Wedding Planning on a Budget: Six Simple Ways to Save Money on Your Big Day

Husband and wife just married celebrating their wedding day walking thru the crowd.

Once the initial excitement wears off and the numbers for your big day start adding up, eloping can start to seem more and more appealing! With so much to consider, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. Fear not, however! Help is at hand. Pop the kettle on for a well-earned cuppa and read on for six simple ways to trim your wedding budget, without losing any of the magic.

1. Get Married Off-Season

Don’t be afraid to get married at an off-peak time that offers better value if it suits your plans. Quieter months such as January, February and November can offer much cheaper deals on venues as well as vendors. Chances are that your prospective wedding guests have less going on at these times also and will be more excited for an event to spice up their calendar.

Wedding table decorations

2. DIY Your Decor

Not only can you save a lot of money when you take some of the wedding décor elements into your own hands, but it can make your wedding a lot more unique and personal. If you’re not artistic yourself, don’t be afraid to call on your friends. Not only will this save you money, but you’ll have the added bonus of involving your BFFs in your wedding as well. Make a fun event out of the preparation and chances are that your friends will be delighted to get involved.

Wedding table decorations

3. Picture This

It’s a good idea to hire a professional photographer to capture those moments you’ll want to remember during the ceremony and earlier parts of your wedding day. However, weddings go on for a long time and billable hours for your photographer can easily add up. As an alternative, consider taking the evening photography into your own hands. Set up a hashtag and post this clearly in the reception venue asking your guests to share their candid snaps of the evening on your favourite social platform or app. That way, you can look back on all the fun as you’re unwinding the following day.

An outdoor wedding venue

4. Cut Out What You Don’t Need

Make savings where you can by taking advantage of your wedding location. For instance, if your wedding reception is taking place in a beautiful venue, why not make the most out of the location and host your ceremony there also? Or if you’re having dessert, ask yourself if you really need a tiered cake? If you’re determined to get that cake-cutting photo, consider having fake cake layers underneath one layer of genuine cake. Chances are that nobody will ever know!

A woman choosing her wedding dress

5. Something Old

Wedding dresses can take up a huge amount of your budget, especially if you have your heart set on a designer label. But happily enough, nowadays there are a lot of options for buying second-hand dresses that have only been worn once from online resources to charity shops. Or you could opt for a sleek number from an affordable ready-wear brand. All it takes is a little digging and you can save a huge chunk of cash without sacrificing any style points. It’s also worth thinking about old family heirlooms that can be incorporated into your wedding outfit. Old pieces of jewellery can be repurposed into wedding rings or used as a sentimental keepsake such as a broach.

6. Something New

We’re well and truly immersed in the digital age, yet some of our wedding traditions still haven’t moved on with the times. Almost everyone on your guest list is likely to have access to a computer so why not send out e-vites instead of invitations in the post? Using e-vites or even a personalised website helps you to save money on invitation design, printing, postage and return stamps/ envelopes for RSVPs.

With your six budget-saving tips to hand, now all you have to concentrate on is enjoying the run-up to the day itself. It’s your day, so make sure that you’re prioritising the parts that are important to you and your partner. For instance, if you really want a band rather than a DJ or an expensive dress, then treat yourself and compromise elsewhere. And remember, saving money on your wedding doesn’t have to cost you added time or stress.

Need advice on getting a wedding loan?

We know that planning a wedding takes time.

That’s why we offer loan decisions in just 3 hours. So you can get on with the important stuff.

Speak to a member of our AIB consumer team today about applying for a personal loan for your big day.

You can also get in touch with us on Facebook or Twitter @AIBIreland.

Allied Irish Banks, p.l.c. is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland. Copyright Allied Irish Banks, p.l.c. 1995.