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Cheap Dates & Cheap Weddings Now Making More Cents

Cheap Dates & Cheap Weddings

Cheap dates & cheap weddings might become the new thang as those who splurge on their “Big Day” end up with regrets, money fights and, no kidding: Divorce.

Traditionally, Daddy Warbucks would cough up the dough for his daughter’s wedding. However, more couples today are doing it on their own dime, and if necessary, on their credit cards.

Wedding Costs

According to a past Visa survey weddings cost an average of $7,873 in the period between 1997 and 2007, but today the going estimate is around $30,000.

Weddings cost more than many couples realize. For example, consider some typical expenses rounded up by Money Under 30:

    Church/Officiant Fee: $500
    Reception Site Rental: $2,500
    Food: $40/plate x 100 = $4,000
    Photographer: $2,000
    DJ or Band: $1,500
    Flowers: $750
    Cake: $500
    Rings: $5,000
    Dress/Tux: $500
    Open Bar: $3,500

    Total: $20,750

A brand new survey from LendingTree discovered about 45% of newlyweds between the ages of 18 and 53 went into debt to pay for their wedding. As a result, the ugly truth is: this had led to money fights and divorce thoughts after the wedding.

Wedding Debt

Three out of four newlyweds who went into debt for their wedding say they argued about wedding-related expenses with their partner. Comparatively, only 20% of those who avoided wedding debt said the same. Nearly half of newlyweds who went into wedding debt say money caused them to contemplate divorce, compared to just 9% of couples who did not go into debt for their wedding.

LendingTree also found one-third of those who had wedding debt say they argue with their partner about money often, versus 11% of couples without wedding debt. About one in four newlyweds wish they spent less on their wedding, and their biggest regret was spending too much on food and drink or the venue. For about a third of newlyweds (32%), family caused the most headaches during the wedding planning process.  Money was the primary stressor for 28%, and 17% reported the guest list as their biggest headache. 

The ten-year old Visa survey showed 36% of couples spent less than $1000 on their wedding; 2% spent more than $50,000 on their wedding; 21% of women believe they overspent on wedding food, cake and drinks, compared to only 9% of men who believe they spent too much in that area; and 16% of men say they overspent on the honeymoon, while just 7% of women agreed.

Cheaper Wedding Suggestions

Alternatives: buy a slightly used or bargain wedding dress under $300; buy a new men’s suit and have the groomsman wear suits; buy wedding rings online; have a friend or relatives make a cake; and have a wedding reception in the early afternoon and followed it up with a BYOB after-party.

The author, Robert McKinley, father of six adult children, recalls coughing up a lot of dough for weddings or wedding-related parties, and suggests an open bar is not a good idea, including liability concerns. At one pre-wedding event on Sanibel Island, Florida, the bar bill was well over $4,000 for 100 people, mostly Long Island Ice Teas or other top shelf spirits. I did not know my son was marrying into a family of alcoholics.

Wedding Insurance

One final note is to consider wedding insurance cause stuff can happen. In the U.S checkout WedSafe and if you happen to get married in New Zealand checkout DreamWeddingInsurance.

Wedding Insurance provides coverage against:

·         Cancellation

·         Rescheduling

·         Supplier Failure

·         Damaged Hired Equipment

·         Stolen or Damaged Rings/Gifts/Wedding Attire

·         Wedding Transport

·         Public/Personal Liability