Here’s a question I hear often: “Where’s the best place to save money at our wedding?”
You’d think an owner of a DJ company would answer that question with “anywhere but the music/entertainment!” but that’s not how I’m going to answer. My suggestion to anyone planning a party is this: prioritize everything. Then set your budget.
For some couples, the pictures they get from their wedding – the finished product of their wedding album and the enlargements they’ll frame to decorate their home – these are the most important things to them. Other couples might say the flowers, the bouquets that the bride and bridesmaids will carry and the centerpieces at each table are priority number one. Still others may place “the food” or “the dancing” or “the video” at the top of their list.
The answer to this question is extremely important because it can then tell you where you should be spending the most and not looking for bargains. And while I’d admit that paying more for a service doesn’t guarantee you’ll get the best, it often helps your chances. Since so much of the wedding business is supply and demand, you can often assume that a higher priced vendor is in higher demand and that’s probably because they exceed clients’ expectations so often. So while a higher price isn’t a guarantee of exceptional quality it’s often an indication of one, especially if the service in question has been around for a long time.
Once you’ve made your list you can look at the lower priorities as areas to save money, maybe “do it yourself” (especially if you’ve been inspired by some projects on Pinterest) or even eliminate a service altogether. So if you put music and dancing down at the bottom of your list, you may be the perfect couple for an “iPod Wedding.” If you put flowers down there, you may look at some of the wholesale options available for ordering arrangements. Or not have flowers at all (it’s not unheard of). If video is down on the list, you may not hire a professional at all. Maybe enlisting a friend who has a decent camera to get some shots is the best way for you to save some money.
Just understand this one thing (not that you need to be told this) weddings are a once in a lifetime thing. So be sure about your priorities before you look for cost cutting measures. If you’ve put something down at the bottom of the list, ask yourself this: if that element of my wedding went horribly wrong, would it ruin my day? If the answer to that question is “Yes” than you may need to rethink its position. But if the answer is a solid “No” then you’ve been honest with yourself and you may have found a way to save some money.