Best Cheap Wedding Ideas
Cheap wedding ideas will not make your wedding tacky or cheap-looking.
You can use these ideas to cut unnecessary wedding expenses, which can quickly creep up if you are not careful.
Weddings are not cheap.
Unless you’re Meghan Markle and marrying into the royal family, you will more than likely have to put a budget on your wedding.
We will show you how to plan a great wedding if you are looking for cheap wedding ideas that are not too tacky.
Whether that budget is $2,000 or $50,000 is completely up to you, but if you want to make your money go further, read on for our many ways to stretch your wedding budget.
I am so excited to share a few inexpensive wedding ideas you can use to plan your wedding.
To plan a wedding on a budget, you need to learn how to negotiate, be flexible and think outside the box.
I am not going to lie, even small weddings can cost an arm and a leg without proper planning.
An expensive wedding can lead you to start your marriage off in debt which is not ideal either.
If you are looking for solid ways to have a cheap wedding, this post should help you with some great ideas.
If you are reading this post, we are going to help with the following:
How to plan a wedding on a small budget
How to plan a cheap wedding that is still classy
Budget wedding ideas worth implementing
The first step is learning how to create a budget that works for you.
No two weddings are the same.
Go ahead and set a realistic wedding budget that you are comfortable with and make your wedding fit those requirements.
And if you have to leave certain things out, then do that.
Grab yourself this cute rainbow budget planner to start planning your budget.
So how can you stretch your wedding budget, and what are our best cheap wedding ideas?
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Planning a cheap wedding
Having a cheap wedding is an excellent way to save money that you can put towards other things such as a house or a savings account.
You don’t have to use every penny you have on a wedding that will only last one day.
But you also don’t want to have regrets on the one day that will mean so much to you.
So what is a reasonable budget for a wedding?
For a 100-person wedding, you can expect to spend approximately $19,000 (including the ceremony and reception)!
This depends on where you are, and this is on average.
This is still expensive for some couples.
That is why we have come up with creative cheap wedding ideas you can use to try to save more money.
How do you plan a wedding on a low budget?
Keep reading below for our awesome wedding on-budget ideas.
We are sharing everything you need to know about how to plan a cheap wedding.
Planning a cheap wedding will require a lot of creativity from you.
What are you willing to do to save money?
1. Have a very long Engagement
If you are on a tight budget and truly want to save money, I suggest stretching out your engagement.
Having a long engagement before your wedding is a really good way of being able to not only stretch your budget but expand it as well.
This way, you will have a longer time to save money to pay for all your wedding expenses.
Instead of planning the wedding in one year, plan a year wedding.
I also suggest grabbing the money-saving challenges to save for your wedding!
If you are looking for cheap wedding ideas but still want an elegant wedding, get more time to save more.
You can also look around for the best deals without too much pressure and negotiate the best prices when your wedding is a couple of years away.
2. Change your wedding date
Picking an off-peak date for your wedding is crucial if you want a cheap wedding.
If you are looking for cheap wedding ideas that work, please understand you might have to sacrifice a few things to get just that.
You can get the best deals from venues and other wedding essentials and at the same time make your wedding different from everyone else’s by having less traditional decor that fits into the offseason you have chosen.
Wedding venues are willing to give you a good rate for booking a wedding on dates they usually do not book.
I got married on a Sunday and paid 50% off the rates that most pay on a Friday or Sunday.
You just need to think outside the box to find more cheap wedding ideas that could save you thousands of dollars.
Saturdays in the summer are extremely popular, which means the most expensive time to get married.
Consider getting married on Fridays, Sundays, or even weekdays.
And if you can get married in winter, you will save even more.
3. Cheap Weddings Require Flexibility
Planning a wedding on a small budget requires a lot of flexibility.
Don’t be set in stone with all your plans if you are searching for cheap wedding ideas.
As I mentioned above, the more flexible you are, the better your chances of scoring some awesome wedding deals!
