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How much is your wedding costing you?

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ugh... so i've completely lost it... i'm nearing $10,000 just for dresses (+alterations) and accessories alone.


why do weddings have to be so expensive? budget is so depressing. and it only gets more expensive when you start a family. what the heck am i going to do!

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I hear you! Speaking of dresses - I havent even FOUND mine yet - and my wedding is May 23. I am trying not to stress out, but the time is going by really fast!!!!! Am I crazy for waiting this long to find one??

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Originally Posted by Lenchika View Post
I did the rough budget by researching this site a lot LOL and was hoping to spend around 7.5K, that was about 2 months ago. After more thoughts, things add up... we're up to ~10K of expected spendings, and only 1 week at RPLA in Cancun. We're having a very small wedding, just my parents and my sister and hubby. We're not paying for anyone's airfare...or dresses or anything else.
I cannot fathom how you ladies are only spending around 5-8K! Good for you! Looking for tips from the frugalminded :)
Not sure where I can cut corners...Here's our breakdown:
lodging & airfare3500 (just a regular room)
ceremony1000 (least expensive at hotel)
photography 1000
bouqet for bride, boutineer for groom50
additional flowers (rose petals, girl bouquet) 50
decorations 600 (that's for the bamboo arch that I cannot live w/o) :)
dress 500 - looooooove it, haven't done any alterations yet.
music500 (may cut that out - it was for a guitar player - but may go with just CD music)
gifts (welcome basket)100

Any ideas where to cut costs/corners?
I'm staying at the same place next September. I think you did good to get lodging and airfare for $3500! I did pay a bit more to have oceanfront view for my room, but my room costs $3600 for 10 days plus $750 for airfare for me and my fiance. I think your budget looks very reasonable. The only thing I'm doing differently is having someone in my family bring a video camera rather than paying someone else. My total will probably be around $10,000 when its all over. I honestly think that is pretty good and for me, that is spread out over the next year so its definitely doable!

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We've set a budget of $10,000 (without any parental help), and I have an additional $2000 saved to just go all out in Cabo (swim with the dolphins, , excursions, massages, etc)! Very realistic! (My JCrew wedding dress was just bought new with tags from ebay for $50!! ..saved over $300 there!)

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Originally Posted by latown9958 View Post
I hear you! Speaking of dresses - I havent even FOUND mine yet - and my wedding is May 23. I am trying not to stress out, but the time is going by really fast!!!!! Am I crazy for waiting this long to find one??
hurry up and find one already! you still have 4 months so that gives you a little bit of time to rush order your gown. why don't you dedicate one weekend dress shopping? give yourself a deadline date of when to order your dress. =) good luck and HAVE FUN!

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wow... umm, how did this thread come back the whole way from 2008?!


anyhow, budgeting is near and dear to my heart (I work as a pricing manager), and I have built excel file upon excel file with all the potential costs laid out. for those still in the planning stages, what I did was assemble a lower-end wedding budget and then a higher-end, as if money wasn't a factor and I was going to splurge on everything (within reason, I'm still a pretty frugal person and wouldn't get a dress above, say, $2K regardless ; ).


we are really fortunate in that my parents are giving us $5,000. they gave my brother the same amount to use for his honeymoon (his wife's parents paid for the wedding), so that's what I'm considering spending it on. the money will pay for the following for myself and my FI:


* plane tickets (Austin to Cancun ~$450 ea)

* 7 - 8 nights at the Royal Playa del Carmen (all-inclusive ~$325/nt)

* ~$1K in spending cash for activities (scuba diving, etc) and resort extras like massages and dinner on the beach, airport transfers, etc


above that, we are planning to spend roughly $7,500 on the remainder of the wedding, but the final price tag will be dictated by the number of guests. if we have 25 - 30 people coming, I'd like to spring for the extras like fire dancers. oh, and there are some things I haven't factored in - his ring, airport parking, petsitting, etc. I figure those are more incidentals that we'll work into our daily budget - I see the wedding costs as what we'll pay to the coordinator when it's all said and done with.


some things we're considering to save money are:


* going with a photog studio that's trained by del sol (la luna - freakin AWESOME!). it's sort of like hiring a photog's assistant, and although it's less than half the cost of del sol, it's still the largest singular expense at $2,000

* getting legally married in the states. between the blood tests, translation, documentation, need to arrive earlier than we'd planned, hiriing someone to perform the ceremony ($500 for like 20 MINS SERIOUSLY!??!) and not getting to recite anything but their script, this move will save us $750+ and we'll have our friend read the vows we write


in the end, I think it's all about what's important to you. I knew that I'd rather spend $350 on a dress than $1,350, even though it may not be as formal and intricate because I'd only have the chance to wear it for a few hours. but some people really do focus on that piece and spend there only to cut back in different areas. I was astounded when my brother's wedding cost in excess of $13,000 for one evening - at least this way, we'll get an entire VACATION with people, not just a snippet of conversation in a rushed few minutes. that was vastly more important to me, even if it meant I wouldn't get to see everyone (because the reality is that at age 31, our friends/family are so spread out that most people would have had to travel in a significant way even if we had the wedding in our hometown).


if family make up the majority of the guest list, there's no reason to go nuts with the spending 'cause, hey, they love you regardless. ; ) now if we get a lot of friends, I'll be tempted to up the ante and make it more of a show. but I have to keep in mind we're in a fantastic resort, so everything else is icing. I think a destination wedding is sooooo much better than an empty hotel ballroom you have to fill and light and provide food and entertainment etc etc etc. whereas the ocean sort of stands on its own. ; ) 


I'm gonna wrap it up now, but hopefully this helps. good luck with planning!!


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We budgeted for $10,000 CAD for DW.  This is to inlclude everything; from invitations to photographers.  We almost blew the budget out the window, but our travel packages dropped in prices, I found a dress for half of what I budgeted.  What I found to add to the cost is the little things. As you don't purchase them all at ones, you tend to 'dismiss' the cost a bit, until you add the $6.49 here and $5.29 there.  It doesn't seem much at the time of purchase, but at the end, the $5 add up quickly.  Our photographer and reception/extra people/dj fees are the main spending.

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I am getting married 1 week from today!!!  My original budget was set around $15,000 -- for both the DW AND AHR -- and we ended up around $17,000.  I actually created a spreadsheet in Excel to make sure I kept track of everything, and am very happy to say that we will be breaking even from saving so much and will not be in ANY wedding debt when we return!!!!  That was my #1 goal, so I'm happy!


For a breakdown..


AHR -- $8,500

DW -- $6,000 (includes roundtrip airfare, 9 night stay, gifts, photography and wedding extras)

Attire -- $2,600 (includes wedding dress, TTD, shoes, accessories and all of groom's attire)

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