Being 25 is expensive. I’m at a point in my life where a lot of my friends are getting engaged and married and it is so exciting! I absolutely love weddings, but I definitely don’t love what they do to my bank account. I have 3 weddings this year and they are all out of state. Yep. All of them. If everyone could coordinate to fit my schedule next time, that would be great.
Because of my busy wedding schedule this year, I have learned a few tips and tricks that I want to share with all of you. Most importantly, start saving now! If you know you have a wedding coming up, set aside a little bit here and there so you aren’t paying a ton of money all at once.
I’m a huge fan of lists, so here is the list I have to make sure I don’t miss anything major. This will obviously vary if you’re not in the wedding party, or the wedding is local, but I thought I would cover all of my bases to be safe.
Plane Tickets: There are so many ways to find great deals now. I found an app called “Hopper” that I have been using recently and I love it! You just put in your travel dates and airports and the app will track flight prices for you. It will alert you when prices change and if better prices are predicted in the future so you can buy your tickets at the right time.
Bridal Shower Gift: My rule is usually to spend around $50 on a bridal shower gift. If you’re not able to attend, at least send a card… especially if you’re in the wedding party. Make sure the bride knows you’re thinking of her on this special day!
Bachelorette Party Gift: A group gift from the bridesmaids (think Victoria’s Secret gift card) is a great and easy way to go. That way, you all contribute towards something the bride will use and you can even all go together with the bride to pick something out for their first night together as husband and wife.
Wedding Outfit/Bridesmaid Essentials: If you can wear a dress and shoes from another event, you go girl! That is definitely a good way to save money. If you’re a bridesmaid, be prepared to set aside a good chunk of money here. You can pretty much guarantee that you will need to pay for your dress, alterations and shoes (break these in ahead of time).
Brides often give jewelry as a gift to their bridesmaids, but if that isn’t the case, that may be an extra expense as well. The last wedding I was in we also paid to get our nails, spray tans, makeup and hair done before the wedding. Check in with the bride to see what she has in mind. *Make sure you have money to tip the pros for all of that also!
DO NOT PUT YOUR BRIDESMAID DRESS AND SHOES IN YOUR CHECKED LUGGAGE! You can check it on the way home, but if your bag gets lost, everything can be replaced except for these two essential items! Save yourself the headache and carry them on with you!
Wedding Gift: Yes, your presence alone is much appreciated, but you still need to get a gift. Lucky for us, they have this nifty thing called a registry! No need to stress over what to get the happy couple, they want what’s on their registry. I usually set aside $100 for a wedding present. If nothing is in your price range, buddy up with a friend to afford a nice gift.
Hotel + Transportation: Most couples will block out rooms with a special wedding rate at hotels close to the venue. Another option is renting through AirBnB or VRBO with a few friends so it’s cheaper for everyone and you’re all together to get to and from locations. I would definitely suggest booking this at least a few months in advance if you can.
There are so many easy ways to get around now with companies like Uber and Lyft, but price it out for yourself. Will it be cheaper to rent a car if there is a group of you staying together? It might be! Make sure to do your research.
Day-of Card for The Bride: I would say this really only applies if you’re in the wedding party. If you’re a bridesmaid, get the bride a card to give her that morning while you’re getting ready and write a little note about how much you love and appreciate her friendship. She chose you to stand up there with her on the biggest day of her life, and that is really special! I usually throw something funny in there as well… it calms the bridal nerves and helps keep the makeup in tact.
I’m sure I missed things, but these are the major necessities and expenses I save for! Tag me in pictures of you at your friends weddings, I love to see the gorgeous outfits you guys wear! xo