One of the most challenging parts of planning a wedding is figuring out a budget that you are comfortable with. The next challenge is sticking to it!
Even the most organized person that is generally great with money may have a little trouble due to the many "unexpected" costs that can pop up and surprise you. WhereBridesGo.com has put together a list of commonly forgotten wedding items that you need to make room for in your budget.
Most of the wedding vendors that require gratuities (caterers, servers, bartenders, etc...) will probably have it added to your contract, but the actual amount may not be in the initial quote. The percentage is sometimes not added until a final amount has been decided.
For the vendors that don't automatically charge you a gratuity, you may want to give them a little extra for a job well done, such as your DJ or band, hairstylist and makeup artist, valet, coat check attendant, delivery people, etc... As a rule of thumb, business owners don't need to be tipped, but if they went above and beyond what was expected of them, a tip is always a welcome bonus.
You already know that some of your budget will need to go toward wedding invitations. In all of the excitement of picking them out, most couples forget about the fact that postage is not included in the price.
Depending on how many guests you are inviting and how heavy your invites are, that can get expensive very quickly. Get an idea of how much postage each one will take and figure that amount into your budget allowance. Also, don't forget to add in the cost of stamps for mailing out post-wedding thank you cards too.
Sales Tax, Service Charges, & Overtime
Check contracts carefully to see whether or not sales tax has already been included in the price or if it will be added in with the final bill. When it's a large bill, such as hall rental or catering, that sales tax will be a hefty number.
Also, look out for additional costs listed as "service charges" on a contract. Unless it is clearly stated otherwise, things like delivery, breaking down, cutting the cake, and other extras may cost you extra. Know what each vendor charges for overtime too just in case you need them longer than expected on the wedding day.
Without this very important piece of paper, instead of planning a wedding you're only planning a really big party! You will want to find out the details about obtaining a marriage license in the county that you will be married in early during the planning stages. It can cost anywhere from $10 all the way up to $100+, depending on county or state regulations. If it's one of the more expensive places to get married, it could cut into your wedding budget if you're not expecting it.
Wedding Day Meals
The main meal for the day, at the reception, is something that will already be on your budget list, but don't forget about the rest of the day. It's very important that you eat before the wedding so that you have the strength and energy to make it through until the end of the reception. You'll want to make sure that you have food available for your wedding party too since this is most likely an all-day event for them also.
Lots of couples don't realize that they are responsible for feeding the wedding vendors that have to stay for the reception. This will include the wedding coordinator, photographer, videographer, DJ, and anyone else that won't be able to leave to eat dinner because they are making your special day happen. Some caterers will offer special discounted pricing for vendor meals.
Keeping those items in mind when you plan a wedding budget will save you from a lot of worries and stress down the road. This doesn't completely cover all of the extra expenses we've come across though. Next week, we'll have a few more for you to add to the list.
We do have one last money-saving tip for you today. Shop our affordable wedding accessories online at WhereBridesGo.com! There you'll find just about everything you could possibly need to put on the wedding of your dreams. This one-stop-shopping also comes with FREE standard ground shipping on all orders delivered within the Continental USA. Take a look around. We know you will love what you see!
~The WhereBridesGo.com Team
Post by Deanna Powell, Certified Bridal Consultant