Scrimping and Saving: How Should you Spend your Wedding Budget?
As a bride or groom to be, you naturally want only the very best for your wedding day. But for the vast majority of couples, the wedding budget is not endless and tough choices have to be made when it comes to spending. Allocating your finances can be difficult: where should you scrimp and save, and what is worth the money? Here’s why budget entertainment options should be avoided when possible – and trust me, this is not just bias talking!
Wedding entertainment vs the bacon butty
Wedding entertainment can make or break your big day. An experienced DJ will keep your guests dancing until last orders, while a cheap alternative could ruin your reception by playing the tunes you detest, failing to read the crowd, and ending the evening on an average note. By scrimping on the things that make a real difference, your day will stop far, far short of magical. But for many couples, their sense of priorities tend to go awry when it comes to spending.
Did you know that most couples will spend more on chair covers than their entertainment? Many will spend more on a cake (most of which never gets eaten), or on just one drink per daytime guest. Even one bacon butty – when bought for all of your guests – can cost much more than your entire evening’s entertainment. When you put it into context, it really is ludicrous! Will chair covers really enhance your evening, creating lasting memories for you and your guests?
A Night To Remember
Don’t take my word for it; put it to the test! Ask friends, colleagues, people at the gym, who are either not engaged, or have not got married in the past 3 years. Ask them the following questions, from weddings they have attended, and take note of their answers.
- Did the bride look amazing?
- What was her dress like?
- What did the cake look like?
- What did the cake taste like?
- What was the music like for the ceremony?
- Was the food good?
- What food did you have?
- What were the bar prices like?
- What was the evening entertainment like?
- What is your single most lasting memory of the wedding?
In true Derren Brown style, I can tell you what around 90% of the answers will be.
- Yes, don’t they always?
- I have no idea (men), I can’t remember (women)
- I can’t remember
- I don’t think I had any. (Or on the rare occasion they did – ‘it was cake!’).
- I don’t remember. (Unless the music was professionally managed or performed, in which case many family members and other guests will remember)
- 95%+ will remember if the food was good or not
- Around 70% will remember exactly what they had.
- 80% of men will remember whether the bar prices were high or not, around 50% of women will remember.
- I’ll hedge my bets that 99% minimum will tell you exactly what they thought of the evening’s entertainment. It will stick in their minds far longer than anything else. Remember that this – along with the bar prices – will be the only measure of the day for your evening guests.
- This one I am going to leave to you to find out. I think the answer might surprise you.
If you really want to know what is genuinely important for a great wedding, I urge you to ask these questions.
Mind Blowing Decisions
How is the budget decided? Some couples base their budget on what their friends spent on entertainment, which on the face of it is a wise move. However I’ve had a few conversations along the lines of the following.
Bride-to-be: …”Yes, we based our budget on the price my friend spent on her wedding DJ”
Me: “And were you at that wedding?”
Me: “So is there any particular reason that you’re not booking the DJ from that wedding?”
B-2-be: “Oh he wasn’t very good”
Me: “So your budget is based on the price of a DJ you didn’t think was very good?”…
If you do decide to book professional, high quality entertainment for your wedding day (and naturally I recommend that you do), it helps to understand how to get the most for your money. A top wedding DJ will proactively meet with you to discuss the day; including your likes, dislikes, and hopes for the evening. By chatting openly and honestly, your DJ can provide suggestions – based on years of experience – to enhance your day even more. Your evening will be transformed from something memorable, to a wedding reception that is magical, unforgettable, and quite simply incredible.
No matter how you spend your wedding budget, memories happen regardless. Just remember that how great they are or how long they last takes some work!
Thanks to my colleague and friend Colin Cook for the inspiration for this article, which he blogged about a few months ago