When it comes to budgeting for your wedding, some couples pluck out figures from the sky, and while some take time to work out their figures based on what they have saved or are happy to spend.
In all the excitement in anticipation of the big day, it’s easy to throw yourself into planning without really knowing how much weddings cost.
The average cost of a UK wedding stands at £32,000. Your budget might be lower or higher, but it’s all about having the proper budget and making it work for you.
Here’s an idea of how much average weddings costs today
- Engagement ring – £2,419
- Venue hire – £5,406
- Food – £3,887
- Drink – £1,587
- Wedding dress/outfit – £1,313
- Entertainment/music – £1,005
- Photography – £1,155
- Video – £968
- Honeymoon – £4,645
Remember that depending on your style, location, and season, these costs may vary. People have indeed got married with less and more- so find your middle ground.
Budgeting For a Wedding
So, now that you know how much weddings cost you can now focus on creating a realistic wedding budget you are happy with.
And yes, It’s possible to plan the wedding of your dreams, give your family and friends a memorable experience and not start your married life neck-deep in debt?
If you feel panicky after looking at this list, then you need to consider other options like taking an all-inclusive package or delaying your honeymoon to cut down on costs.
Deciding on a suitable budgeting method for your wedding
There are a number of budget methods you can use for you your wedding budget. The one we recommend is the 50/30/20 rule budget method. This is where you allocate 50% towards your wedding priority needs, 30% to wants and 20% towards your wedding savings for books honeymoon and wedding emergency fund.
How much weddings cost vs how much your budget can afford
Here are six areas to explore when considering how much your wedding will cost:
1. Plan With Your Partner What You Can Both Afford
To ensure your ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ day goes according to plan, start by determining the kind of wedding you both want.
You can do this by writing up a budget that will help to keep expectations in check.
Review your income, how much you have in savings and set out what you want to spend on your wedding.
Be sure to include financial commitments for friends and family as well as the honeymoon.
2. Find Out If Anyone Else Is Happy to Contribute
While there are not many expectations for the bride’s family to pay for the wedding, it’s worth finding out if either parent can contribute financially.
If not they may even offer to help out with specific costs like wedding dress or flowers. Be sure to verify they can afford to contribute.
The last thing you want is your parents or loved ones going into debt themselves to make your wedding day special. Don’t forget to let them know how grateful you are for their generosity.
3. Create a Guest List and Determine Your Venue
Your guest list size will determine how much you should aim to save.
If you are going for the micro wedding style route with less than 20 guests, smaller venues, e.g. a private room in a pub or outdoor beachfront, are much more affordable.
The larger your guest size, the larger the venue you’ll need and the more the price.
Subsequently, if you do see that your guest list may spread you too thin, you could give yourself time to save more or cut down the list.
Remember, you’ll still have to deal with the other significant costs which you can find towards the end of this article.
4. Set Aside 10-15% as your Wedding Emergency Fund in Your Budget
Having worked out how much you can save and how far your money can stretch, you would have set a rough budget.
However, little unexpected costs have a way of coming out of the woodwork and increasing your overall wedding costs!
Therefore, have a contingency plan for such scenarios. Take out 10 to 15% of your budget and keep toward unexpected expenses like these. Y
ou should keep aside at least £500 to £1000 for a taxi or car rental in case something goes wrong with your transportation booking, or you need to get a replacement bridesmaid dress or even want to get more food and celebratory drink if they run out in your party.
5. Clear the Big Costs
A bulk part of your budget will be on the venue hire fee. But one traditional wedding budget wisdom is to halve your budget to cover venue hire, food, and drink charges.
Another money-saving opportunity to reduce your wedding cost is that venues can offer competitive wedding packages.
Also, ensure all your expenses with suppliers are known, so you are not surprised by any hidden charges, like delivery, service, and VAT fees.
6. Prioritise the Rest of Your Budget
The remaining part of your budget will take care of everything else, including outfits, wedding rings, flowers, decor, stationery, and so forth.
Draw up a list for these with your partners and determine what kind of photographer you need based on what you have.
Any fancy invitations? Photo booth?
Live music or hiring a Rolls Royce to drive you to the ceremony.
It helps to make a nice-to-have list of things that you like but aren’t fussed about having.
If you don’t want your wedding to go on without your must-haves, you should adapt your budget to allow for this by simply sacrificing the nice-to-have items for your must-have items.
Your must-have items may include a massive cake, expensive wedding rings or centrepieces.
Having a nice-to-have will also allow you to add things later if you have money left over in your budget.
And It’s a Wrap
Although your wedding day is special, you have to keep in mind what happens after the wedding is more important. One of the biggest reasons many marriages fail today is due to debt and financial worries.
Whatever you spend should be based on how much you can afford. Once you have an idea about how much weddings cost, it’s then down to you to adjust the actual cost with your budget.
The best assurance for a successful wedding is planning and setting a realistic budget. Once you have set your budget, you have to spend on the things most important to you and be flexible on the things that don’t contribute so much to making your day special.