helper bee

akshali2000 :  sorry- no time to do that right now, but maybe later.  I can give an update for wedding costs though.  Stuff has gone up a bit.  Not including clothes, hair, rings, or invitations/paper, it’s going to cost $49,000 for venue, food, rentals, lighting, cake, decor, florals, dj, and all (probably $5k of that could be avoided, but his parents want it/think it’s necessary).

The biggest savings are in having 50-100 fewer guests (since I’m not Indian), canceling events (we aren’t doign any baraat & no drummers or special entrances); having as many events as possible at home and low-key/smaller (our engagement, nikkah, and manja/mayun/haldi); having no alcohol (that maybe saved at least $10k); keeping clothes modest (none of mine was over $800 and his stuff is simple & altered off the rack, but don’t tell his parents that part); we didn’t include anybody’s flight costs in the expenses (and aren’t covering any that I know of).

Our clothes were all made in india/pakistan (is there any choice?) – we bought some off the rack in the US just so we could get discount and not have any worry/questions about what would arrive or when it would arrive (but it all came from over there).

Post # 15
Member
1365 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2018 - Banquet Hall/Conference Center

YouBeBoyAnd :  Thanks! All the best for your wedding :)!

My family and I are wedding planning right now and it basically from our research meeting 5-10 venues it seems like receptions are the bulk of the cost (about $30K for a non-alcoholic, 250-300 people reception in suburban Chicago). Ways to save money:

  • Cut alcohol (doing anyway for religious/cultural purposes) OR cut guests. You may not be able to cut both if you want to meet the food and beverage minimum.
  • Cut events like sangeet and baraat
  • Buy bride’s clothes in the US, buy everyone else’s clothes abroad where it’s cheaper (India/Pakistan)
  • Don’t have a bridal party  (sometimes desi bridesmaids and groomsmen expect their outfits to be paid for by the bride and groom, unlike traditional American weddings where each person in the party pays for their own dress)
  • Limit everyone but the bride and groom to only one outfit change from ceremony to reception. This includes bridal party, immediate family, and guests
  • Severely limit whose hotel rooms you pay for to family with financial or health issues, and folks coming from abroad
  • If you do have ancillary events, negotiate a discounted rate with your same venue
  • Biggest thing: have your wedding and reception on a Sunday or Friday. Can save a LOT.
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