We got some tips from one bride-to-be who's saved an estimated €11,000 on her wedding.
There’s no denying that weddings are a costly business. In fact a recent poll estimated the average cost of an Irish wedding at €22, 531.
Not so cheap, huh?
But we spoke to one bride who’s saved herself an absolute packet on her upcoming nuptials. Gillian, 36, whose wedding is in March tells us that she’s spent just under €2,000 on her wedding so far and estimates that she’ll spend roughly €11,000 in total before the big day, exactly half the national average; a figure she has sussed thanks to her super organised wedding planning spreadsheets.
So what’s her secret? Gillian tells us how she’s made some major savings.
“I don’t feel that I have to keep up with anyone else or buy into all the trends and I suppose that’s one way we’ve kept the costs down,” Gillian explains. Extras like Pinterest-inspired table settings, photo booths and Pick ‘n’ Mix stands really do add up. Instead “spend time on the details people will remember,” says Gillian. “The dress, the food and the dancing!”
“Hotels with packages are great, they have dedicated suppliers who provide the same service for a reduced cost,” explains Gillian. “For example, our photographer is in our package for a cost of €1000, but if we’d booked her separately it would have cost €1300. Everyone remembers the meal and the party so go for somewhere with a good rep for food and pick a good band.” Enlisting the help of friends can help too. “Our band is a friend of a friend,” says Gillian. “So again we’ve saved money as this has come at a reduced price as part of a present to us.”
Gillian’s using family cars for transportation on her big day. “There’s no cost, apart from a few euros to add a driver onto the insurance and buy a roll of ribbon,” she explains. Got a friend or relative who has some shiny new wheels they wouldn’t mind loaning out for the day? Ask them, with car hire prices starting at around €350 per vehicle you’ll knock a substantial amount of your wedding day spend.
“I haven’t felt that I have to go to a bridal shop to get my dresses. Why should I not get them from a department store where I can buy them straight away, instead of having to pay them off for years to come?” Gillian asks. With the average bridal-store bought wedding dress swallowing up a substantial amount of the big day budget and costing around €1500, we reckon she has a point. We recommend Debenhams, Monsoon and Asos for their affordable bridal ranges.
Do you really need to have everything for keeps? “We had the option to add the mens suits into our package but we chose not to. Instead we’re hiring the suits,” Gillian explains. “If the men want to buy them then they can put the extra few euros to it themselves.” Can’t afford to buy something you want for the big day? See if you can opt for rental.
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