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Question:


Wedding bells are definitely in my near future. Any tips for keeping my costs low?
-NOLAbride


Answer:


Congratulations, but don’t let the ringing in your ears cloud your thinking. The average wedding is estimated to cost nearly $30,000. Considering the high divorce rate these days, it’s quite likely that some marriages will end long before the weddings that marked their beginnings are paid off. One obvious way to be married and solvent at the same time is to elope, but family commitments, a sense of tradition, a romantic spirit or just a desire to throw a dynamite party may eliminate elopement as an option. In that case, saving a substantial sum on your wedding will not be easy, but it is doable.
 
One suggestion, from the girlsjustwannahavefunds.com website, is to order your dress directly from a dressmaker, many of whom peddle their wares on sites like eBay at prices that are a fraction of what retailers would charge for the same garments. Their other ideas include renting bridesmaids dresses and haggling with DJs, whose bargaining position has eroded in an age of iPods and similar devices. Another, more controversial, suggestion on the site is to get married at an exotic locale, such as a Caribbean island, that may be expensive to get to but quite reasonably priced when it comes to staging grand occasions. This option may entail some social risk. While it would save money for you, it would cost your guests more to get there. The people you need to be there will manage it, however, and if you truly want to save and you don’t mind thinning the herd a bit, then it could be the way to go.
-Conrad de Aenlle



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