Yes, it's possible: get married for less than $5,000

You can tighten your budget and still enjoy a beautiful wedding and reception. Here's how to pull of stunning nuptials at a fraction of the cost.

Yes, it's possible: get married for less than $5,000

Nearly everyone who's planned a wedding will tell you it isn't possible to do it right for less than $10,000.

In Canada, it's true that hosting an inexpensive wedding and reception is hard to do.  But by planning ahead and employing a few of these budgeting tricks, you can have a great wedding for less than $5,000.

Budget breakdown

To host a great wedding for less than $5,000, there are three areas in which you can usually make big adjustments: the dress, the venue and catering.

The wedding gown

Addicted to wedding gown reality shows? You probably know that most of the brides spend more than $2,000. They may look beautiful, but can they look just as beautiful for less money? Of course they can.

  • The easiest way to find a great wedding dress for under $1,000 is to do your homework.
  • Don't buy the first thing you like.
  • Shop around at online boutiques where you can often find handmade gowns for less than $500.
  • You can also search for used dresses, worn only once by their original brides. Even with dry cleaning and alterations factored in, these gowns typically cost much less than those found at bridal boutiques.

The venue

One of the best ways to cut costs and make wedding plans much simpler is to find a combination deal for the venue and food.

  • There are some breathtaking locations that offer package deals for couples in every province.
  • Look for a base price around $2,000, and discuss which additional items to add to the package.
  • Photography, a special wedding cake, and an on-site ceremony are some options.

Catering

You can plan a relatively small reception party to lower your costs. Although it's possible to cover the cost of a full dinner or lunch for all your guests, it could make a serious dent in your budget.

Fortunately, there are alternatives.

  • Consider having the venue put together a cocktail with appetizers in place of a meal; this will keep guests comfortable and lower your costs considerably.

A stunning celebration

By planning ahead, doing some research, looking at alternatives and package deals, you can throw a stunning celebration of your love without emptying your pocketbook.

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