Around 46% of couples are cutting their wedding budget by around 31% – as found in the recently published The Wedding Report (by S McMurray). It makes sense, considering how challenging current times are economically for people across the globe.
In G20 countries, reports the International Labor Organization, industrial production declined, on average, by around 28%, leading to what the study authors called “a severe decline in working hours and employment.”
These statistics have had a noticeable effect on the wedding sector, with around 41.5% of couples totally rescheduling their weddings to 2021. If you have been planning your big day and you want your day to be meaningful and memorable despite tough economic times, the following tips may be of aid.
Setting A Budget
The first step towards budgeting for a wedding involves having a clear picture of each major cost, and what percentage of your total budget it represents. Knowing what to expect will enable you to create a savings plan and to set a realistic date, by which you should have comfortably raised the amounts you need.
Setting a budget will enable you to prioritize and minimize costs on optional items in the months leading up to your wedding. These include dining out, clothes shopping, beauty and skincare products, entertainment, and other costs you might decide to go without until you have celebrated your big event.
What Are The Average Wedding Costs In The U.S.?
The average cost of a wedding in the U.S. is $33,900, as found in a Knot study. However, as pointed out by Nerd Wallet, this figure is considered steep, since a celebrity wedding costing millions can skew the average of thousands of weddings costing less than $10,000.
According to Knot, the biggest expenses include the reception venue (costing in the region of $15,000), the photography (around $2,700), the reception band ($4,250), the ceremony site (around $2,400) and the photographer ($2,700) and videographer ($2,000). Flowers and other decorations, meanwhile, set many couples back approximately $2,411.
Reducing Your Guest List
The Wedding Report indicates that this year, around 58% of couples reduced their guest list by half. This is a way to tackle the most expensive facet of a wedding: the reception.
Each guest will set you back around $70 per head, so if you have an average number of guests (167 in the U.S.), your bill may total $11,700 for the food alone – expenses such as renting out the venue, gardens, tents, and the like, may raise this amount significantly higher. Considering a smaller wedding attended by one’s close family and social circle may be a way to avoid having to scrimp on other priorities you value more.
Consider A Wider Range Of Venues
You may have your heart set on a particular resort or venue, but thinking out of the box may just reveal a unique and creative venue that will cost you considerably less. Holding a rustic wedding in a barn, reports Rachel Cruze, can cost as little as $7,000, while a backyard wedding can bring costs right down to $3,500.
Indeed, if a family member has a beautiful backyard overlooking the sea or lush greenery, you probably couldn’t ask for a more aesthetically pleasing venue. Small touches such as fairy lights in trees and large candles on steps leading to the garden can add romanticism and beauty, and saving on your reception venue will allow you to keep non-negotiable expenses (a good photographer should probably be on your ‘must have’ list, for instance, since a wedding is considered one of the most important days of one’s life).
Reducing Or Eliminating Pre-Wedding Fanfare
There are many pre-wedding events that help to add to the fun and meaningfulness of your wedding, but which can also rack up costs that may not be possible to assume in current times. One of these is a rehearsal dinner, seen as the perfect way to greet guest who have traveled from out of town, and to ensure that guests mingle and get to know each other before your wedding day.
A study of over 27,000 couples who were married in 2019 showed that the average cost of a rehearsal dinner was around $2000 (this amount includes food, décor and invitations). If you’re on a tight budget, you can either give this event a miss, or make it more intimate, inviting guests to a garden party at your home and serving hors devours in a cocktail-style setting.
Depending on where you live, you might also consider a fun barbecue. If the affair will be intimate, guests might enjoy making it a potluck event so they can do their share to help the couple save for their reception.
Renting Flower Pots And Décor
If you want your wedding to be beautiful but you want to keep things eco- and budget-friendly, rethinking traditional wedding décor may help you achieve both aims. Instead of decorating tables and surroundings with cut flowers and bouquets, for instance, why not hire potted flowers, which can continue to live and delight others long after you have tied the knot?
Instead of relying on flowers to provide your reception hall with color, think of other ways to brighten up the occasion. A donut wall, for instance, will probably receive more ‘oohs and aahs’ than the standard flower wall, since it goes beyond the expected.
Weddings this year and in the near future will be small in size and budget, owing to the current financial crisis. Many couples who have postponed their wedding to next year are still planning on having their dream day come true. Adjustments may need to be made – primarily in their venue choice and the size of their guest list – but these may end up resulting in more unique, intimate weddings that are filled with meaning and love.