It’s meant to be one of the happiest days of your life, but with the average Australian wedding costing couples upwards of $35,000 (according to ASIC) many marriages start off with debt hanging overhead.
If you or your partner have champagne tastes on a beer budget there are many ways you can cut down costs on the big day and still have a dream wedding.
Choose your ‘big ticket’ items first
At the beginning of the planning process it’s important you talk to your partner about which ‘big ticket’ items you’re willing to take the budget version of and which you aren’t.
Maybe you’ve always dreamt of a live band as opposed to a great Spotify playlist, or you’d rather fork out for an amazing photographer instead of a limousine. Whatever you choose, try to make sure you and your partner are on the same page, or can compromise, for the sake of your budget.
Make a strict budget
Speaking of budgets, it’s crucial that you make a strict one and stick to it. Pinterest has a lot of great resources for ready-made budgets over various timelines prepared by wedding experts.
Set up a high-interest savings account
According to ASIC’s MoneySmart website, 82 per cent of Aussies used their savings to pay for their big day, so why not help those savings to grow without risky investment?
By setting up a high-interest savings account specifically for your wedding you can take advantage of higher than average interest rates. High-interest savings accounts traditionally limit the number of withdrawals you can make or require minimum monthly deposits, making them a helpful wedding savings tool.
Move back in with your parents
While it’s not the most ideal living situation, if you’re willing to put up with your family or the in-laws for a few months, you could help save a few extra thousand dollars for the wedding of your dreams.
Sell your car
If public transport is decent in your area, selling your car could be a viable option for you to make a few extra thousand dollars (and cut down on transport costs) while you plan your wedding.
Book in off season or not a Saturday
It goes without saying that Saturdays in Spring are the most sought-after wedding dates for couples. This also means venues can charge through the nose during ‘wedding season’. Cut down on costs by having your wedding in the off season (Autumn to Winter) or on a Sunday.
Consider a competitive wedding loan
According to ASIC’s MoneySmart website, 60 per cent of Aussies take out a loan to pay for their wedding. If you’re the type of person who is responsible at paying bills on time, taking out a competitive wedding loan is another option to consider.
Don’t tell them it’s for a wedding
As you’ll quickly learn while planning, the second the word “wedding” appears the price seems to double! Another trick that’s worth a try (if you’re not opposed to little white lies) is to not tell the vendor that what you’re requesting is for a wedding. While you may not get away with it for the dress, it’s worth a try for expenses such as catering or transportation.
DIY invitations/website invitations
If letter-pressed, gold leaf covered invitations didn’t quite make your ‘big ticket expenses’ list, why not make your own? For the crafty types out there, DIY invitations can be a sweet, personal touch for those receiving them.
You can also make a website invitation through platforms such as The Knot. These are a popular alternative to traditional snail-mail invites, and can be completely personalised to suit your style.
Handy alcohol hacks
Racking up a huge bar tab is one of many ways people can blow their wedding budgets. However, there are a couple of ways you can cut down the cost of cocktail hour.
Some venues will let you bring your own bottles of spirits, so keep an eye out for specials and discounts on bulk purchases at liquor stores. Another way to save is by only serving beer and wine on tab, or just serving a signature drink, that way people can still celebrate for free or pay themselves if they want another type of drink.