Wedding planning: How to manage money, RSVPs and unwanted wedding suggestions
Wedding,  Wedding Planning

Wedding Planning Tips: Money, RSVPS and Unwanted Suggestions!

Wedding planning is such a fun and exciting time for a couple. But there are some elements that can really deflate you. Keep reading for my wedding planning tips!


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Wedding Planning

For almost the last two years I have been wedding planning. I have been trying to create the perfect day for me and my wonderfully handsome fiancé.

We have been together for what feels like FOREVER, but in actual fact, it’s only been thirteen years.

We’re now on the countdown to 25th August 2018. Which will hopefully be a beautifully sunny Saturday afternoon. We will tie the knot at a gorgeous romantic venue outside Ballyclare in Northern Ireland.

On the whole, I have LOVED wedding planning. Our special day will be a very quirky, DIY wedding displaying our personalities in abundance.

However, as much as I’ve loved planning, there are a few things that I have become acutely aware of throughout the whole process.

These include money, guests and unwanted suggestions. Keep reading for my wedding planning tips on how to handle these particular hurdles.

Wedding planning tips:

Money and wedding planning

It is no surprise that weddings cost A LOT. According to the National Wedding Survey 2018, completed by BrideBook.co.uk, the average cost of a wedding in the UK is in excess of £30,000.

Naturally, every couple wants a day that they will never forget. Putting that amount into perspective, £30,000 would be a significant deposit on a house.

“What contributes to the average amount spent on a wedding?” I hear you ask.

Typically, UK couples aren’t going wild with their wedding spec. However, supplier costs have risen by an average of 12 per cent each year and this will have an impact.

It is possible to cut costs without booking every type of supplier such as bands and videographers. Even in these instances the average wedding spend is approximately £17,000.

Marquee hire, catering and venue styling have risen most this year with a staggering increase of 22% – 24%.

It is quite easy to blow the budget completely on a wedding with most couples overspending on catering and alcohol. Which is no surprise given the rise in popularity of a cash bars.

Suppliers

Although, there are suppliers who add a few extra zeros to their quote when they hear it’s for a wedding.

This is one of the reasons that a DIY wedding was more appealing to me. I could control the costs more.

However, I am aware that this is not for everyone. Some brides want someone to do it all for them because they don’t want the hassle.

To get the best prices from a supplier it is wise to shop around similar suppliers. You should seek a minimum of three quotes for each item needed.

I.E Photography, Catering and Hair and Make-up

This way can see what the average price is and then decide what you are willing to pay.

As an example, we are having a hog roast for the wedding breakfast. I approached five different catering companies specialising in external catering serving hog roast buffets.

The highest quote I received for 75 people was £5,000 and the lowest, £500. The highest priced service included extras that I did not require such as starters, desserts and table service. I ended up going with the lowest priced service because their quote was EXACTLY what I had asked for.

To save money without compromising on quality, visit wedding fayres and book with a supplier on the day. After you have thoroughly researched them of course.

Many suppliers will offer significant discounts at wedding fayres for couples who book them on the day. It goes without saying that this could save you hundreds of pounds.

RSVP and wedding planning

We have some very special people coming to our wedding from all over the world. No kidding. Some guests are coming from Canada, Germany, Amsterdam. Others are coming from closer to home in Ireland, Scotland and England.

I thought it would be a great idea to send out our invites six months in advance. My logic was to give guests plenty of time to make their travel arrangements and let us know if they could attend.

What I didn’t consider at the time was setting the RSVP date so close to the wedding (six weeks before).

Of course, we did have responses pretty much straight away. However, with such a long RSVP date we also had a lot of people read the invite and forget to respond.

While us brides may be caught up in wedding planning, it’s not always easy for us to remember that guests have their own lives to lead.

I’m all too aware that sometimes it feels like guests can take what feels like FOREVER to RSVP. Especially since I’d given an incredibly long RSVP deadline.

