Your wedding day is supposed to be the most memorable day of your life, but for many couples, the huge outlay it often involves can sometimes mean it is remembered for all the wrong reasons.
While of course it’s important make sure your occasion is as special as can be, the last thing you want is to be still paying it off years after the event. Why sacrifice a luxurious life together for the sake of one day?
According to Nutmeg, the average cost of a UK wedding now stands at £20,983 – they’ve even broken down the costs individually and offered stats on who pays – but you don’t need to break the bank to celebrate in style.
In fact, you can comfortably knock a digit off that total without compromising on your big day. Here are a handful of tips on how to ensure your special occasion is the talk of the town without being a blight on your bank account.
While it might be romantic to get hitched in a beautiful church, the cheapest way to tie the knot is at a registrar’s office. All in, the ceremony here should cost around £119 (£35 each paid in advance, £45 to officially register the union afterwards, £4 for the certificate), which is a snip compared to a religious wedding.
Steering clear of wedding venues is a no-brainer when it comes to budget weddings, since they invariably slap a fat surcharge onto any base rate. It might surprise you to know that many pubs and restaurants accommodate wedding parties for a small fee (or perhaps even no fee at all!), provided you buy all of your food and drink from the bar.
Alternatively, a friend’s spacious back garden can serve as a lovely backdrop on a warm day.
It’s not a proper wedding without the dress, is it? Fortunately, you don’t have to spend an arm and a leg to get hold of a breath-taking outfit; sites such as Honeypie Boutique and Unique Vintage are dedicated to providing reproductions of classic attire at reduced prices. Alternatively, you could go for second-hand; Still White and Sell My Wedding Dress are great hubs for uniting used dresses with new owners. After all, you’re only going to wear it once, aren’t you?
Food and drink
Inviting guests for an afternoon service means you only have to provide one meal instead of two, and you can even rope friends and family into bringing their own dishes. If everyone chips in with something small, it soon adds up. Meanwhile, discount booze can be sought at wholesalers or even by taking advantage of supermarket offers. Cajole a friend into serving as bartender and cocktail maker and you’ll cut another financial corner.
Without a doubt, you’ll want lots and lots of photos to commemorate your big day and give you something to look back on and reminisce about in the years to come.
Aside from the old trick of leaving Kodak cameras on each place mat (which can work extraordinarily well, by the way), there are a number of other ways to get great pictures on the cheap.
Ply your contacts book for photographer acquaintances, employ a student from a local photography school or enter competitions. You never know, you might win big!
Ricky Willis is the original Skint Dad. A money-making enthusiast, father, and husband to Naomi. He is always looking for unique ways to earn a little extra.