Wedding on a Budget #2: Booking on a Budget

This is the second in a series of four blog posts I’ll be writing that revolve
around having a beautiful wedding without breaking the bank.

Hello! I am writing this blog post from New Jersey, where a fresh blanket of snow is making itself at home. Today the Northeast got hammered by Winter Storm Stella, but we were lucky enough to only receive six or so inches of the white fluffy stuff.

This post, the second in my Wedding on a Budget series, is all about booking wedding vendors on a budget. Unfortunately no matter how you cut it, weddings are expensive, but hopefully these three tips help soften the financial blow that comes with formally celebrating your nuptials.

Here we go:

1. Choose An Off Day/Season

The day and season of your wedding makes a big deal. A BIG deal. Just ask your potential venue the difference in pricing between a Saturday in June and a Friday or Sunday in December and you’ll see what I mean. Unless you’re loaded and dead-set on a specific time of year for your wedding, it’s worth looking into “off days” and “off seasons.” Typically spring and summer Saturdays are most expensive, while fall and winter Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays are more affordable. Ask about the pricing for different times of year – it’s worth it!

2. Check For Promos

Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for promos! I haven’t attended a bridal show, but I hear you can find some killer deals there. Also, in a similar vein to tip #1, ask and see if your venue offers any promo for signing your contract during an “off season” or far in advance. We received a whopping 20% discount for signing our contract in the winter, and I’ve heard of other couples receiving discounts for booking a year or more in advance.

3. Remember Those Fees!

Until I got engaged, I had NO idea about the fees involved in wedding contracts! For example, on top of your standard per-person charge, most venues charge a hefty service fee. This fee can run over 20%, and usually goes toward paying certain wedding staff. Always make sure you understand what’s included in your service fee – they’re all different. Our includes tip for the servers, but not the bartenders or maitre d’ … so there’s even more money required for tips. Definitely understand EVERY fee before you sign a contract – neglecting to do so could run you thousands of extra dollars you weren’t planning on spending.

That’s all for now – time for me to get shoveling! I hope these tips were helpful!

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