Planning your one of a kind wedding of a lifetime takes careful consideration to every detail. Understanding wedding costs now can help you with your wedding budget later. The average cost of a wedding in the United States is 26,000. The planning of a wedding is a collection of decisions. The decisions you will make will weigh heavily on the cost and outcome of your wedding so choose wisely. For instance you’ll need to decide If you will be planning your wedding or if you would like to hire a professional wedding planner. There are a number of options to make your day special on a smaller budget and we will explore those options later in the post. Let’s begin with the basics.
If your planning your first wedding and wondering where does that money go? Let’s see
The dress – Of course included in the bride’s budget will be hair and makeup spa, salon, lingerie and shopping. According to bridal association of America the average cost of a wedding dress is $1,500. On the high end expect $2,000 – $5,000
Tuxedo – The popular option for men is to rent the tuxedo. Depending on the type, a tux can $300 – $800
Wedding Bands – The rings are a little big thing since rings are a huge part of your budget. Again depending on the type ring budgets for both can be upwards of $10,000.
The wedding party – Although they are technically counted within the number of guests. The wedding party is a separate deal in my opinion. That’s because their needs need to be addressed first. Because depending on the number of groomsmen and bridesmaids, they’ll all have to be fitted and sized for their wardrobe. A good part of your budget will be spent on the “wedding party” alone.
Bridesmaids – In the mid range bridesmaids dresses cost about $100 – $250 each depending on detail of the dress.
Groomsmen – Traditionally groomsmen will rent. Tux rental can go from $300 – $800 for mid range or $1,500 for certain brands.
Photographer – It’s all about the pictures! A mid range package cost between $1,200 – $2,800. Upscale packages starting at $5,000. Typically budgeting $1,500 for a nice photo package and photographer will work.
Videographer – Memories that last a lifetime – the average costs of a videographer ranges from $1,400 – $1,900. An in-demand videographer may charge upwards of $7,000. Typically you should budget $1,500 to $2,000.
The number of guests – Will it be a small number of guests say, ten? Or three hundred in attendance? Keep in mind the number of guests will impact the size of the venue for the wedding and reception. You want to make sure you know how many people the location can accommodate.
Flowers – These are one of those things that seem like a small thing but it’s actually an expensive thing. Wedding flowers are expensive. Decide what you would like your floral arrangement to look like. $1,000 to $3,000 for the bride, bridesmaids, and wedding location and reception.
Where would you like to have your ceremony? A good old fashion church wedding? An outdoor ceremony at a Garden of some sort? Or the beach?
Church – There will usually be a fee associated with the church.
Outdoor Garden – Garden weddings, privately owned land. can start at $500 – $2,500. Depending on what’s included for instance chair and table rentals.
The Beach – even on the beach you will have the cost of the minister, catering and set up can run, $2,000 – $4,000
Some couples opt to have wedding and reception at the same place. Such as a “winery”. A wedding and reception at a winery is an elegant option. The lush grounds, make an awesome backdrop for your wedding. The best part is after the ceremony the guests can just walk over to a beautifully decorated dining room for the reception. Not to mention the variety of wines for all the wine buffs on your list which adds a little something extra to the evening, say $6,000 wedding and reception.
Reception – Average cost of a wedding reception is between $12,000 – $15,000. Brides magazine reports that 50% of a couples budget is spent on the reception.
The Cake – one of those items that seems like a little thing but remember little things add up. $600 – $3,000. Each tier on a wedding cake adds to the total cost in addition to cake decorations
Limousine transportation for the Wedding party – Prices can vary on limousines but rentals start at $200 – $400 for 3 hours each depending on how many cars you need.
Entertainment at reception – Most couples opt for a DJ, or you might want to have a band
Happily ever after
- Honeymoon- Although separate from the cost of the wedding. In addition is your honeymoon. Some couples view a honeymoon as optional, with the idea in mind that we’ll take a honeymoon later. I’m NOT one of those people. You should absolutely celebrate the start of your new life together in style and have a ball for at least a week.In fact I suggest making the honeymoon one of your big ticket items in other words do not skimp on this event.
8 Ways to cut the cost of your wedding without looking cheap
- The biggest and first thing to do to cut down the cost of your wedding, Is to cut the number of guests. Size matters.
- Think outside the box! You don’t have to do things traditionally. Do what works for you and your budget. For instance, time of day matters, a buffet lunch is less expensive than evening dinner complete with appetizers and three course meal with desert and champagne. Also most venue charge more for night dinners.
- Be flexible – Compare your options via the internet. Before deciding on any purchase. You may find something better online.
- Wedding flowers can run into the thousands. Stick with flowers that are in season.
- Step out for the reception – You don’t have to spend a bundle on a reception hall – opt for beautiful garden receptions or reception at the beach. Summer receptions outdoors rock!
- Keep the food casual – Who says you have to serve surf and turf – Go with tasty filler foods, sliders appetizers, baked potatoes, fresh salads, shrimp cocktail is a favorite and not too terribly expensive.
- DIY – Planning the wedding yourself instead of a planner can significantly bring down cost.
- Focus on what’s important – Focus on the “day” Bonding your union, and not on the things you’ll have around you. Because at the end of the day it’s the love you share that’s important not the temporal things that really don’t matter. The flowers will die the guests will go home, however you and he will remain. Thank God for each other and pray over your marriage. Have fun!
A Holy Sacrament, The two shall become one.
God Bless Lilian and Joseph Meyers my great grandparents whose descendants will celebrate their family reunion today.
Author’s note: May God Bless my family today. The Family Reunion of the Meyers & Lashley families today, June 8, 2017. 1 Corinthians 13:8, “Love never fails!” Enjoy your day everyone!