4 money-saving tips for planning your wedding

Weddings are expensive, but a frugal couple can cut costs and still have the wedding they want. Here's four simple ways you can save money when planning your wedding.

4 money-saving tips for planning your wedding

1. Hire a wedding coordinator

  • Most brides think that hiring a wedding coordinator will break their budget, but quite the opposite can be true.
  • It's a little-known fact that wedding coordinators can actually save you money. They can arrange all kinds of discounts and perks with partner vendors.
  • Use caution, though. Anyone can call themselves a wedding planner, so look for someone who's certified.

2. Read the fine print on your contract

  • Caterers bank on the fact that most clients won't read their contracts carefully. They often charge you for things that you don't know you're being charged for.
  • They might have a minimum number of guests they'll serve, a per-slice cake-cutting fee or overtime for waitstaff who stay late.
  • These fees are often not added until the final invoice, so make sure you get a breakdown of all extra costs before the big day.

3. Skip the custom-printed invitations

  • Here's a secret: most people couldn't care less about other couples' wedding invitations.
  • Your guests will probably never even notice the scalloped edges and silver ink that cost you an extra two dollars per print. They also probably won't know if you've made your invitations yourselves.
  • Instead of ordering custom-made invitations, use invitation software. Your whole set of invites will only cost about 40 dollars.
  • Although they're the enemy of wedding invitation designers, invitation software packages offer modern fonts and graphics. Plus, they're easy to use.

4. Book a budding musical talent

  • If you've always dreamed of having a live string quartet at your wedding but can't afford their fees, hire music students. Your guests probably won't notice the difference.
  • A local performing arts school, university or music school will be able to recommend some students.
  • You may also find performers' contact information on bulletin boards at music stores.
  • To avoid disaster, hold a brief audition for your musicians before you hire them. Or ask for permission to observe them at another gig.

With a few simple tricks, you can keep your wedding within its budget and still have the day you've always dreamed of. Reading your contracts carefully and thinking about your guests' experiences are perfect places to start and save money.

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