We all know how expensive planning a wedding can be, but there's no need to go into debt over it! Instead, set yourselves up for success by considering your wedding budget early, planning strategically, and keeping an eye on your finances—all while making sure your biggest priorities are accounted for. And of course you'll want a little extra available when it's all said and done for your dream honeymoon!
To help keep you on budget, we sat down with a pro: Sara Margulis, CEO of Honeyfund. Here are her top five steps to planning a spectacular wedding on a budget.
1. Start Dreaming
Before you talk money, sit down with your partner and imagine your dream wedding. Is there a venue or location you love? Would you rather have a seated dinner or an energetic cocktail reception? Will a band or a DJ bring everyone to the dance floor? And don't forget to think about your honeymoon! Write down the things that are most important, then keep them in mind as you start to plan your budget.
2. Examine Your Finances
If you're paying for some (or all) of the wedding yourselves, take a look at your savings accounts. How much is available to spend right now? How much more can you save between now and your wedding day? And how much are you willing to spend? If your family is going to contribute, talk to them about how much they're comfortable adding to your budget. Pick a number that works for everyone—and be sure to save some extra for your honeymoon, as well as miscellaneous or surprise costs.
3. Schedule Automatic Transfers
The easiest way to save money from every paycheck is to designate a portion that will automatically transfer to your savings account. That way you won't be tempted to spend it during your bachelorette weekend!
4. Create a Thorough Budget
Use a budget calculator to make sure you're covering all of the necessary expenses. Tweak the amounts and percentages until they fit your total budget. And don't forget those priorities you outlined in step one: Play with your budget so you can earmark a little extra cash to spring for that amazing band or an upgraded bar package.
5. Set Up a Honeyfund
While you've already set aside some cash for your big trip, use your Honeyfund as a way to supplement your savings and turn this into the trip of a lifetime. Start planning, listing out all of the exciting experiences you're hoping to have so that guests can contribute to a couples massage, a romantic dinner on the beach, or an upgrade to first class. This way, they can celebrate you with a gift as well as enjoy playing a role in your dream trip!