It’s good to give your wedding vendors some wiggle room if you’re looking for the best prices.
This way, they can work with you to meet your budget.
Look at a few options for flower arrangements or even 2 or 3 different dates for your venue location.
Here are a few ways you can save money for your wedding if you are flexible:
- Get married during the week
- Get married during the day (think wedding brunch)
- Alternate expensive centrepieces with non-expensive pieces
- Get off-the-rack wedding dresses
- Skip the wedding veil
These classy but cheap wedding ideas can save you thousands of dollars easily.
4. Don’t Travel
Couples considering planning a cheap wedding should avoid things that could add more to their overall costs.
Think about having your ceremony and reception in a dual-purpose venue.
If you are not too fussed about the actual ceremony location, i.e. a church setting, you can stand to save a bundle on travel costs by not having to transport yourself and your guests to the second reception venue.
Limos can be expensive.
I am not saying skip the limo, but you can book it for fewer hours instead of booking it for most of the day.
Your wedding ceremony and reception allow a much more fluid rhythm to your big day.
5. Cheap wedding venue ideas
Consider looking into cheap wedding venues.
As I mentioned, a lot goes into planning a wedding, but one of the most important steps is setting a budget and looking for affordable alternatives to save money.
And looking into alternative affordable wedding venues might save you thousands of dollars in the long run.
City-run spaces, public gardens, art venues and restaurants can be great locations for weddings and receptions.
If you are looking to save money on your venue, consider these affordable wedding venue alternatives:
- Historic sites
- Park or beach
- National park
Read this post to find more unconventional and alternative wedding venues.
And don’t forget to google cheap venues to get married in your area.
I am sure a lot of amazing options will come up.
The more you spend time researching, the more your cheap wedding ideas will happen.
6. Wedding reception food ideas on a budget
Food and alcohol are other places where couples tend to spend a lot of money.
Your wedding guests must be well fed for your big day.
Depending on where you are getting married, you may have no choice but to use their catering.
If possible, try to negotiate your wedding foods and drinks.
This will allow you to save money.
Your food wedding budget takes up to 40% of your overall budget.
And if you can find a location that allows you to bring your catering, here is where you can attempt to save money.
Lookup cheap wedding food ideas that will allow you to stick within your budget.
Think things like:
- Food trucks
- Heavy Appetizers
- Cake & Punch
- Mini Food Stations
Read this for more cheap wedding food options!
It’s packed with amazing cheap wedding reception food ideas that will help you save money.
7. Consider All-inclusive Wedding
Many places offer all-inclusive package deals where everything like flowers, live band/DJ, catering, and photography are all included in one deal.
Now, these can save you a lot of stress and potentially money.
Booking vendors individually can cost a lot more.
If you can get a venue that offers all-inclusive wedding services, or they can package a few things together, you can potentially save a lot of money.
Let’s say the venue cannot off all-inclusive but can do a few things such as:
- In house DJ
- Wedding decorations
- Ceremony locations
- Even hotel rooms (bridal suites are usually included)
Why not get that package and add on to it?
But do some research before jumping in with both feet to ensure you get the best deal possible.
8. DIY Your Wedding for Cheap
You will find plenty of wedding ideas on a budget on the internet.
If you’re a Pinterest lover, you probably have already mapped out exactly what you want to DIY for your wedding.
And it’s a great way to save a few pennies and stretch your wedding budget.
DIY is ideal for those looking for cheap wedding ideas.
Wedding planning on a budget is possible, especially if you can truly be creative.
Things like decorations, invitations, and favours can all be DIY’d at a fraction of the cost of buying ready-made.
Make sure your DIY project will not cost you more than you budgeted.
I recommend you itemize the cost of material, including your time, and tally everything.
Then compare the cost to ensure it’s not costing you more to DIY it.
- 5 DIY Homemade wedding decorations for couples on a Budget
- 6 Unique, beautiful DIY Wedding receptions ideas on a Budget
9. Save the trees
Avoid printing anything is a good way of helping your budget and the ecosystem.
