Getting married

Paying for your wedding

Paying for your wedding

The information in this guide was last updated on 21/12/2015

Saving money on wedding costs

We know weddings can be expensive, but with a bit of careful planning and being smart about your choices you can save a lot of money. Here are some things to think about:

  • Venue and catering costs can mount up quickly, especially if the venue has special wedding packages and rates. Consider whether you need a car to transport you, or if you can reduce catering costs by asking family and friends to help prepare food the day before. Could you hold a party at home, at a local community hall or hire a function room in a pub for your celebration?
  • The wedding date you choose can also impact on costs. Weekend weddings tend to be more expensive, as do dates in the summer months.
  • Wedding rings, suits and wedding dresses can cost thousands, but there are cheaper alternatives too. A simple gold wedding band can cost less than £100, and several high street clothing shops sell off-the-peg wedding dresses and formal clothing. You could also try charity shops and second hand clothing shops for more unique outfits.

Wedding insurance

Because a wedding can be a big undertaking, you can buy an insurance policy that will protect your investment in your big day. Wedding insurance policies can protect you against cancellation costs, cover for the reception venue on the day, clothing, rings, supplier deposits and public liability.

When booking services and buying things for the wedding, using a credit card can also give some extra protection- eg: if the company you purchase goods from goes under.

The wedding list

In the past, wedding lists were a way for wedding guests to help a new couple set up home for the first time. The list would be held by a department store and would include household items guests could buy for the couple.

These days it’s more common for couples to live together before marrying or starting a civil partnership, so the wedding list may not be the most helpful way for guests to contribute. As an alternative, you could ask guests to add their gift amount to a honeymoon fund or make a donation to your favourite charity.

Your honeymoon

Traditionally, couples jet off on honeymoon directly after the wedding ceremony, but many couples are now choosing to make the most of their honeymoon budgets by travelling at off-peak times or out of season. Holidays are expensive, so looking at creative ways to plan your honeymoon could leave you with more cash spare for other things.

Wedding extras

You should also think about whether you want to pay for flowers, a professional photographer, bridal hair and makeup, a DJ or a toastmaster. All these can be done with the help of family and friends at little or no cost, but you may want to splash out on one or all of them, so you need to work this into your budget.

Benefits, tax and pensions