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Rule For Budgeting Non Hotel Beach Garden Weddings


My 70 on 7 Rule

I want to let brides know of a simple rule I use to allocate the funds for an independent garden wedding that is not in an all-inclusive hotel. I recommend 70% of the budget must go to 7 key factors. This is why I call this the 70 on 7 rule. The 7 unavoidable factors for any custom wedding are:

  • Venue - Independent venues have different styles or regulations, check with them for details.
  • Coordination and Staff - This includes decorator, full coordination, set/up, take/down, clean/up, hostess...
  • Decorations - This includes lamps, cushions, colors, accents, floating candles, tiki torches....
  • Catering - 3 or 4 course dinner, desserts, salads, tables, chairs, dinnerware, glassware, linens...
  • Open Bar - Full, international brands, 5 or 8 hours, special margarita bar....
  • DJ and Dance Floor - DJ with playlist, dance floor can be wood, plastic covering or lighted or with light shows and video screens...
  • Ceremony - Minister or judge or both, decorated arch, chairs, table for ceremony...

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All else can be added if desired or if the budget allows for it. However, these 7 items are essencial for a great wedding day and are practically unavoidable, so focus on these first. That's why I suggest 70% of the budget be allocated for these items and the 30% left over can go to other important factors such as entertainment, transportation, more decorations, souvenirs, photographer and video, late night taco bar, more flowers, rehearsal dinner, tours, etc.


There are so many factors that can change your expenses that it is impossible to have one size fits all budgets. At least in our case since all our weddings are custom made. Certain factors may repeat themselves often which is why the 7 core principles are the same but the devil (cost increase) is in the details as they say. There are tables that may cost 8 dollars to rent and tables that cost 400 dollars, so that alone can change your budget from 40 dollars to 2,000 dollars if 5 table are needed! That is the difference between a 10,000 dollar wedding and a 12,000 dollar wedding or a 20% increase.


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So always have an idea of where you want to be in your budget plan and let the coordinator know. They should accomodate any budget you have. It is a matter of finding the right vendors and quality for you. Just because it is low budget it does not have to be bad quality. Conversely, expensive does not guarantee quality either. So choose wisely. I hope this helps. Buena Suerte!


Be well and stay in love,



Martoca Beach Garden

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