Planning the perfect wedding can be a daunting task. The average couple in the US has between 12-18 months from the time that they become engaged to the day of their wedding. This may seem like you have ample time, however if you aren’t regularly sticking to a wedding planning checklist, time may sneak up on you and your big day may fall short of your childhood dreams. Here are some tips to make sure that doesn’t happen.
Set up a Timeline
Perhaps the most important part of the wedding planning process is to immediately establish a timeline of tasks you can feasibly achieve prior to your wedding date. Hiring a Full Service Wedding Planner or using a free wedding registry website like Zola can help alleviate wedding planning stress by providing you with a checklist according to your wedding date. These are great options if you have a busy schedule with little time to contemplate the intricate details that play into the perfect day. Just be wary, as Full Service Wedding Planners are able to command much higher prices for the extent of their involvement through their services.
Establishing a Budget
After you get an idea what time frame you’ll be working within, you should establish a wedding budget based on how much you’re willing to spend, as well as any families’ contributions. Your budget will ultimately affect each decision of the wedding, so it is important to stick to a realistic budget and communicate it to your wedding planner (if you opted to hire one), so that they are able to provide you with options within your price point. While budgets often change according to realizations that a dream wedding may cost more than intended or that there is not enough money to support one, it’s encouraged to communicate with your soon-to-be spouse and agree upon some of the major expenses to avoid wasting any time canceling or contacting new vendors. Especially, since venues are often booked over a year in advance!
Understand Your Priorities
Your budget should coincide with what elements of a wedding you think matter most. A recent study of 750+ newly engaged and newly-married couples found that couples were generally happy with investments which made guests and family feel “joyful” and “wanting to celebrate.” Namely, the wedding venue, photographer, and band/DJ (in that order) were said to be the top 3 wedding elements that newly weds found made their wedding “truly unforgettable.” Creating a “truly unforgettable” wedding experience seemed to be a recurring theme throughout the study, as 25% of couples wished they had spent more money on a videographer and 22% wish they had spent more on a photographer. There is so much that goes into wedding planning that it is easy to forget it’s all over in one day! To get the most out of your wedding, consider a budget that prioritizes fun and the ability to capture every moment you’ll want to relive again and again.