Whether you are planning a luxury wedding or a more intimate affair, your wedding day is likely to be the most expensive day of your life. No matter what your budget is, there can be many unexpected wedding costs that creep up throughout your planning stages. Here is our list of unexpected wedding costs to help ensure you keep within your budget without any nasty surprises along the way.
When you give your final numbers to the venue and caterers, remember to include yourselves in this list. Many happy couples forget to include themselves in the final numbers and overlook the fact that they will need to pay catering and other costs for the big day.
Hen and stag do
Stag and hen dos are becoming bigger and better occasions, sometimes even including trips abroad. These can be lavish and expensive affairs. Although traditionally the cost of the hen and stag do are covered by those attending, future brides and grooms might find themselves having to contribute, from flights and accommodation to activities and food.
Marriage license & registrar
Giving notice to get married isn’t free – it currently costs around £70 to give notice of your intent to marry. This is often overlooked by the couple, as well as the cost of getting the registrar to their wedding venue, which can cost almost £500. Marriage certificates are also another unexpected cost, although these are cheaper if you pay for them in advance. We suggest getting more than one as they will be needed in order to change your name after the wedding.
You have found your perfect wedding dress and your bridesmaids dresses, but don’t forget about any alteration costs. If you are purchasing all your dresses from the same place then be sure to ask for a discount. Some wedding stores will give you a 5th bridesmaid dress free or offer free alterations if you are buying more than 3 dresses.
You’ve got your wedding invitations, but did you remember to budget for posting them? Hopefully you can hand deliver some of them, but this can still add anything from £40 plus to your wedding budget. Save money by sending them second class, or asking friends and relatives to help hand them out.
Thank you cards
Within three months after the wedding you will be expected to send out your guests cards to thank them for their gift. You might also want to send thank you cards to your vendors and the wedding venue. More and more newlyweds are opting to get photo cards printed, using photographs from their big day. You can design these photo cards from as little as £1 per card, but you will need to pay for delivery and then postage to send them out.
Your wedding day can include many vendors, from your photographer to DJ or band, it is important to fuel them up for giving you great service! Ask your vendors if they would like to be catered for (some prefer to bring their own food or to just take a break and get their own food) and then talk to your caterers about meals they can provide. These are often cheaper than your wedding breakfast meals, but you will still need to factor them in.
Often overlooked, the groom’s shoes can add more to a wedding budget when they are finally remembered. Having to purchase them last minute often means paying more than you would have done if you had time to research. Try to get a bargain by purchasing them in the sales, buying second hand or hiring them alongside your wedding suits.
Not many couples overlook their honeymoon, but they do overlook the associated costs. Flights, accommodation and spending money are probably taken care of, but have you thought about airport parking, pet sitting and your travel insurance? Remember to think of it as a holiday, with all the usual added costs associated.
Changing your name after the wedding
If you choose to change your surname after the wedding then you might find that it becomes a costly affair. Some name changes can be made easily with a simple phone call, but others may require you visiting a branch of your local bank, posting your marriage certificate or even paying over £70 to renew your passport. Changing your name might come after the wedding, but it is still an important cost to consider.
Now that you have a list of unexpected wedding costs, you can adjust your wedding budget to ensure that none of these things are overlooked. If you are unsure about certain aspects of your wedding then it is better to put this money aside anyway – if you later decide to forgo something then you can channel that money elsewhere in your wedding budget or even use it towards your honeymoon.