Lexington can tell you that between the planner, venue, food, flowers, cake, dress, drinks, photographer, videographer, invitations, programs, and all the rest, you’re likely to be hearing a lot of this: Ka-ching! Ka-ching!
More than 10 billion is spent on weddings in the UK each year. According to www.hitched.co.uk , the average wedding has about 133 to 143 guests and costs more than £16,000, not including the honeymoon. The good news is the average cost of a wedding in 2011 was less than the average cost in 2007. The bad news is that, according to CostofWedding.com, the cost of any wedding could increase by 50 to 100 percent if the planners choose designer labels, popular event locations, custom products and services, or if they invite significantly more guests.
Here are a few tips from Lexington that may help ensure wedding costs don’t spiral out of control:
- Establish a budget. Set a budget for the wedding, but make sure you build in a cushion of 10 to 15 percent for cost overruns, just as you would if you were extending your home.
- Understand venue and reception costs. When negotiating the cost of your reception, it’s important to ask for the per person cost, all-inclusive. If you’re given an all-inclusive price and you find the words ‘additional costs may be incurred’ or ‘plus the cost of setup and delivery’ in your final contract, ask what those costs are, specifically, and be prepared to negotiate.
- Make smart drink choices. The drinks served at the reception often are a significant expense. Many venues charge for every bottle opened. To save on the cost, you could opt to serve beer, wine, and champagne for toasts. Alternatively, you could offer signature cocktails that require a single type of liquor, which can help limit the number of bottles opened.
After evaluating costs, Lexington think you may decide that the best option is for the happy couple to elope, marry in an exotic location, and celebrate with a big party when they return. If that’s not an option, make sure to take advantage of the plentiful online resources available.