5 Wedding Rip-Offs — and How to Avoid Them

Your wedding day is only going to happen once — at least that is the plan — so the instinct can be to ignore the costs and try to make everything just perfect. Indeed, the average 2019 wedding in the U.S. cost $33,900, according to The Knot website.

While stretching the budget might make sense for such a special occasion, you don’t want to get scammed in the process. To avoid such a sad fate, watch out for these rip-offs.

1. Counterfeit dresses

Discovering that a dress is a counterfeit is sure to ruin a bride’s big day. One common scam involves a dress — particularly one ordered online — being passed off as a high-quality designer product. Instead, what arrives is a knock-off made from inferior materials and construction.

So, look at the label. There are federal requirements about what needs to appear on a label. Check out the Federal Trade Commission website for more information.

Also, consider buying at a brick-and-mortar shop, and be sure of the return policy before you order. Use a credit card so you will have some recourse if the shop is shady.

Speaking of wedding attire, you don’t have to pay full price. Check out “How to Pay Less for a Wedding Dress.”

2. Vanishing vendors

People sometimes pose as DJs, photographers, florists — pretty much any of the outside contractors you might employ — then take your deposit and vanish. Make sure you check everyone out. Websites like The Knot, WeddingWire and the Better Business Bureau can help you with reviews for vendors in your area.

Also, don’t forget word of mouth. If you loved the flowers at a friend’s wedding, ask her about the florist and whether there were any behind-the-scenes problems. Also, ask your venue if it has a list of reputable vendors with whom it often does business.

3. Bridal show shenanigans

Bridal shows can be overwhelming, thanks to the variety of different products and services available. Be wary of signing up for giveaways. That honeymoon hotel stay might not include taxes, let alone the airfare to get you there and back.

Remember, once you hand over your name address and phone number, it might become fair game to be sold and resold to other people and businesses. Always read the fine print, understand the privacy policy and be careful about which businesses and people you share your information with.

4. Gift theft

Hopefully, you don’t have to worry about friends and family walking off with a gift. However, there will be a lot of other people around at the wedding and reception.

Some venues — hotels, for instance — will have plenty of people unrelated to the wedding coming and going throughout the day. Avoid losses by placing the gift table far from the doors, and deputize a family member to keep an eye on it.

If you’re attending a wedding, check out “31 Inspired Wedding Gifts That Keep on Giving.”

5. Home burglary

Placing a wedding announcement in your local newspaper is a rite of passage. It’s also a good way to broadcast that you won’t be home that day. And if you include the dates of your honeymoon, you’ve given burglars a nice big window of opportunity.

Don’t be afraid to share the news of your big day, but make sure neighbors will keep an eye on your place for any signs of trouble. And before the honeymoon, remember to do all the usual preparations for taking a long trip, such as stopping the mail, newspaper and other deliveries.

Also, let your credit card companies know when and where you’ll be traveling so your purchases from out-of-the-way places don’t prompt your lenders to shut down your cards.

How to find cheaper car insurance in minutes

Getting a better deal on car insurance doesn't have to be hard. You can have The Zebra, an insurance comparison site compare quotes in just a few minutes and find you the best rates. Consumers save an average of $368 per year, according to the site, so if you're ready to secure your new rate, get started now.

Read Next
8 Things I Always Buy at Costco
8 Things I Always Buy at Costco

From bacon to birthday cakes, here are my favorite deals at the popular warehouse store.

7 Gadgets Under $60 That Can Boost Your Health
7 Gadgets Under $60 That Can Boost Your Health

These Amazon finds can help ease foot aches, boost energy and even protect your heart.

8 Ways to Slash Your Internet Bill
8 Ways to Slash Your Internet Bill

No matter what price you are paying for internet service, taking these simple steps can lower it.

It’s Worth Paying Extra for These 14 Items
It’s Worth Paying Extra for These 14 Items

Here’s where to find the sweet spot at the intersection of price and quality.

8 Common and Costly Homebuying Myths
8 Common and Costly Homebuying Myths

Think you’re ready to buy a house? Don’t fall victim to these rookie mistakes.

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Most Popular
Will I Get My Ex-Husband’s Social Security When He Dies?
Will I Get My Ex-Husband’s Social Security When He Dies?

Two factors determine how much money is coming to you.

7 Ways to Boost Your Credit Score Fast
7 Ways to Boost Your Credit Score Fast

Your financial security might soon depend upon the strength of your credit score.

16 Amazon Purchases That We Are Loving Right Now
16 Amazon Purchases That We Are Loving Right Now

These practical products make everyday life a little easier.

22 Things You Should Always Buy at a Dollar Store
22 Things You Should Always Buy at a Dollar Store

The dollar store has great bargains on these purchases.

5 Household Disinfectants That Can Destroy the Coronavirus
5 Household Disinfectants That Can Destroy the Coronavirus

You likely already have some of these products at home.

20 Things That Are Actually Worth Stockpiling
20 Things That Are Actually Worth Stockpiling

You probably don’t need a year’s supply of toilet paper to survive an outbreak, but consider stocking up on these items.

6 Reasons I Will Never Trust Suze Orman
6 Reasons I Will Never Trust Suze Orman

Beware: The self-proclaimed personal finance expert has a track record that suggests more sizzle than steak.

America’s Most Reliable Appliance Brand Is a Surprise
America’s Most Reliable Appliance Brand Is a Surprise

Have you heard of this appliance manufacturer?

This Type of Social Security Benefit Is Often Overlooked
This Type of Social Security Benefit Is Often Overlooked

The Social Security Administration is not helping certain people get money to which they are entitled, a report says.

Getting These 2 Shots Could Reduce Your Risk of Dementia
Getting These 2 Shots Could Reduce Your Risk of Dementia

These vaccines may lower the risk of Alzheimer’s disease by up to 40%.

9 Everyday Problems You Can Solve With Vaseline
9 Everyday Problems You Can Solve With Vaseline

Forget expensive specialty products. Good ol’ petroleum jelly can address many common annoyances.

19 Purchases That Buyers Almost Always Regret
19 Purchases That Buyers Almost Always Regret

Think twice before buying these things.

19 High-Paying Jobs You Can Get With a 2-Year Degree
19 High-Paying Jobs You Can Get With a 2-Year Degree

These jobs pay more than the typical job in the U.S. — and no bachelor’s degree is required.

7 Tips for Building an Emergency Stockpile
7 Tips for Building an Emergency Stockpile

A pandemic or natural disaster could leave you reliant on your existing food supply. Is your pantry prepared?

8 of the Worst Things to Buy at a Dollar Store
8 of the Worst Things to Buy at a Dollar Store

Not everything sold at dollar stores is a great bargain or a safe purchase. Here’s our list of products to avoid.

41 Things You Should Never Buy
41 Things You Should Never Buy

Some purchases are just plain dumb. Give yourself — and your budget — a break. Don’t spend money on this stuff.

5 Ways to Get Amazon Prime for Free
5 Ways to Get Amazon Prime for Free

Hesitant to drop $119 a year on an Amazon Prime membership? Here’s how to get it for free.

7 Ways to Shop at Costco Without a Membership
7 Ways to Shop at Costco Without a Membership

You don’t necessarily need to join to get in on the warehouse store’s savings.

13 Brilliant Bulk-Buy Items on Amazon
13 Brilliant Bulk-Buy Items on Amazon

Every household should have these products on hand. Buying them in bulk on Amazon saves you cash.

View More Articles

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Add a Comment

Our Policy: We welcome relevant and respectful comments in order to foster healthy and informative discussions. All other comments may be removed. Comments with links are automatically held for moderation.