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  • Writer's pictureAlyssa Napier

Top 5 Things You Should Prioritize (And Where to Save) In Your Wedding Budget

Wedding costs can start piling up faster than you expect, so we're going to help you decide where to focus your wedding budget! Some things are a must, while others can be left out completely. Don't know where to start? Keep reading!

What to Prioritize

1. Venue

Your wedding venue is what your guests will remember the most. Make this your big "wow" to impress your friends and family. You should find your wedding venue first, because this makes planning everything else much easier. You'll need to know if your venue requires you to use their preferred vendors, their capacity limits, and whether they have a space for both the reception and ceremony (if that's what you're going for).

Image by: Karsten Winegeart

2. Entertainment

Don't leave your guests bored at your wedding! Keep them entertained while they're waiting for dinner to be served and for you to cut the cake. At my own wedding, we had a photo booth. This was such a great memory for us and everyone who participated! We had so many pictures to look back on and everyone had a blast. Don't forget about music, too! Hire a band, a DJ, or make sure you've got someone in charge of your playlist. Get your guests out on the dance floor and give them a night to remember!

Image by: Zane Persaud

3. Food

I think it's safe to say that everyone loves food, especially really good food. You don't have to have five-star catering, but definitely don't skimp on a good meal for your guests. They'll be in a great mood to celebrate after having a delicious meal.

Image by: Fabio Sangregorio

4. Photographer

You can always see a huge difference between photos taken by Uncle Tom and those taken by a professional photographer. Wedding photographers are there to make sure you get all of the shots, boost your confidence, and give you beautiful memories of your big day. If you want stunning pictures to look back on, make a photo album with, and share on social media, prioritize your photographer in your wedding budget.

Image by: Fallon Michael

5. Dress

This may be a controversial opinion, as you only wear your wedding dress once, but we definitely believe in keeping your dress at the top of your priority list. Your wedding dress will be seen by everyone, photographed from all angles, and make you feel like the most beautiful girl in the room. If you find "the dress" at a thrift shop or online marketplace, that's amazing! But if you find your dress and it's a little bit over your budget, consider pinching pennies in other parts of your budget and splurging on the dress of your dreams.

Image by: Jonathan Borba

Where to Save

1. Save on Decorations

If you can find a beautiful venue with lots of florals and a solid foundation, you won't need to dress it up with a bunch of decorations. Rather than over-decorate, keep it simple! Your guests likely won't notice if you have smaller centerpieces or less florals down the aisle than you had originally planned.

Image by: Vitor Monthay

2. Guest List

Cutting your guest list is one of the easiest ways to save the most money on your wedding. Here are some tips to keeping your guest list short:

  • Create your guest list in order of: immediate family, close friends, extended family, & extended friends

  • Determine how many guests you can actually afford (based on your venue & food costs)

  • Consider an adults only wedding

  • Ask yourself the following questions: Do you have them in your phone contacts? Do you still see them in your life in five years? Have you spoken to them in the last year? If you answered no, remove them from the list.

Image by: Hannah Olinger

3. Day of the Week

Having your wedding on a weekday can significantly decrease the overall cost of your wedding. Wedding vendors typically have greater availability and bigger discounts on weekdays. If you can make a weekday work for you, go for it!

Image by: Renáta-Adrienn

4. Guest Favors

Technically, wedding favors are not required, but they are a nice way to say "thank you" to your guests. However, many guests end up leaving their favors at the wedding! If you don't eliminate them entirely, consider cheaper options that you can buy in bulk and won't break the bank.

Image by: The HK Photo Company

5. Wedding Invitations

Wedding invitations can still be just as beautiful if you don't invest in a custom stationery designer and make them yourself. Want to know our favorite way to make gorgeous invitations at a fraction of the cost? DIY them! How? Start with a template. This allows you to have a starting point, but gives you the freedom to customize them the way you want. Then, when you're ready to print, check out this blog post to learn budget-friendly ways to print your invitations.

We want to know what you're prioritizing and where you've saving on your wedding! Let us know in the comments.

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