It’s common knowledge that weddings today cost a pretty penny – averaging a little over $25,000. Tack on five grand for the honeymoon, and you're looking at a final price tag equivalent to another year's worth of college. To call marriage a life-changing event would be an understatement.
But don't run away from the altar just yet. While a wedding may be one of the costliest life events for some, it doesn't have to drain your savings, too. You're in college, after all — let's not tack another massive expense onto your list of worries.
If you're like most people, you likely don't have $25,000 collecting dust in your savings. In fact, you might not even have a fraction of that amount to spend. Want to know the best part about being a college student? You learn how to get the most out of every dollar.
If you're ready to tie the knot with your special someone, go for it! Having a wedding isn't about how much you spend — it's about creating memories with your closest friends, family, and loved ones as you celebrate the new life journey ahead.
Are you ready to throw the wedding of a lifetime on a college budget? Here are five simple ways to make walking down the aisle in college into a fun and affordable event.
Round Up Your Campus Friends
The beauty of planning a wedding in college is having the added convenience of being in contact with all of your closest campus friends. Inviting past roommates and college buddies can be difficult after graduating, especially when everyone returns to their hometowns or moves to another state for a new line of work. When you plan a wedding in college, you have all your friends readily available — which makes enlisting a few sets of helping hands so much more convenient!
Campuses are overflowing with personalities, so why not take advantage of it? Getting acquainted with that excellent guitar player in your music class could easily save you thousands of dollars on music and entertainment at your wedding.
Enlist the help of creative family and friends who can help provide you with different photography services, entertainment, and musical performances for discounted prices or free.
Skip the Fancier Details
Let's face it — most of your guests won’t care if you forgo adding caviar to your dinner reception's menu. In fact, we're betting most of your college friends will thank you for choosing a tastier alternative instead.
While serving extravagant foods is nice on paper, luxury meals are hardly worth the added price you’ll need for your wedding venue. Make a list of your favorite budget-friendly meals instead. Enlist the help of your family’s best cooks and cut the cost of your wedding drastically.
If you still would prefer to have something catered – we get it. Consider a buffet over a plated and served meal. Though considered “tacky” by someone like your Great Aunt Tilly – buffets are almost always more affordable, can provide a greater variety to your guests, and your hungry guests will be able to enjoy their food significantly faster than a formal plated meal.
Swap out a Three-Tiered Cake for a Candy Bar
Did you know the average price of a wedding cake can run as high as $1,500, not including taxes? And who really enjoys fondant anyway? No thank you!
A candy bar is the ideal dessert option for any wedding reception because it allows your guests to choose their desired sweets based on their taste preference, can act as a wedding favor, and will save you loads of cash. Plus – they are super fun! Choose from an array of chocolates, mints and candy melts for fruit-dipping. Candy bars conveniently provide the perfect Instagram-worthy set-ups for a bonus. A chocolate cake may be delicious, but a table full of your favorite sweets is even better.
Remember Something Borrowed Can be Better than Something New
One of the best ways to plan a fulfilling wedding is to break all the rules and release the pressure of upholding expectations in the process. That means you don't have to wear all white or adorn yourself in the most expensive jewelry. You can make use of the very accessories lining your own — and your loved ones’ — closets instead!
Consider using a dress your family has passed down from generation to generation. You'll not only have a unique outfit, but it will also have an added value of sentiment relative to you. The same rule applies to wedding bands. If there are heirlooms or wedding accessories your family has saved for this moment, why not take advantage and save some money while creating beautiful memories?
Be Your Own Wedding Designer
Hiring a wedding planner can be expensive. In fact, it can be among the top costs at your wedding. You already have a vision in your head of how you want this eventful night to unfold, so why not put it into practice by ensuring no detail is skipped or misunderstood? Enlist a trusted friend or two to help when you’re feeling stressed – but foregoing a professional planner can save you some serious cash.
There’s never a better time to get married than when you most feel like proclaiming your everlasting love. If you’re in college, then so be it! There is no correlation between the amount of money you spend and the success of a picture-perfect day.
Remember, it doesn't cost a single penny to create the memories that will last you a lifetime.