(Closed) Wedding Sticker Price Shock

posted 10 years ago in Money
Post # 3
2373 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2008

Ummm.. YES!!!



  My parents are paying for our wedding, but we are still adding 2000 dollars to that budget out of our pockets.  We are cutting all sorts of corners, I don’t know how people do it…


Post # 4
126 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: March 2009

Originally when Fiance and I started looking at wedding engaged, I was thinking we can certainly have a wedding for about $10K which we thought was doable without putting us in a hole.  WRONG!  When we finally sat down and do some research, food alone cost more than our original budget! Photog was about $5K. Holy cow.  So, we sat down and finally did a more realistic budget.  So, with a better number in mind and a realization that we need to come up with this money (we’re paying for ourselves) I sat Fiance down and planned for an accelerated saving plan, without us having to starve ourselves.  We made sure we look at every option, even if it the idea strayed away from what I thought would be my ideal wedding.  Instead of having an evening reception, we opted for a noon reception.  Instead of having the wedding in the summer when it would be warm, we opted for March because off season time is so much cheaper, even the church was cheaper!  We chose probably the most used wedding color (PINK) because everything is available in pink!  We decided to do everything ourselves to cut cost.  

Post # 5
9 posts
  • Wedding: June 2009

Yes!  Fiance and I are paying for the wedding ourselves.  We are learning that we can’t afford everything but that doesn’t mean we can’t have a ‘dream’ wedding.  The major cost for us is the dinner reception.  Feeding your guests can add up like crazy so if it’s within reason, the biggest savings would be to cut your guest list.  You will have to make some sacrifices (maybe you don’t need $10 letterpressed invites or the Manolo Blahniks) to fit what you think is needed for the wedding (for me, food + photographer = happy stomach and memories).  Because really, everything outside of your officiant, your fiance, and your witness is pretty much extra to in order to get married.  Are there projects (like invites and favors) you could DIY to help save costs?  Maybe you have relatives or close friends who are willing to help in labor or offer their things for you to borrow?  Just a thought.  I also agree with *furelysse* to shop around and do as much research as you can.  Bargains were meant to be hunted.

As for your get rich quick scheme, I’m sorry I can’t offer you more help.  If you find out a way to help pay for the wedding, let me know too!  🙂  I’m not sure of your financial situation/stability but you’re not alone in feeling overwhelmed in how expensive weddings can be.

Post # 6
329 posts
Helper bee
  • V
  • 10 years ago

1. Reduce the guest list…instead of the 200 ppl you have in mind ..how about 50 or 75 (I don’t really know how many ppl you have in mind, this is just an example)

2. Budget yourselves. Don’t starve but cut costs on your daily living. 1 pack of cigarrettes a week instead of 3. Twelve cans of beer instead of 24. No dining out, etc.

3. DON’T use your creditcards unless you can pay the balance right away. Debt and the pressure that comes with it are not the best way to start a marriage.

4. Enlist friends with talents. Baker, graphic designer, crafty, etc.

5. Save money on invitations by buying already made kits (printable invites). Personalize it by adding a different color ribbon or a scrapbooking sticker or by using an edge cutting thingy. 

6. get a second job.

Unfortunately, I don’t know any get rich quick schemes.

 P.S. a good photog doesn’t have to be 5k! 

Post # 7
1246 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2009

I feel like I’m trying to be frugal on a lot of things, but i’ve been surprised by some stuff that I should’ve anticipated and I feel really stupid because of it – stuff like my venue not including dishes or linens, or the extra tax on top of initlal costs, or tipping. All of that is adding $5-$6k to my original total, which has blown the original budget. So yeah, I feel you on the sticker shock. More accurately, my sentiment is something along the lines of, "Holy crap."

Post # 8
92 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

My fiance and I will be getting some assistance from my family, but still aim to keep things reasonable. We have no desire to either go into debt or help others go into debt for one day. With that said, having a beautiful wedding is important for us. Most girls get a ring and go dress shopping, I got a ring and started crunching numbers. I am adamant that our budget stay reasonable from the beginning and on target throughout the process. Here is how we’ve done it so far…

(1) Prioritize! We determined early on that location, date, and photography were our top 3 must-haves. He is a teacher so his taking time off during the school year for the wedding was not possible so we had to stick with a summer wedding.

(2) Catalog less important items to determine where to cut costs. For us they included the dress (I will bargain shop like crazy!), flowers (bulk via samsclub dot com is the way to go for me!), favors, cake (cupcakes galore that my family will bake), limos/transportation (our venues are very close together), videography (none for us), and professional services (see below – DIY.)

(3) DIY! I will be doing a LOT. Save-the-dates, invitations, wedding website, favors, programs, centerpieces, bouquets, guest book, out of town bags. Etc. etc. I bet the list will continue to expand.

(4) Guest list. I have a huge family! No one has ever had a wedding of under 300 guests. We are inviting no more than 180 – 190 and hoping to settle somewhere in the 150 – 175 range after RSVPs.

(5) Booking early. Some vendors (our photographer included) let us book 2008 rates if we booked our 2009 wedding by a certain date.

It can be overwhelming, but the sooner you start to sift through what you need versus what you want and what you can live without, the easier it will be to zone in on a number. Good luck! 

Post # 9
9 posts

You can always have a brunch, get married on a Friday or Sunday.  There was one DIY wedding posted on style me pretty where the bride spent less than $20K total that was incredible.  I see you are in DC and there are a lot of options but many of them are expensive.

Post # 10
375 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2018

A lot of great ideas have already been posted, but I went to a lovely Sunday afternoon wedding this past weekend. By having an "off" day like a Friday or Sunday (which are still totally feasible for guests), an afternoon/lunch reception and an "off" season wedding (October-March, which have gorgeous aspects) you can save quite a bit. Also, we were engaged in 2007 and will be married in 2009. That extra year will ensure that I can have my "dream" wedding but have it all paid for by the big day. I was able to book many vendors in 2007 and pay the prices for that year. I estimate I have saved $5k that way (our venue, photog and string trio all increased in price dramatically). Finally, I have been paying for things as I go, which has helped to reduce the sticker shock. Museweddings.com is a great budget tracking tool. Good luck!

Post # 11
88 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: March 2009

Believe it or not, we are having a desintation wedding to "cut" costs. If we were to wed in PA (where we live, and where all our family is at) we would easily have 140-200 guests. So we decided to get married in Hawaii (where I grew up) instead.
This allows us to have a small wedding. 10-20 peeps.
We’re getting married on a Thursday, which saves us money.
Even the photographers were better, but cheaper in Hawaii.
Instead of a traditional reception, we’re just taking everyone to dinner. We also cut out the wedding party, it’ll be just the groom and I at the alter.
I’m DIYing my STD’s and invites.
Got my dress off of Ebay.
Shop around for deals, don’t impulse buy.

Our budget is $8,000-$10,000, although I’d rather be closer to the $8,000, that includes our condo and plane tickets to Hawaii from the East Coast. My family offered to pay for the "reception" dinner.

I’m seriously thinking about getting a part-time job also. To help with costs.

Post # 12
222 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2009

I swear I am in the wrong industry. They wedding industry is where all the money is. It is CRAZY! Right now, it is looking like we are going to elope. We just can’t justify the prices. Who knows… 🙂

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