Wedding Budget Etiquette: The Do’s and the Don’ts

Wedding Budget Etiquette: The Do’s and the Don’ts

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In the whirlwind of planning a wedding there is a lot of fun stuff. Choosing a venue, picking a delicious menu, coming up with styling ideas, decisions around entertainment. All lots of fun. It’s kind of like planning a big party, yes?

And then there’s the wedding budget. And this tends to be not so fun. Working out who is paying for what, managing the amount you have to spend. Well that just sounds like……work!

It’s a tricky area and will depend on your financial situation, if it’s a first or second marriage and if your parents are getting involved.

So here is some advice from us on how to manage your suppliers, your budget and your family’s involvement for smooth fiscal sailing.

FIRST STEPS

When creating a budget for the wedding, do the following first:

  • Consider whether parents are contributing. Be clear with asking them how much or what they’re paying for so there is no misunderstandings down the track
  • Get at least three quotes for each area of the wedding – venues, entertainment, flowers etc. and be sure to compare them
  • Negotiate with suppliers
  • Be mindful of everybody’s financial situations – your own and parents
  • Do not go into bad debt and stay away from credit cards
  • Use open communication. Putting your head in the sand is not a strategy

WHO PAYS FOR WHAT

As for who pays for what, some families follow the traditional model while other families take a more modern approach. Here is a guide for you.

TRADITIONAL

The Bride

  • The groom’s wedding ring
  • A gift for the groom and her attendants

The Groom

  • The bride’s wedding ring
  • A gift for the bride and groomsmen
  • All flowers for the ceremony
  • Church fees, marriage celebrant fees or donations
  • Cars and transport for wedding party
  • Honeymoon

The Bride’s family

  • Bridal gown
  • Reception
  • Photographer, videographer and newspaper announcements
  • Wedding cake
  • Invitations and place cards
  • Flowers at the reception
  • Wedding gift for the bride and groom

The Groom’s family

  • Wedding gift for the bride and groom
  • May choose to make a contribution towards the celebrations

The Wedding Party

  • Bridesmaids/groomsmen expected to pay for their own attire
  • Hen’s night hosted by maid of honour
  • Bucks night hosted by best man

 MODERN

The Bride and Groom

  • The bulk of the expenses are taken by the bride and groom or as agreed by the families

The Bride’s family

  • Food an venue hire for reception
  • Flowers for reception
  • Any further expenses as agreed

The Groom’s family

  • Wedding gift for the bride and groom
  • Beverages for the reception
  • Any further expenses as agreed

The Wedding Party

  • Bridesmaids/groomsmen expected to pay for their own attire
  • Hen’s night hosted by maid of honour
  • Bucks night hosted by best man

So as you can see it can be a bit of a tangled web. But only as tangled as you decide to weave it.

Clear communication will keep things clarified and understood. And spreadsheets………LOTS of spreadsheet action keeping all expenses accounted for.

This will stop any budget blowouts and keep family friction to a minimum so you can get married in peace.

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