The Perfect Wedding on a Budget – Economical and Elegant

Weddings can be expensive, but you can still have the wedding of your dreams without breaking the bank.

Karla was looking forward to a perfect day.  She was finally going to marry Alex, the man of her dreams. As she walked down the aisle on her big day, she greeted family and friends with smiles and glances, who in response whispered how beautiful she looked. Karla then fixed her gaze on the love of her life waiting at the altar.

This fairy tale wedding, however, came with a hefty price tag for the young couple. From the wedding invitations to the flowers and accessories, they spent approximately $10,000.  But what they thought was a “fortune” is quite modest according to a report by The Knot.

In a recent survey the bridal experts found that an average wedding in 2014 cost $31,213, more than three times what Karla and Alex spent on theirs…and that total does not even include honeymoon costs.

More shocking, that big price tag is low for what you can expect to spend if you want to get married in a wedding “hotspot” like New York. Manhattan and Long Island have dubious notoriety as the most expensive places in the U.S. to get married, and couples can expect to spend an average of $76,328 and $55,327 respectively. It’s worth noting that those figures includes honeymoon costs where The Knot’s numbers didn’t.

Curious what’s the most economical place state to tie the knot? The survey says Utah. The average wedding costs $15,257.

Big city brides also spend the most on the wedding gowns. While brides from Idaho and Alaska spend the least on their dresses, at an average of $ 982 and $ 925 respectively, Manhattan brides spend an average of $2,914 and Long Island brides $2,137.

With these astronomical costs, Marisol and Eduardo were intent on having an economical wedding. So, when they decided to get married they remembered a True Cost to Tie the Knot  Infographic Consolidated Credit created to help folks understand what the real cost of their wedding will be if paid in cash or credit. In order to make the occasion special for both them and for their families, Marisol and Eduardo used the Infographic as a guide to plan a debt free and stress free wedding.

Here’s what they did…

The Plan

They kept the guest list low – 70, and created a spending plan that they followed to a T. They planned every detail on a budget and because they started planning early they had enough time to compare costs like how much they were willing to spend on their wedding and honeymoon.

The Dress

Marisol decided to shop around for dresses both in stores and online. And although getting married had been a lifelong dream of hers, Marisol decided not to spend a fortune on a dress that she would wear only once. The cost of her dress? Three hundred dollars on sale at David ‘s Bridal – a fraction of what she had originally planned to spend.

The Invitations

Using Vista Print and with the help of her friends, she chose the perfect wedding invitation. Although the national average cost of wedding invitations run about $439, for 70 invitations Marisol spent only $49.

The Type of Wedding and Reception

The couple had a morning wedding on the beach and booked a club house nearby for the reception. They chose a buffet-style breakfast with coffee, tea and juices instead of a dinner that would cost much more.

The Photography/Pictures

They used two of their friends with semi-professional cameras to take photos and a video of the ceremony.

The results? An economical and elegant wedding.

Although both Karla and Marisol felt like princesses on their wedding day, Karla spent much more than Marisol. So Marisol can relax knowing that she would begin her new life as Mrs. Perez completely debt free while Karla and her new husband are working to find ways to pay off their debt.