When it comes to weddings, it is normal for couples to want to splurge on this once-in-a-lifetime celebration. Moreover, with easy access to beautiful inspirations from all around the globe, one can have grand expectations of their dream wedding which can turn out to be quite idealistic and costly.

However, you still can have your dream wedding without shelling out too much cash. Here are 9 tips for planning that budget-friendly wedding that will not compromise on style!

  • This piece is part of our Life’s On Track series. As this is the month of International Women’s Day, we will kickstart with a series of women profiles for the next 3 weeks. Learn more about it here.
  • Planning a wedding doesn’t need to be stressful! Use Shopback’s Ultimate Wedding Checklist to guide you through the entire process, step-by-step, and you will have a relaxed and most memorable celebration. 

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Top Tips to Plan an Affordable Wedding

1. Have your pre-wedding shoot done locally

The Halia Botanic Gardens
Image credit: @mason_khor | Instagram

You don’t have to go abroad to find a beautiful spot for your pre-wedding photos. Singapore has plenty of parks, greenery and even abandoned buildings that can serve as a perfect backdrop for your pre-wedding shoot. Get casual, incorporate personal elements and capture raw moments that will make your engagement shoot no less stunning than one done abroad.

2. Skip the overseas destination wedding

beach wedding
Image credit: Pixabay.com

Having your wedding overseas will put a huge dent into your wedding budget. Other than paying for the flight and accommodation for your guests, you also have to factor in costs involved travelling for site recces, as well as paying for the travel costs of vendors, makeup artists and photographers.

3. Opt for a smaller and more affordable wedding venue

Curious Palette Cafe Wedding
Image credit: Curious Palette | Instagram

Even if you’re holding your wedding in Singapore, your choice is a big ticket item that will contribute greatly to your overall spending. Holding your wedding in a ballroom or hotel has a large capacity for your guests but you will also have to shell out a lot of money for the venue and food. The price per wedding banquet table at a hotel is easily SGD$1000 and up, and larger venues also mean spending more on decorations, table settings and other miscellaneous items.

Choose to celebrate your wedding at a café or even function hall that suits you and your partner’s personalities, and the intimate setting will create an experience that your guests will not easily forget!

Read more: Small & Affordable Wedding Venues Singapore (Cafés, bars & more!)

4. Hold the ceremony and reception together

wedding ceremony
Image credit: Pixabay.com

If you’re holding the ceremony and reception on a different date and place, it means double the expense. If you can, hold your ceremony and reception on the same date, time and place. Think about all the money you can save!

5. Decorate with greenery, not flowers!

Florals will always be a popular theme for weddings but fresh flowers can be quite costly, especially on a large scale. Going green is always great, even for your wedding! Opt for a botanical themed wedding and if you do want flowers, use them as accents rather than the main centrepiece. Another alternative is to use fake flowers instead of real ones.

Wedding decor
Image credit: Pixabay.com

6. Skip the open bar and champagne toast

Having an open bar for your wedding is a nice treat to the guests for sure. However, if you’re uncomfortable with leaving the tab open, just go ahead and skip the open bar.

wedding champagne toast
Image credit: Pixabay.com

Speaking of alcohol, while it is a wedding tradition to have a champagne toast, quite often the champagne goes to waste as some guests only take polite sips. If you would like to have a ceremonial wedding toast, trade the champagne for a non-alcoholic drink like sparkling grape!

7. Choose a minimal wedding cake

wedding cake
Image credit: Pixabay.com

Another unnecessary expenditure is the wedding cake. Typically, guests aren’t really interested in eating the cake and the cake cutting is more for its symbolism. Skip the 7-tier cakes with grand decorations and opt for a simple wedding cake with minimal decorations. A simple cake with fresh flowers and edible greens might even look better and more unique than a custom wedding cake.

8. Skip the outfit changes

Wedding dresses
Image credit: Pinterest

Instead of spending more money on an extra dress or suit, just pick one outfit and stick to it through the wedding ceremony. It’s your day and you’re going to look great in any outfit!

9. Shop online at non-wedding retailers

Zalora bridesmaid dresses
Image credit: Zalora website

Try shopping online for your bridesmaids’ or groomsmen attire, accessories and gifts at non-wedding retailers. Sometimes, wedding-specific items have “premium” prices, even when the products aren’t really that wedding specific. One of the favourite online retailers for this is Taobao. You can also take advantage of the many sales and best deals online to shop for all of the things you need for your wedding. ShopBack regularly updates you with the latest ASOS discount code and Zalora coupon so you can save more with Cashback – so it is worth having a look at ShopBack first before checking out on your orders.

We hope these tips above will help you to have a memorable wedding without the extra expense. After all, a wedding is ultimately the celebration of the union of two souls who truly love each other. Do you have other useful tips or tricks?

Originally published on 12 October 2017. Update on 4 March 2019.

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