Are you concerned that you have overlooked a wedding expense in your planning?
There are so many moving parts to planning a wedding that it is easy to overlook a wedding expense or two. After all you are not an event planner. This is likely the largest event you have ever planned. And you are charging yourself with researching, arranging, and tracking all those tiny details while bombarded with everyone else’s opinions of your plans. No wonder you forget or miss some expenses! So, we have created this list of 5 unexpected wedding expenses. You got this!
Wedding Expense 1: Pre-wedding events
Most brides carefully budget for their wedding dress, and grooms rent a tuxedo or other wedding attire. But what about all the other events? Don’t forget the wedding expense of the clothing you will wear to other events you’ll be attending:
- Engagement party
- Bachelor or bachelorette party
- Bridal Shower(s)
- Rehearsal Dinner
- Reception Dress
- Day after-brunch
- Honeymoon clothing
- Going away outfit if you are changing before you leave your reception
- Lingerie for your wedding night.
Now, you are not required to wear something new for each of these, but if that is what you are planning, be sure to include the costs in your wedding expenses. And don’t forget to include the costs of accessories like shoes and jewelry as well as transportation.
Our tip is to shop early and catch the sales. Most of the larger retailers have regular sales on party wear and you may even find end of season sales for your honeymoon.
To save and still have a fresh look at each event, consider borrowing an outfit from a like-sized friend. No will ever notice, and you’ll only wear it for a few hours.
Include a line in your wedding budget, so you can track these wedding expenses and avoid overspending.
Wedding Expense 2 : Alterations, Undergarments and Accessories
You budgeted for your wedding dress. Hopefully you have accounted for the cost of alterations you may need to your dress.
Nearly all wedding gowns need alterations at least once and may require a second alteration if you lose weight or misjudged your final size. You should plan at least a couple of hundred dollars for each time you have alterations, and more if your gown has several layers or is highly embellished. The more handwork on the gown, the more expensive the alterations.
So, your dress is perfect, but did you remember:
- Getting ready outfit or robe and slippers for the day of the wedding
- Veil or headpiece
- A second pair of dancing shoes for the reception
- Bra, underwear and shape wear
- Pantyhose (and be sure to have an extra pair)
- Jewelry – earrings, necklace and bracelet.
Again, you can avoid overlooking these wedding expenses by including a line for them in your wedding budget and deciding in advance how much you will spend for each.
Wedding Expense 3: Hair and Makeup Trials
If you are having your hair and makeup done professionally, you will need to have at least one trial run. And, you may need more than one, depending on if the trial meets with your approval. Plan on each trial costing about 75% of the cost of your final wedding makeup. Be sure to ask what the charge will be for a redo if you do not like the first trial look.
And don’t forget, you will need small samples of the makeup for wedding day touch-ups. Ask if these are included or are provided at an additional cost. Or ask for colors and purchase your own makeup if it is not included in the price.
If you are planning spray tanning session for the wedding you are going to want a test run a few weeks or months in advance, especially if you have not used the salon before. Be sure to include the cost of all sessions in your budget.
Of course, you may also have dozens of small things in mind to make you and your groom look perfect on your wedding day, Brides are seeking teeth whitening, mani-pedis and other beauty services, but often forget to include them in their wedding budget. Don’t forget manicures for the groom. The photographer will be focusing on the groom’s hands as much as yours on the wedding day.
Wedding Expense 4: Reception Overtime Costs
I have attended some wedding receptions, where guests left early. But in far more, the couple planned what their guests liked, and the party was in full swing when the appointed end time arrived.
Do you stop the party or should it continue? Be prepared for this, by finding out in advance, how much it will cost if your party is going too well to cut it off at the end time. What will it cost to continue to party for another hour or two? Consider venue costs, servers, band or DJ, and of course the bar and munchies. Have you planned a pick-up time for rental items that will need to be adjusted if you extend your party?
If you want to extend your reception, make sure you have allocated money in your budget to cover overtime charges – and to tip staff extra for staying beyond the time specified in your contract. Know the costs, decide in advance what you will do, and stick with what you and your partner agreed on. (Hint: It is going to be expensive but may be worth it.)
Wedding Expense 5: Breakfast and Lunch for the Wedding Party
If you have early morning hair and makeup appointments, you may need breakfast. Carry out from a local restaurant or a box of donuts can fill the bill, just include some protein to avoid sugar spikes. Protein bars are an easy option. Lunch may be a little heartier, but still plan delivery or carry out in advance so everyone can relax before the wedding.
While it is customary to have some bubbly or other celebratory drinks, you will want to limit them before the wedding, so everyone will be in their best form for the walk down the aisle.
Just be sure to eat throughout the day and, for the bride, drink lots of water for a glowing radiant look.
So, in advance, you will need to
- Plan the food and drinks you need. Think casual and fun, not formal
- Include non-alcoholic drinks and water
- Place the order a few days before the wedding
- Arrange for delivery or pickup by someone not in the wedding party
- Have cash on hand for the meal and tip
- Don’t forget ice and snacks
Your wedding is a large event, with lots of people, and anything can happen. Be sure to have a little extra cash on hand for the unexpected on the wedding day. If someone forgets their shoes, a quick trip to Walmart is better than a two-hour ride home to retrieve them.
Be prepared if your final bill from vendors is slightly higher than you expected. Perhaps you have additional guests attend who did not RSVP. Request an explanation for the additional charge and if it is legitimate, you will have to pay the entire amount. If there is reasonable explanation, refer back to your contract as you should not pay more than the agreed upon contract unless there were additional agreed upon services provided.
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