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Five Ways to Save Money for a Wedding

Updated on December 4, 2010

Weddings are a fabulous celebration of love and an important right of passage, but they're also getting rather expensive. According to CostOfWedding.com, the average American couple spends $19,581 on their wedding - not including the cost of a wedding ring or honeymoon. As most of us don't have twenty thousand dollars lightly folded into our pockets, a formidable amount of saving must be done in preparation of the event! Here are five ways to save for the big date.

Want the designer dress? You'll have to budget for it!
Want the designer dress? You'll have to budget for it!

Before you start...

Before you start saving for your wedding, it's important to consider how much you're going to need. If you want to host a large event at the Palace Hotel in New York City complete with a designer wedding gown and elaborate flower arrangements, you'll need a lot more money than if you want to host a modest backyard affair. Consdier what your goals are, and utilize a wedding budgeting website (there are lots of options to choose from) to help you calculate the cost. Factor in your time frame (are you saving for an established date, or some vague event in the future?) and you'll know how much you'll need to save on average every month.

Now you're ready to go!  To make the saving process a bit easier  - and maybe even a little fun - consider the strategies below:

1. Automatically set aside a percentage of your paycheck

Once you've determined how much you'll need to save each month for your wedding, you can calculate what percentage of your paycheck will need to be directed toward your wedding savings in order to reach that goal.

If you automate the redirection of that amount into a savings account every month, you won't have to think about squirreling that money away, and chances are you'll easily adjust to your slightly slimmer monthly disposable income in no time.

Creating an online wedding fund can allow your friends and family to gift you with funds :D
Creating an online wedding fund can allow your friends and family to gift you with funds :D

2. Create an Online Wedding Fund

There are currently several websites out there that allow couples to create public funds for weddings, honeymoons, and other goals to which friends and family can easily donate money.  You can utilize one of these services, or even set up your own website and accept donations over PayPal.  

If you feel like being particularly creative about your online wedding fund, you can create cool sculptures, paintings, or other artistic artifacts representing certain aspects of your wedding (e.g. the location, the dress, the food, the flowers).  You can make those items available in an online store for sale at the cost of the actual aspect of your event - this makes donations a bit more fun and interesting!

If you 'tax' yourself on big purchases, you can save for your wedding even as you spend!
If you 'tax' yourself on big purchases, you can save for your wedding even as you spend!

3. Tax yourself!

If you want to save money by spending money, you can levy a tax on yourself - kind of like a sales tax - on items that you buy.  As an example, you might direct 10 cents of every dollar you spend to your wedding fund.  

There are some debit cards that can be set up to do this automatically, but you can go through your expenses on a monthly or weekly basis and compute the amount manually as well.

If you don't feel like 'taxing' yourself on all purchases, you can also opt to simply tax yourself on luxury items.  This can help to dissuade you from making impulse purchases (when you could instead be saving for your wedding), or even make you feel good about them (e.g. "Well, I just bought a pair of Manolos, but I also tucked away a hefty amount of cash for my wedding! Ha!").

Want something more than a backyard party? You just might have to get some part-time work... But it'll be worth it!
Want something more than a backyard party? You just might have to get some part-time work... But it'll be worth it!

4. Get a part-time job on the side

Let's face it - you might not be able to garner all the money you'll need for your wedding if it's going to be a super-fancy one.  Redirecting money from your current income or asking for support from friends might not be enough.  

In this case, you might consider getting a part-time job for a bit to get some additional income.  There are lots of options out there, and many part-time positions can be done from the comfort of your own home.  You might even consider opening an Etsy shop or doing some cool consulting work - in the end, you might develop additional professional skills that can bolster your career long after the wedding is over!

5. Direct your HubPages earnings toward the event!

On HubPages.com, there are authors who make $1,500 and more on a monthly basis - just from articles they have published.  Why not write about what you love while also making money?  If you're already on HubPages, consider directing all of your AdSense earnings toward your wedding fund.  

If you aren't already on HubPages, consider joining the community!  It's easy, and a great way to develop an additional passive income you can direct toward your future wedding :D

Comments

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    • Simone Smith profile imageAUTHOR

      Simone Haruko Smith 

      7 years ago from San Francisco

      Oh yes, I can imagine that wedding planners can be quite costly! Good tips, weddinggair!

    • Simone Smith profile imageAUTHOR

      Simone Haruko Smith 

      7 years ago from San Francisco

      Thanks so much, K9keystrokes! Your compliments mean a lot, especially since you've been writing such great financial guides yourself!

    • K9keystrokes profile image

      India Arnold 

      7 years ago from Northern, California

      Simone, this is a group of very spectacular ideas and suggestions to help manage saving towards a wedding. I would have never thought about levying a tax on myself...brilliant! Having a debit card set-up for this makes it an easy task with minimal conscious effort, which works for me. Great hub!

      K9

    • Simone Smith profile imageAUTHOR

      Simone Haruko Smith 

      8 years ago from San Francisco

      Thanks TopUniverse!

      And Allison Dittmar - congrats to your daughter!! That's so exciting!! I hope she finds the advice helpful.

    • Alison Dittmar profile image

      Alison Dittmar 

      8 years ago from PA

      Simone, Thanks so much for writing this. I have a daughter getting married next summer (just forwarded to her!)- the tips and ideas are really helpful for a young bride and her mom (!) on ways to save money. And, if I wasn't already a member I'd be signing up ~ nice job.

    • profile image

      TopUniverse 

      8 years ago

      Awesome ideas to spend and save money for a wedding functions.

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