So instead of having a printed menu for each table, have a large chalkboard with the available food options.
And if you have to print something, for example, your wedding invitations, take out some page inserts by having a website page with all the details that guests can visit.
Using a wedding website is also a great idea to share your wedding details so your wedding guests can easily reference the site should they need further answers.
I am all about saving the environment if I can.
Using a website might be a little difficult for the older generation.
They might still prepare the traditional wedding invitation.
But for couples looking for ways to save money and for ways how to plan a cheap wedding, cutting out print and postage might save you a lot of that cash.
10. Quality over quantity
As they say, less is more; it is a great idea to take those words of wisdom through to your wedding plans.
Planning a cheap wedding requires thinking as much as possible outside the box.
Whether cutting down on your wedding guest list or decorations, it can help stretch your budget without sacrificing the luxurious feel of a wedding.
If you are planning and looking for cheap wedding ideas, look at the number of guests you have.
Numbers do not lie.
The more people you have, the more money you will spend.
I had exactly 35 people on my wedding day, and it was the most intimate wedding and the best thing.
Don’t forget to grab this amazing rainbow wedding budget to document your wedding expenses.
11. Cheap happy hour wedding ideas
Everyone wants to celebrate with a drink, but this can affect your budget if you allow for an all-night free bar, so think about having a happy hour where your guests are welcome to drink but also helps keep the drinks tab under control.
These low-budget wedding ideas are meant to help you stay on a budget.
So instead of having an all-night open bar, you can have an hour of free drinks during the cocktail hour.
Serve wine during dinner (account for 2-3 hours of dinner service).
And then the bar can be paid for at the end of the night by the guests.
We have a few amazing ideas if you want delicious cocktail ideas to serve during your wedding.
Check out these unique, refreshing summer cocktail wedding ideas and these Halloween-themed cocktail ideas.
These affordable summer wedding appetizers are perfect for couples looking for cheap wedding ideas.
12. Hire rather than buy
There are plenty of inexpensive ways to get married, and if you look, you can find some great ways to cut costs.
For example, hiring instead of buying.
Hiring is a good way to keep costs down, and it can include everything from the wedding party dresses/suits to the decorations.
If you’re not likely to re-use or want to keep a part of your wedding, this is the best place to start looking to hire rather than buy.
Most brides feel they can purchase things and resale them after the wedding.
This could end up costing you more in the long run.
Look at this list of hidden costs you can incur when planning a wedding.
As you can see, it can add up quickly.
And there you have it, cheap wedding ideas you can use to save money today!
More cheap wedding hacks
Lucky for you, we want you to save money.
That is why we wanted to add more cheap wedding tips and ideas to help plan our wedding.
- Limit your guest list to have a cheap wedding
- Skip wedding favours and guest book
- Keep your open bar to limited drinks (skip expensive options)
- Keep the wedding accessories minimal
- Go secondhand – find a secondhand wedding dress if possible
- Out-of-season flowers cost more
- Consider a wedding cake alternative such as donuts or cake pops / you can also do a single-tier cake)
- Elope, instead of having a huge wedding
- DIY Wedding centrepieces don’t have to be cheap and unauthentic
- Check out non-bridal boutiques to find gorgeous dresses
- Plan a destination wedding on a small budget instead
If you are finding it hard to cut costs for your special day, I am hoping our cheap and easy wedding ideas are helpful, to say the least.
You can plan and enjoy the most amazing wedding on almost any budget.
You just need to be creative.
Weddings aren’t about flashing big bucks, they’re about joining families and celebrating with your loved ones.
So go ahead, and use our easy cheap wedding ideas to save money today!
- How To Pull Off A Frugal (Not Cheap) Wedding on A Budget
- How to have a Chic wedding on a Budget for less than $10,000
Pin this post to your wedding Planning board for inspiration.