Your budget is one of the FIRST things that you will sit down and discuss when planning your wedding.

But whether your budget is big or small, it doesn’t mean you can’t have the wedding of your dreams. All it means is that you have to PRIORITIZE what’s most important to you.

Do you want your wedding to be a huge party with your guests laughing and dancing all night? You may want to prioritize an open bar.

Do you want to relive the day over and over for the rest of your life? Prioritize a wedding photographer who can capture your memories in the style and tone that you imagine them!

Do you envision a cliffside wedding with only your closest family and friends? Prioritize the venue and location!

Mount St. Joseph University photos with colorful flowers and smiling wedding couple

No matter what you decide, keep in mind these 3 things that could affect your wedding budget and add to your wedding planning stress:

  1. WHERE you tie the knot. Your wedding location will play a leading role in the creation of your budget. Venues that are situated in popular areas will generally charge more than smaller venues outside of main cities. Venues also have different packages and policies that you’ll need to consider. For example, some venues might require you to use their vendors, some of which might not fit in with your budget. A lot of venues also have minimum catering requirements that may go beyond your guest list. It’s important to look at average costs of areas and venues before you make a final decision on where you want to get married. Check out my favorite venues!
  2. WHEN you say “I do”. Wedding seasons make a big difference to costs. Planning to get married on a Saturday in the summer? Chances are you’re going to end up paying a lot more for your wedding. Look at your budget and how it fits in with the venue and location you have in mind and whether you can move your wedding to another season or day of the week to save on costs.
  3. WHO you invite. This is one area that can very easily get out of control (and where your parents are going to have LOTS of opinions). Your guests are going to take up a large portion of your budget so it LITERALLY pays to be sensible about who you’re inviting. Most venues will charge you for everything from drinks and food to the chair your guest will be sitting on so think twice about inviting your second cousin who you haven’t seen in 2 years. Agree on how many guests you want to invite and stick to it.

Listen, your wedding is going to be an AMAZING DAY! But to stick to your budget and avoid debt when you get back from the honeymoon, do yourself a favor and carefully plan your finances before you even begin planning your wedding, that way you don’t get your heart set on wedding elements above your budget. It’ll still be beautiful, you’ll still marry your best friend, and life will still be completely amazing!

Colorful flowers, yellow rose, beautiful engagement ring

PRO TIP: A wedding planner can offer SO MUCH help in keeping the budget on track! I absolutely love and recommend the folks over at Magical Moments Event Planning!