Choosing a wedding date can be difficult. There are so many schedules to contend with, plus the availability of your favorite venues and your dream vendors—and not to mention your budget. If you’re aiming for peak wedding season, those Saturday nights may already be full, and the ones that are free could come at a budget-busting fee. So can you skip the most popular night and opt for a Sunday wedding instead? Absolutely—but there are a few things to keep in mind.
Saturday nights are the most common choices for weddings because they’re super convenient for everyone. Guests can travel on Friday evening or Saturday morning, and then head home on Sunday, all without having to take time off work to be able to celebrate with you. With that, though, comes a higher fee and limited availability. It’s the law of supply and demand at work. There are only so many Saturdays per year (and even fewer during prime wedding season), so venues can charge a premium. That means you might have a tough time finding a Saturday that fits your schedule and your budget, which is where off nights come in.
So, what’s the best way to have a Sunday wedding? Here are some tips to make it work for you—and your guests.
Be Respectful of Schedules
You know Saturday night is the most convenient time to have a wedding, so if you’re planning for Sunday instead, keep that in mind. Instead of an all-night rager, consider a brunch or early afternoon wedding. This will either give guests time to travel when your wedding is over or get them to bed early enough that they can make the trip at the crack of dawn on Monday. Be sure to also consider the timing of church services and how that may impact your wedding schedule or your guests' ability to join in the festivities.
Understand Your Turnout
Your bottom line might be lower if you get married on a Sunday, but your guest count might be too. Even if you do plan to host your wedding earlier in the day, there’s a chance some guests (especially those who would have to travel farther or have kids in school) simply won’t be able to make it. Don’t be discouraged, though. You’ll still have a core group of guests who are thrilled to celebrate with you. On the other hand, though, if most of your guests are local, you might end up with more in attendance than you anticipated. If your loved ones have jam-packed social calendars, they may be more likely to have a free Sunday afternoon or evening than they would a Saturday night.
Be Wary of Holiday Weekends
Weekends like Memorial Day and Labor Day seem like great choices since almost everyone has Monday off (turning Sunday into another Saturday night). However, travel expenses during these holidays can jump in price, making attending your wedding a major investment. Venues, like hotels, are also in high demand, meaning you probably won’t save much money.
Before you book, ask your venue to provide weekend pricing so you can make an educated decision about just how much it will cost.
Pack Your Day-Of Schedule
Sunday weddings mean no morning-after brunch (unless you’ve chosen a long weekend date). Instead, shift the festivities to Saturday night with a welcome party. Or, if you’re having a morning ceremony and a brunch or luncheon reception, have an after-party later in the evening. Serve wine and hors d’oeuvres or your favorite cocktails, and really enjoy your full wedding day, all before your usual Sunday night bedtime.
Keep It Fun
Just because your wedding is on Sunday doesn’t mean you have to cut back on the good times. You can still serve fabulous cocktails, hire that band you love, and decorate your venue to the nines—even if the last call is closer to 9 p.m. than midnight. And remember, if the two of you are having a blast, your guests will too.