Chasing guests

Taking a step back and deploy some form of rationality for five minutes. It’s clear to appreciate that guests are being asked to plan out one day in their lives weeks, or in my case, up to six months in advance.

Even though a deadline is in place, it’s common for guests to either forget to get back to you. Some might think they have already responded without realising they hadn’t. Others may be waiting until the deadline to find out if they are able to take time off.

Once the deadline has passed it is common to chase up the last few non-responders. I approached guests who hadn’t replied three times.

  • The first time with an email to make sure they got the invite (which was sent by email);
  • The second attempt at contact was via text message with a polite reminder;
  • The third approach was by phone call explaining that I needed an answer to submit final numbers to my suppliers.

If I received no answer then I cut my losses and removed them from my guest list.

It is hard to think that your wedding is not all that important to anyone EXCEPT YOU, but it is the truth. Knowing when to give up chasing people is crucial, however harsh and hurtful it may sound.

Dealing with unwanted suggestions

Ok, so here’s something that really gets a brides heckles up. It is a fact though and knowing how to cope with this will make your life much less stressful.

EVERYONE under the sun will make ‘suggestions‘ on how you should plan your wedding.

Whether its future in-laws, your own parents, or even colleagues, you will no doubt get offered (unwanted) suggestions.

This can be anything from what food or drinks to serve, what suppliers you should book, or even your guestlist!

After a while of getting battered with suggestions from all corners your head will spin. However it is extremely important to remember not to take it personally and try not to get too upset.

Best reponses for well meaning advisors

An easy way to manage this is to take a deep breath, and take yourself out of the situation mentally.

It’s often all to easy to say the first thing that comes to your mind. However, nine times out of ten you’ll end up hurting someone who may have good intentions.

Most people will be excited for you and will more than likely mean well. However, sometimes you may need to gently remind people that you are the bride and you have everything under control.

Here’s a few good responses you can use that will not cause offense:

  • “Thank you, I’ll add it to my list for consideration.”
  • “Thank you for your suggestion but I already have this covered.”

If someone is particularly persistent, then avoid bringing your wedding up in conversation if possible. If it’s not avoidable then being firm and direct will be the only way to handle this situation.

Summing up

These were a few things that I became VERY aware of throughout planning my wedding. I think I have navigated them well so far. Hopefully my wedding planning tips will help you to create a very special day.

I have largely DIY’d my wedding therefore I haven’t spent anywhere near as much as the national average wedding spend.

Giving such a long RSVP deadline wasn’t my brightest idea. However, it did enable all our travelling guests to book time off and be able to attend our wedding.

I’ve been lucky that family input has been helpful, however, I have had the unsolicited suggestions from all corners. Fortunately, these have mostly been good suggestions. However, I have had to use a couple of my lines to politely decline a not so good idea.

Did you enjoy my wedding planning tips?

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Wedding Planning

Update:

We got married!

It was beautiful, sunny, amazing and VERY us! We managed to pull it all together and have the most fantastic day we could ever have imagined.

Everyone says that the day goes by so fast and it’s so true! Savour every moment!

Everything went so smoothly and everyone had SO MUCH FUN!

P.s I’m a wifey now!! Read all about our fabulous quirky, DIY wedding here!

Until then…

Geez Louise Much Love

Well hello!! I created this blog to share my fitness routines, travel updates, musings on life and offer advice on wedding planning! Drop me a comment and say HI!

2 Comments

  • Jonas

    Oh boy, I think I will need to wait for some more years to ask my girlfriend to marry me. Otherwise I’ll be broke quite fast. Reading about your wedding planning, makes me realize there comes much more struggles by than I expected. Was it truly your best day in life, as people say it so much?

    • Louise O'Boyle

      I didn’t mean to frighten you but most brides do get carried away with the ‘perfect’ dress and ‘perfect’ venue etc. so knowing how to cut the costs is crucial! It was such a fabulous day full of love and happiness and it was the best day of my life so far. There’s hopefully plenty more days to come 😉

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