11 ways to avoid a wedding budget blowout

For some couples, the most expensive day of their life will be the one when they tie the knot, with around 35% of newlyweds blowing their wedding budget before they walk down the aisle1.

So if you’re planning for this special day in your life, you’ll need to work out how to finance it–without spending the rest of your married life paying for it.

Here are 11 tips to ease the pressure on the wedding budget:

  1. Talk about money early with your partner and families (if they will be involved). Decide what you will be able to pay for and if your family can help with any expenses. Set a budget and stick to it.
  2. Be prepared. Try to book your wedding venue, reception and honeymoon well in advance to avoid disappointment.
  3. Start saving early. See MoneySmart’s wedding saving and budgeting to find out what costs you can expect to pay. 
  4. Grab a bargain. Search eBay or Gumtree or hunt down end-of- stock bargains, such as DIY wedding stationery. 
  5. Have an out-of-season wedding. Be different! Have a July wedding to cut costs without sacrificing your precious memories. Many venues and suppliers have lower-priced deals during winter – pick a venue with a romantic fireplace.
  6. Be realistic with your guest list. If you haven’t kept in contact with friends in the last 12 months, why do it now? Lay down the law with family, so you don’t end up with tables full of relatives you’ve never even met! 
  7. Explore your network. Call on talented friends who can swap a service for a gift, such as a photographer, a hair stylist or make-up person. Maybe someone knows a band that can play at the reception? But make sure you hear their repertoire of music choices first! 
  8. Cut the ties. Times are changing and so are weddings. It’s ok to shed some traditions. Be practical about whether you need all the trimmings like a videographer, bonbonnieres, and gifts for parents or bridal party if you need to cut costs. 
  9. Be less formal and spend less. For example you could swap a formal sit down dinner for a cocktail party and save on room hire and catering costs or, if the venue allows it, organise the drinks yourself. 
  10. Pay attention to the fine print. Read your suppliers’ contracts, even if they are long and complicated. Don’t get caught out by any extra charges which are sometimes in the fine print. 
  11. Wishing well. If you’re already living together, chances are that you have most of what you need – a wishing well is a polite way of asking for money. You can then use this to pay for the honeymoon or pay off some of the wedding expenses.

Start planning now

If you haven’t already, now might be a good time to review your finances. Make sure you give yourself enough time to save for all the trimmings. You might want to consider setting up a savings plan or use a budget planner calculator to work out how much you will need to save.

Check out our education module to give you some tips on managing your money. Or if you would prefer professional help, call 131 267 so we can help you find a financial adviser to sort out your finances.

Most important of all–remember your wedding is a time of celebration–so don’t stress about money, it will all come together on the day if you just relax and plan ahead.

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© AMP Life Limited. This provides general information and hasn’t taken your circumstances into account. It’s important to consider your particular circumstances before deciding what’s right for you. Although the information is from sources considered reliable, AMP does not guarantee that it is accurate or complete. You should not rely upon it and should seek qualified advice before making any investment decision. Except where liability under any statute cannot be excluded, AMP does not accept any liability (whether under contract, tort or otherwise) for any resulting loss or damage of the reader or any other person.