Save Money on your Wedding: Part II

In Part I of our budget wedding guide we showed you how to save money on outfits, wedding rings and invitations. Here, we give you the Savoo top tips on cutting back on the wedding reception- including food, drink and entertainment.

Food
Costs can quickly escalate when you start looking at serving three course dinners with numerous meal options. Cheat your way to budget food by having a morning ceremony- it is much easier to get away with just serving one course if your guests are attending a brunch or lunch!
Want an evening meal? Don’t give your guests a choice between meat, chicken or fish and just serve one dish with a vegetarian option (ask for veggie requests on the RSVPs). Wedding buffets are even cheaper since they cut down on the number of staff required to serve. Any catering schools nearby? See if the students cater private events for a lower fee than professionals.
More adventurous brides might want to consider asking family and friends to bring along food as your wedding present. This ‘potluck’ style of wedding will allow you to serve a menu of reasonably priced dishes that will be personal to you (just make sure you assign guests a category like main course or sides so you don’t end up with too much salad!).
Finally, skip the expensive tiered cake and serve cupcakes or a selection of your favourite deserts- unless you can rope a talented family member into making you a wedding cake.
Save money on food with: Waitrose | Tesco | Sainsbury’s
Drink
One of the easiest ways to save money on alcohol at your wedding is to limit the drinks to beer, wine and a signature cocktail. If you do insist on a champagne toast, substitute the expensive variety with Spanish Cava or Prosecco from Italy. Alternatively, skip the toast completely and just have bubbly behind the bar to people who ask for it.
Depending on your venue, you might have the opportunity to buy your own alcohol in bulk- a big money saver (especially if you return any bottles your guests don’t drink!)
Save money on drink with vouchers from: Laithwaites Wines | Tesco Wines | Majestic Wine
Venue
Let’s face it, some wedding venues have more hidden charges than Ryanair, so you should always look for a location that has extras built in. If you are on a tight budget with a small guest list don’t disregard chain hotels like Holiday Inn, Old English Inns and Britannia Hotels; these offer wedding packages for as little as £999 with everything included so you know exactly what you are paying from the word go. Alternative venue ideas include church halls, village halls and even restaurants.
Have your heart set on a particularly pricey stately home? Be flexible with the date and time of your wedding. Friday and Sundays can cut the costs by half, and weekdays are even cheaper. Choose winter instead of summer and you will be laughing your way to the bank.
Entertainment
Unless you have a handy friend who is a DJ or a musician, wedding entertainment costs can be high. One way to have a band and stick within your budget is to only hire live musicians for the dancing part of the reception and plug in your iPod for the rest of the evening- don’t forget to ask guests for their song requests. Find a venue with a house PA system to reduce the equipment the band needs to bring with them, and consider soloists rather than more expensive ensembles.
Unless you have a particular act in mind, start looking locally first; contact music colleges and enquire about students who would be willing to play for a reduced fee. This will be much cheaper than hiring professionals!
Photographer 
A popular way to cut back on photography costs is to skip the professional completely and ask your guests to send you copies of their photos and videos; encourage them to get snap happy by leaving disposable cameras on the reception tables. If professional photography is a must, then do your research first; instead of picking a well-known name, look for a talented but cheaper photographer who hasn’t made it big yet.
Save on Jessops disposable cameras with Savoo.

Wedding cars
Do you have a friend with an impressive sports car? Ask them to lend it to you for the day as a wedding present- they might even offer to drive! If this isn’t an option, hire a regular minicab for the day instead of a dedicated wedding car. Find a local company offering well-presented cabs, and ask if you can decorate it with your own flowers and white ribbon- and don’t forget the bubbly! If you live in London, check out the availability of white cabs instead of black ones for added impact on arrival.
Decorations
It might not be as cheap as doing it yourself, but hiring professionals for wedding flowers is without a doubt the easiest way to decorate the venue- check out our guide to saving money on flowers here.
Rather than forgoing favours completely, get crafty and make them yourself using chocolates from high street shops or products from the Valentine’s clearance section.
Get crafty with: Hotel Chocolat | Thorntons
How did you save money on your wedding reception? We would love to hear from you! And don’t forget to check out our guide to honeymooning on a budget.

Comments (0)

Leave A Comment

Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

SCRATCH DEBUG :: not set