The average Australian wedding can cost around $50,000. This enormous bill is almost enough to put you off the entire thing, and with that in mind we have compiled a list of tips to help balance your budget and make sure you can have the day of your dreams without the hefty bill.
In those first few exciting days of wedding planning, it can be tempting to invite everyone you’ve ever met, just to share in the fact that you’re getting married. However, you have to pay for everyone you invite, so think it through and do the math before you post those invitations. Start with the people you can’t imagine not celebrating with, and then work outwards from there.
Professional invites can work out quite pricey, especially if you want more than just plain white card. If that’s the case, visit craft stores and stationery shops to buy supplies and get creative and make your own!
Artificial flowers are usually cheaper than fresh ones and will last forever — true value for money! But if you want real blooms negotiate with your florist, as if they’re doing all of your wedding flowers they might be willing to offer you a deal. Failing that, pick flowers that are in season to keep costs down, and consider arranging them yourself.
Consider buying your dress from the high street to keep costs down, or hire one rather than buy one outright. This will reduce the cost of wearing the dress of your dreams dramatically.
They’re small, but the cost can be huge. Shop around for a good deal, or get unwanted jewelry to melt down to save money. Search antique shops or reuse a ring in your family to create your own family heirloom and a new tradition.
You don’t need to hire a professional, especially if you have a friend who is good with a camera. If you want professional pictures though, you could always hire a photographer for just the ceremony, and then rely on friends to take pictures at the reception. This will reduce the rates. Another idea is to contact a local college with a photography course, and see if any of the students would be willing to photograph your wedding for a small fee.
Save money by hiring a suit. A lot of companies provide a discount if you hire more than one, so it’s always worth asking around. If money’s really tight, you could ask the best man to contribute towards his suit hire.
See if your usual hairdresser would be willing to offer you a good deal to style your hair, or ask a talented friend. Most department stores give free makeovers, so you could visit one to learn how to create a look, and then practice it at home ahead of your big day.
Consider having a buffet or barbecue rather than a sit down meal, and provide as much as you can from wholesale retailers, to avoid inflated venue costs.
If you know someone with a fancy car, ask them to drive you to the wedding to save on hire costs. If not, consider getting a lift in a normal car, or have the ceremony and reception in the same venue so there’s no need to travel from place to place.
Wait until you’ve finished paying for the wedding and can afford it before you book one. Ask guests to contribute to your honeymoon rather than buy you gifts, or look at taking a short break in Australia.
Even if you just follow a few of these tips, and use our clever budget planning tool, you’ll be able to afford the wedding of your dreams!