Read these 46 Wedding Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Thrifty tips and hundreds of other topics.
If you're planning on wearing make-up for your wedding day, you could save some money by either applying it yourself, or having a family member or friend do it for you. If you've got the jitters, and you're really shaky, you'd be better off having a family member or a friend do it. It's just one less thing to worry about the day of the wedding.
I would really only suggest this if one of you is a frequent traveler and will know everything that is involved in planning this event, or if you're not traveling far away. If you're going somewhere far away, or a place that you've never been to, at least talk to a travel agent about it, or research it heavily, before you purchase the travel arrangements.
If you have a big family and/or group of friends that will all be getting married within a few years of each other, why not share wedding decorations. For instance, one person could buy a wishing well and lend it to the others in the group when they need it. You can do this with many wedding decorations. Try to get something that won't be out of style next week either.
If you want to hire a professional to handle the transportation, but you still want to save money, don't get a limo. Instead, you could get a nice, old car or a sedan or whatever else your provider might have. These days you see more and more different modes of transportation to and from weddings, so get creative and save money.
If you don't want to pay the expense of a professional videographer, and you don't want to have an acquaintance do it, have a semi-professional do it. Call a vocational school or college in the area to see if they would be willing to do this for you. Most would jump at the opportunity to get such a job, and to be able to add to their "portfolio".
So, do you have your typical sit down dinner, a buffet, or something in the middle? This will be a big factor in how much you save. Sit down meals cost more because they require X amount of wait staff per X amount of guests or tables - and that's where it gets expensive. You want a buffet, but you're not sure if it will go over well? Then try something in between. Plan carefully, because the catering is one of the biggest wedding expenses.
If you've never really traveled before, you may want to consider going through a travel agent - especially if you will be going out of the country. If you're going to a resort like Sandals or Beaches, you might want to go to one of their certified travel agents. The certified travel agents are able to tell you all sorts of things about a resort that you won't find in a brochure, because they've been there before. So, you'll want to weigh your options to help you make this decision.
Getting your name changed from your maiden name to your married name is a very time-consuming project that takes a lot of time, patience and organization. To help you get through this, there is a kit that you can purchase. All kits are personalized to the bride's state, so that she will have all of the proper documents. This is definitely worth the small investment.
Official New Bride Name Change Kit
One thing that you both need to decide is whether you want to have a professional photographer take the pictures at your wedding. If you decide not to, then you need to start planning on who will do it, which photos you want taken, and so on. If you decide to hire a professional, you can still save money by limiting the number of pictures that he/she takes, as well as the number of locations that the pictures are taken at. For instance, it will cost more for the photographer to take pictures at your mother's, the church, a special location, the church and the reception.
If you're having an informal wedding, you can save on invitations. For instance, you could go without invitations, and invite people through phone calls, e-mails and regular mail. If you still want invitations, you could buy packs of pre-made invitations (such as you would for a birthday party) and use those instead of buying the expensive, fancy ones.
If you get married around Easter, there is likely to already be flowers at the church. Flowers such as tulips and lilies are more likely than others. Check with the church before you spend money on more flowers. Also, check to see if this works around other holidays.
Do you have a friend or a relative that's always taping things, and really good at it? If so, you may want to ask him or her if they'd be willing to videotape your wedding. If you go this route, please make sure that you explain exactly what you want and/or don't want. Also, if you will be doing something out-of-the-ordinary at the ceremony or the reception, make sure that your videographer knows about it, and that you want it taped.
You can limit the number of photos a professional needs to take by having disposable cameras at the reception. Place them at all of the tables, and make sure that you leave instructions and/or have the DJ give instructions. You may want to ask some people to take certain photos, and you may request that guests take candid shots. Also, know which shots the photographer plans on taking, so that they aren't duplicated.
Do you know someone that is good at taking pictures, that you feel confident that he/she would do a good job? If so, ask him/her to do it for you. Depending on your relationship with this individual, you might not even have to pay for the services. Make sure that before the day of the wedding that you sit down with him/her to discuss which photos are the most important for them to take. If you'll be doing something out-of-the-ordinary during the ceremony or the reception, and want it photographed, make sure that you fill in the person so that he/she will be ready.
Buffets are gaining more and more popularity with brides and grooms, as well as their guests. For the brides and grooms, a buffet is less expensive and a great way to be able to please more guests with food options. The guests like it because they get options, instead of chicken. If you have frail guests, please be aware of that, and have someone available to assist them.
To save money on invitations, you may want to make your own. Most craft and stationary stores sell blank packs of invitations that you can put through your computer. Before you buy the entire amount that you need, you may want to buy only one pack first, to make sure that they go through your printer well. Sometimes, invitations that have raised borders and/or graphics, will have trouble going through some printers. If it doesn't work well through yours, try someone else's.
Instead of having a professional take the pictures, or an acquaintance, why not get a semi-professional? There is probably a vocational school or college in your area that could do this for you. They would be more than grateful to have the opportunity for such a job, and to be able to add to their portfolio. Just make sure that you're comfortable with the person you choose, and you should be fine.
Do you want to have a thrifty honeymoon, or do you want to splurge, or find something in the middle? That is the first thing that you need to decide, before you even think about a destination. If you've never really gone anywhere before, you might want to splurge. If you're planning on waiting for your first anniversary to take a big honeymoon, then you may want to be thrifty or semi-thrifty for this one. Knowing this will help you make a decision.
When you book your wedding, see if there is another wedding right before and/or after it. If so, see if they will let you contact the other wedding party to see if they would like to go in together on the cost of the flowers that you use at the church and have the flowers be available for both weddings.
So, you're pondering about whether you should go tanning prior to your wedding day. Tanning is not healthy, but neither is a bad sun burn in the tropics. So, if you're going somewhere tropical, you may want to consider getting a starter tan, so that you hopefully don't burn while you're on your honeymoon. Also, if you burn easily, you may want to consider it as well. If you've never tanned, talk to a trusted friend or family member that has, to get information before you go tanning.
Make your own flowers for your wedding. From bouquets to corsages, and centerpieces to big arrangements you can save a lot of money by doing it yourself. You can used dried flowers or silk flowers from a craft store, or pick your own wild flowers. Be as creative as you want by adding ribbon, fabric, bows and other things to make your masterpiece an original.
So, you've decided that you'd really like to have a Jack-n-Jill party, but your not sure how to do it without breaking the bank. Well, instead of renting a hall and getting a caterer, why not have a night out on the town instead? Pick a restaurant that you and your fiancee' like to go to and make reservations. Then go play pool, go dancing, go bowling, or whatever it is that you and your fiancee' like to do. This way, everyone gets to go out and have fun, and the financial burden isn't left to a select few because everyone pays their own way.
If you or someone that you know has a nice vehicle that you would like to use, why not go ahead and use it! It would be wise to figure out who is going to be in charge of driving before you ask to borrow a vehicle, so that the owner doesn't assume that you mean that he/she would be the one doing the driving. If you're going to use your own vehicle, it would be wise to find someone else, probably not a relative, to drive it for you.
Contrary to popular belief, more and more couples are opting to not provide a bottle of champagne at the tables. Other options are the fake champagne or nothing at all. The guests can still toast the bride and groom with their own drink instead of a champagne toast.