Yes, getting married in New York means you have instant access to some of the most elite wedding vendors and best resources in the country, but it also means you’ll be saying your vows in one of the most expensive cities in the country.
There are ways to avoid amassing a massive debt when saying “I do.” CBSNewYork spoke to Brides.com New York editor Lauren Matthews for her tips when it comes to saving money and booking a budget wedding in New York City.
Timing Is (Almost) Everything
Get married on a Friday (hey, Prince William & Kate Middleton did it!) or a Sunday afternoon.
“It can save you around 20 percent on everything,” said Matthews.
Picking an off-season date can also help you pinch pennies.
“January, February, July and August are the least popular months to get married in New York City, so vendors are dying to book them.”
Keep The Guest List Small
When it comes to trimming down costs, start with this question: How many people are receiving an invitation?
“It may seem obvious, but [it’s] the number one way to save, since 50 percent of your budget will go to catering and costs per head,” said Matthews.
Consider the size of the wedding party. Don’t feel obligated to include anyone because you feel it’s polite.
“If you can get away with just having a maid of honor and a best man – I’m seeing tons of couples do this lately – you’ll save hundreds on wedding party bouquets, boutonnieres and gifts.”
Book A Venue With In-House Services
Choosing a venue that offers catering or comes with chair and table rentals will do more than save you money – it will make your life easier by eliminating some of your planning headaches.
“Lofts and raw spaces are super popular wedding venues in NYC, but they actually come with a lot of hidden costs,” said Matthews. “You’ll have to decorate the space from scratch – meaning lots of pricey rentals – and bring in all your own vendors.”
Being Clear About Your Budget With Vendors
When dealing with caterers or other vendors, don’t be shy about how much you’re willing to spend.
“Let them know you’re a fan and would love to work with them, but be up front about the money you have to spend,” said Matthews. “A creative, talented vendor should be able to work with you and come up with solutions that let you achieve the aesthetic you want without overspending.”
Ditch Wedding Favors
Skip the souvenirs – your guests probably won’t even notice, and there are alternative ways to send them off with a memory.
“I’ve seen a lot of brides recently ask their photographers to set up do-it-yourself photo booth stations, and guests have so much fun with them.”