How to save for your wedding

How to save for your wedding

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. 

  1. 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.  

  1. 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. 

  1. 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. 

  1. 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. 

  1. 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. 

  1. 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. 

  1. 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. 

By utilising comparison site such as RateCity, you can choose from a range of wedding loans with a number of features, such as redraw facilities and the ability to make extra repayments. 

  1. 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. 

  1. 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. 

  1. 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. 

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Learn more about savings accounts

How to make money with a savings account?

Savings accounts make you money by earning interest on your savings. The more money you deposit, the longer you leave it in the account, and the higher the account’s interest rate, the more interest you’ll be paid by the bank or financial institution, and the more your wealth will grow.

To make sure your savings account makes money and doesn’t lose money, it’s important to maintain a large enough minimum balance that the annual interest earned exceeds any annual fees charged on the account.

How much money should I have in my savings account?

A good rule of thumb when working out a minimum balance for your savings account is to make sure that you’ll earn more in annual interest on your savings than what you’ll be charged in annual fees.

If you’re saving with a specific goal in mind, prepare a budget so the interest you earn on your deposits will help you efficiently reach this goal. Online financial calculators may be helpful here.

Can you set up direct debits from a savings account?

It’s not usually possible to set up a direct debit from your savings account to cover ongoing expenses or bills, as savings accounts are structured around growing your wealth by earning interest on regular deposits, and discouraging withdrawals.

Some transaction accounts allow you to set up direct debits and also earn interest, though you may not enjoy as much flexibility as a dedicated transaction account, or get as high an interest rate as a dedicated savings account.

How does interest work on savings accounts?

The type of interest savings accounts accrues is called compound interest. Compound interest is interest paid on the initial deposit amount, as well as the accumulated interest on money you have. This is different from simple interest where interest is paid at the end of a specified term. Compound interest allows you to earn interest on interest at a higher frequency. 

Example: John deposits $10,000 into a savings account with an interest rate of 5 per cent that he leaves untouched for 10 years. At the end of the first year he will have $10,512 in savings. After ten years, he will have saved $16,470.

Can you direct deposit to a savings account?

Yes. You can make one off payments or set up regular direct deposits into a savings account. This can be organised easily through online banking or by making deposits in a branch. Talk to your lender to find out the easiest way for you to set up direct deposits.

What is a savings account?

A savings account is a type of bank account in which you earn interest on the money you deposit. This makes it one of the easiest and safest investment tools.

How can I get a $4000 loan approved?

While personal loans and medium amount loans don’t offer guaranteed approval, there are steps you can take to help increase the likelihood of your application being approved, including:

  • Fulfilling the eligibility criteria (providing ID, proof of residency, proof of income etc.)
  • Checking your credit history (you can order one free copy of your credit file per year, and make sure that there aren’t any errors that may be bringing down your credit score)
  • Comparing carefully before applying (making multiple loan applications can mean having your credit checked multiple times, which can look bad to some lenders and reduce your chances of being approved by them)

What is a good interest rate for a savings account?

A good rule of thumb to keep in mind with savings accounts is to look for a rate that is higher than the CPI inflation rate. This number is constantly changing, so check the Reserve Bank of Australia’s page. If you aren’t earning interest above this then the value of your money will go backwards over time.

How do I open a savings account?

Opening a savings account is a relatively simple process. If you’ve found an account with a suitable interest rate, you’ll just need to get in contact with your chosen lender via a branch, phone call or hop online to begin the process. 

You may be required to provide:

  • Personal details, including identification (driver’s license, passport etc.)
  • Tax file number
  • Employment details

Can I overdraft my savings account?

A lot of savings accounts won’t let you overdraw. Some will allow this feature but you’ll need to apply first. It’s best to read the fine print and check with your lender whether this is a feature they offer. It can be a helpful addition, but as your lender can charge you a fee as well as interest for going into negative numbers, it’s best to avoid overdrafting when possible.

Can you have a joint savings account?

Yes. Joint savings accounts can be useful for two or more people wanting to combine their savings to meet shared financial goals, including spouses, flatmates and business partners.

Some joint savings accounts require all parties to sign before they can access the money. While less convenient, this extra security can help encourage all parties to meet their shared financial goals.

Other joint savings accounts allow any of the account holders to access the money. These accounts can be convenient for financially responsible couples that trust one another implicitly. 

How to open a savings account for my child?

Some banks and financial institutions allow parents to open a bank account for their child as soon as it is born, and start depositing funds to go towards the child’s future.

Children’s savings accounts generally don’t have fees, and are structured to help develop positive financial habits by limiting withdrawals, encouraging regular deposits, and earning interest on the savings, similarly to standard savings accounts.

Can you set up a savings account online?

Yes. Several large and small banks offer online applications for savings accounts, and there are also online-only financial institutions to consider.

Online-only savings accounts are often less expensive than other savings accounts, though they may not offer the same flexibility, features, or face-to-face service as more traditional savings accounts.

Who has the highest interest rates for savings accounts?

As banks frequently change their rates, the most accurate way to know who currently has the highest interest rate is to use a savings account comparison tool.