Two weekends ago I went with my friend in the search for the perfect wedding dress for her wedding next year in Boracay in the Philippines! I am so excited, having had a beach wedding ourselves it would be amazing to attend someone elses! (The above photo was taken on our wedding day) We got chatting about bridesmaids dresses and her general budget for everything, it reminded me how stressful it was when I was planning my wedding and how important it was to keep track of spending from beginning to start.
I decided to write a post to share with you all with some general money pointers in helping you plan for your big day mainly helping you juggle your finances.
Arranging a wedding big or small everything comes down to money, what you can or can't afford so it's important to work out a budget before you do anything. I have known one couple to take out a short term loan to pay for their big day and 2 years into paying it off one of them was made redundant and the redundancy pay out enabled them to pay off their loan a lot earlier than planned. Others like myself set our wedding date 2 years ahead so we were able to work out how much we can save until the big day. Or some are lucky enough to have their parents contribute a big amount along with their own savings.
For those who are organised will find the planning / budgeting rather easy but for those who really struggle and have no idea where to start there is plenty of info online and *Everyday Loans have a really easy wedding calculator you can use which is a step by step guide.
Where do you want the service?
Where do you want the venue?
What music do you want during the ceremony?
What entertainment do you want at the reception?
How many day guests will there be?
How many evening guests will there be?
How would you like to capture your day?
What stationery will you have?
Will you be purchasing a wedding dress?
How many suits will you need?
How many bridesmaid dresses will you need?
How many people having hair & make up?
One ring or two?
What budget do you have in mind for all of the above?
Answer all the questions above and it will give you an amount to allocate for each of the things you select. It's a starting point and you can move the amounts allocated around eg: allocate less for bridesmaid / suits so shrink that budget and allocate more to the wedding dress instead. So figure out what is more important to you both and what you are less fussed about!
It's always good to haggle as businesses always want your business. Try not to be indecisive as that will cause you many problems, if you are unsure ask a friend who you trust their opinions. You can always delegate to that friend on helping you create short lists for a few things eg: bridesmaid dresses / flower companies
I think it gives you a great starting point as to where to start and its also good to buy a note book so everything wedding related can be written / collected in the book. Creating an excel spreadsheet of all your costs is also useful.
The best advice I can give anyone who is wedding planning is keep to budget, there will always be something you can't afford but want. You must never get carried away with picking things you cannot afford and this is how budgets go wrong! You do it for a few things and before you know it you maybe a few thousand over your budget!
For those who are wedding planning what do you struggle with the most? If you have planned a wedding what is the best advice you can give?
PS: Let me know if you would like to see more photos from our beach wedding! The photo above was taken during our beach ceremony.