Showing posts with label wedding budget. Show all posts
Showing posts with label wedding budget. Show all posts

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Using Credit Cards to Pay For Your Wedding and Honeymoon

For those of you that have read my post, Make Money With Credit Cards, you'll know I'm a big proponent of using credit cards.  As long as you use them wisely, you can actually make money off of them!  And paying for your wedding is no different.

We all know that a wedding is a big expense, so here are some tips to help you keep track of the amount you are spending and to make a little back!

Tip #1: Sign up for new cards with 0% APR
Although in my previous blog about using credit cards I state that you must always pay the credit card bill on time and in full, since a wedding is an unusually large expense that generally is not with in your normal living budget, I'm going to set that rule aside.  This can only be done if you open a new card that has one of its new perks as 0% APR for a certain period of time (usually 12 or 18 months, the longer the better).  This means that for that period of time, you will not have to pay interest on your purchases even if you don't pay your bill in full.  Meaning that you can take a year or a year and a half to pay off all your wedding expenses without paying anything extra.  You still need to pay the minimum amount on time to avoid late fees though.

Tip #2: Find credit cards that give you perks you can use
I always love signing up for new cards that have a cash bonus for spending a certain amount within a time frame which can give you anywhere from $50 to $200 for just using the card!  In general rewards, I usually go for cashback.  They are overall the most practical and give you the most bang for your buck, but since weddings and particularly honeymoons are such specific categories, it may be more in your interest to find a card that rewards you in those areas.  For example, finding a great travel rewards or airline card for your honeymoon expenses might get you free airline tickets, hotel stays, car rentals, etc.  This means you can spend more on extra treats!

Tip #3: Use the cards only for wedding or honeymoon expenses
Using these new credit cards only for your wedding or honeymoon expenses helps you to keep track of everything you are spending on it.  Even the most experienced planners are going to run into extra expenses that you didn't plan on, and things add up, it can be hard to keep track of everything.  As long as all your expenses are on one or two cards, it makes it easier to see.

Tip #4: Pay for as much as you can with credit cards
In order to make use of being able to pay off the purchases over the 12 or 18 months and to get the most rewards, always try and use the credit card for your expenses.  In today's world, it is much easier to pay with a credit card for almost every wedding expense where you normally would have to pay with a check.  Definitely make sure your venue accepts cards since that is your largest expense (there might be a little fee, but it's still worth it to use the card).  For smaller vendors like florists, caterers, musicians, DJ's, makeup artists, etc, ask them if they use PayPal or any other website or app that lets you pay with a card.  If they don't, suggest that they sign up for one.  There are many that are free to use and just charge a slight fee (a small percentage of their price) to use cards.  This can help gain more customers who are like us and prefer to pay with a card!

I hope these tips help you in paying for your wedding and honeymoon expenses.  I know it's a crazy huge amount so it's important to stay on top of it financially.  Keep reading this blog for more ways to save on your wedding and in your everyday life!

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Setting a Wedding Budget

The first, and probably most important, thing to do when starting to plan a wedding is to figure out your budget.  This can be difficult to do, but you have to make an estimate so you know what you can work with.  Things always end up costing more, and there are things you generally don't think about, but having an idea is important.

I always say to start by researching what your dream wedding (well dream wedding in a realistic way) would be.  See what that ends up costing, and what each individual thing costs, and you can decide if you need to cut back, what the most important things are, and you can work around that.

For those people that are budget conscious, these are the areas that I found affect price the most:

Guest Count
This is by far the biggest expense factor.  There are so many things that cost per head, not just the food and drink which is pricey, but many other things.

Time of Year
Everyone gets married between the months of May and August.  That means the prices are high.  Even if you're not into the winter wedding idea, spring and fall can be beautiful, and maybe even nicer weather.  You'll save thousands.

Day of the Week
Saturday is the highest price for a wedding.  Friday and Sunday are slightly cheaper.  And weekdays are even cheaper.  You'll save at least $1,000 just by changing to a Friday or Sunday and double or triple that during the week.

While general areas are more expensive, don't let that deter you from one area.  There are smaller or lesser-known places that are cheaper.  This just requires a lot of research.  Just know that places that you know about before you start wedding research are probably going to be insanely expensive.  Find places that are hidden gems, believe me, they do exist.

Food and Drink
Wedding CateringFood usually starts at $30 per person and can go as high as $100 per person.  Buffet option is usually cheaper than seated courses.  But if you don't mind forgoing the normal catering for a wedding, there can be other fun options to save money like having an afternoon picnic wedding or renting food trucks.

Drink prices can vary greatly depending on what amount of alcohol you want to pay for.  Obviously having your guests pay for their own drinks is the cheapest option, but it is a bit tacky.  There are usually three payment options for drinks: bring your own, per person, and per bottle/drink.  Bringing your own can save money by ordering in bulk directly from a distributor but be aware of corkage fees at your venue.  I found that the per person option was the easiest to determine your drink budget because it can be nearly impossible to figure out how many drinks will be ordered.  By paying per person, you can guarantee that your guests will have all they can drink for a set amount.  This doesn't have to be all alcohol.  You can pay for just beer and wine and have your guests pay for hard liquor, etc.

These are the areas that I found most influential in the budget.  As I said before, it is important to figure out what is most important to you.  If you really want good food, it's okay to spend a little more on that and cut back in other areas that aren't as important to you.  Although I'm all about saving money, it is your one chance (hopefully) to have the day you've always dreamed of.  There will have to be some compromises but make sure that there many things that you are very excited about so you don't mind compromising in other things.

Learn about saving money on wedding flowers here