When you sit down to work out the budget for your wedding, you will of course remember all the big things – ceremony costs, venue, flowers, rings, outfits, transport, photographer, etc., but what about the smaller items. As you get carried away in the excitement of your upcoming nuptials, it’s easy to forget that the little things add up and before you know it, you have burst your budget.
From the very beginning, make a list of everything you want for your Wedding Day and price it. Keep note in a Wedding Planning Notebook or Spreadsheet and update it regularly as quotes come in and you make decisions on what to include and what to leave out. If you buy something that wasn’t on the original list, be sure to add it on, record the cost, adjusting your totals as you go. Keeping an eye on what you’ve spent and how much you have left to spend will keep you on track and avoid any unwelcome surprises at the end.
Items often forgotten about, but that still need to be accounted for include:
- Gifts for Bridesmaids, Groomsmen, Flower Girls, Parents and anyone who has helped you out on the day. Set a budget and stick to it.
- Are you posting your invitations and thank you cards? Don’t forget to include the cost of postage. Some couples will include a few photos with thank you cards. Although each photo can be printed cheaply enough, the cost can quickly add up.
- Wedding Favours and DIY Decor – There is no end to what you can spend here and the price can add up when you multiply it by the number of guests or tables. Be careful.
- Include any pre-wedding beauty treatments you may want, such as a manicure, facial, spray tan or a massage.
- Unless you’re very lucky, your wedding dress is going to require some alterations, and it’s important it fits correctly. Once the word “Bridal” is involved, prices go up, so check what the cost will be and be sure you state it’s a wedding dress. The cost for hemming a simple skirt will be considerably cheaper than hemming a wedding dress. Don’t underestimate the cost in your budget.
- Invest in good underwear for the day – no rubbing, pinching or creeping!
- Prepare a Wedding Day Emergency Kit with spare pins, plasters, headache tablets etc. These items can be picked up over time, but make an allowance in your budget.
- Grooms party accessories – Do the guys need bow ties or cuff links? What about a hot shave on the morning of the wedding? Account for these items in your wedding planning budget.
- On the morning of the wedding you will need breakfast and snacks. Some bridal parties have matching robes/pyjamas for those early morning photos. If you decide to do this, shop around to get the best price.
- Wedding Insurance – This is not overly expensive but very worthwhile. If something should go wrong, at least you will have it covered.
- Music/Drink License – Check with your venue if this is included in their charge, or do you need to pay for it separately.
- Are there Corkage Charges in your venue? It’s important to ask.
- When you count the number of guests for your Wedding Meal, don’t forget to include yourselves.
- If your photographer, videographer, musicians are staying for the evening you will need to arrange meals for them. Do you need to pay for their transport too? Check.
- Are your suppliers’ prices before or after tax? This can be a costly addition if you thought it was included and it turns out that it wasn’t.
- Tips – Church donation, servers, catering and bar staff, taxi, hairdresser, etc., they all add up. Be sure to include them in your budgeting.
- If your party is adjourning to the late bar, you’ll need cash with you.
- If you are inviting children to your wedding, it is always a good idea to provide something to amuse them. Goody Bags don’t need to be expensive, but there will be some cost involved nonetheless.
- If you’re having a destination wedding your passports may need to be renewed adding another expense. Don’t forget to book an extra bag on the plane and perhaps purchase priority seating. You’ll also need to buy sun cream.
- Set aside about 10 to 20% for unexpected issues such as the weather changes and you need to buy umbrellas; you rip something on the morning of the wedding and need last minute repairs; or you simply break a nail and need to get it fixed. Who knows what might happen, and hopefully you won’t need this fund. Any left-over contingency money can be put towards your honeymoon.
It’s important to set a realistic budget for your Wedding Day and by including all the little things from the beginning you will have a better idea of how much you need. When you see the costs written down it can help you prioritise what’s really important and what elements can be ditched. Do what feels right for you, not what others expect. Being prepared and asking about hidden costs is the best way to keep you on track.
Being organised and prepared from the beginning can make a real difference when planning your wedding. We, at Marry Me in Lake Garda, would love to share our expert advice with you, call us to arrange a consultation and find out more about how we can help.
Tel: +353 87 6742020