How to Pay Less for a Wedding Dress

First comes love, then comes marriage. Then comes the mountain of wedding debt you’ll have to pay.

Last year, couples spent an average of $33,931 on weddings and nuptial-related events, according to TheKnot.com. While the venues, engagement ring and even entertainment can cost thousands of dollars, the wardrobe isn’t far down the list of top expenses. The average cost of the dress: $1,631.

If you’re looking to dress for less while still wearing a spectacular gown, there are plenty of options online. They include:

1. The Knot

Katielittle / Shutterstock.com

One of the largest wedding sites you’ll find, just sign up at the free website to browse thousands of dresses. They offer a custom search that can browse popular collections and sort by price. You can also search for dresses for other members of the wedding party.

2. House of Brides

Wedding photography / Shutterstock.com

At House of Brides, you’ll find wedding dresses and dresses for bridesmaids, mothers and flower girls.

3. Best Bridal Prices

Lana K / Shutterstock.com

Best Bridal Prices offers many options for dresses in several price ranges, including dozens that cost $200 to $400.

4. Amazon

Cherednychenko Ihor / Shutterstock.com

Amazon has everything, even wedding dresses. Both traditional and nontraditional, and including many plus-size options, Amazon has dozens of different designers, cuts, colors and styles for every type of bride.

5. Etsy

ginger_polina_bublik / Shutterstock.com

The online store for custom-made crafts and goods has hundreds of options by designers who may not have big-name brands but are making one-of-a-kind wedding gowns. Prices range from under $100 up into the thousands.

6. Once Wed

David Tadevosian / Shutterstock.com

The thing about wedding dresses is that they typically don’t have a chance to get worn out. As a result, looking into used gowns can pay off big time. Once Wed specializes in used designer dresses at much less than designer prices.

7. PreOwnedWeddingDresses.com

Popova Tetiana / Shutterstock.com

This is another great source of pre-owned dresses, including deeply discounted designer gowns.

8. Tradesy

Pro_Stock / Shutterstock.com

This site offers options in clothes, handbags, accessories and shoes along with wedding dresses, including authentic designer fashion.

9. eBay

Nina Buday / Shutterstock.com

Narrow your search by price, size and color. For some, you may have the option to bid or “buy it now.” Check out the groovy vintage dresses in your search. If you’re an Ebates user, you can save even more money by getting cash back on your eBay purchase.

10. Rentals

Mila Supinskaya Glashchenko / Shutterstock.com

Some bridal shops that sell dresses also rent them, although there are also specialized boutiques that offer rental-only dresses. While renting eliminates the hassle of trying to sell a dress you bought, look out for a damage deposit — often a $200 upfront fee.

11. Consignment shops

Rishiken / Shutterstock.com

Keep a lookout for consignment shops that specialize in wedding dresses. Many women who buy new, high-end fashion sell their old goods through consignment.

12. Thrift stores

SpeedKingz / Shutterstock.com

Finding a dress here might take some extra digging, but secondhand stores carry all kinds of treasures, wedding dresses among them. Use TheThriftShopper.com to search for a store near you.

13. Discount department stores

Fizkes / Shutterstock.com

If you’re looking for a nontraditional dress, browse Ross, Marshalls, T.J. Maxx and even Target for less expensive dresses that aren’t strictly wedding dresses. A less formal dress can be perfectly acceptable, depending on the ceremony setting and your personal taste.

14. Frocks from family and friends

IVASHstudio / Shutterstock.com

Does your mother, grandmother or sister have a wedding dress she kept? What about friends who have tied the knot? You could land a dress for only the cost of dry cleaning and a bit of tailoring.

Where did you get an affordable wedding dress? Tell us your story on our Facebook page.

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.

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.

Read Next
9 Items Under $25 That Will Keep Your House Clean
9 Items Under $25 That Will Keep Your House Clean

We’ve rounded up some of the best products for cleaning your bathroom, kitchen and every other room.

8 Things You Should Rent Instead of Buying
8 Things You Should Rent Instead of Buying

You may think you’re looking at a must-have purchase. But do the numbers and think twice.

3 Reasons You Can’t Rely on Medicare Alone
3 Reasons You Can’t Rely on Medicare Alone

Counting on Medicare to cover health care costs can jeopardize your retirement plans.

5 Surveys For Money Sites To Get Paid For Your Opinion
5 Surveys For Money Sites To Get Paid For Your Opinion

Yes, you can earn extra cash by taking online surveys. But some websites are better than others for this. Here are a few of our favorites.

8 Retailers That Offer Free Prescription Drug Delivery
8 Retailers That Offer Free Prescription Drug Delivery

You won’t have to leave the safety of home to get prescriptions if you use these pharmacies.

View this page without ads

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

Get Started

Most Popular
This Gas Station Scam Is Victimizing More Drivers
This Gas Station Scam Is Victimizing More Drivers

For the second straight year, a growing number of Americans believe they’ve fallen prey to this scam.

9 Things You’ll Never See at Costco Again
9 Things You’ll Never See at Costco Again

The warehouse store offers an enormous selection, but these products aren’t coming back.

This Is the Most Popular Age for Claiming Social Security
This Is the Most Popular Age for Claiming Social Security

Both men and women are most likely to start receiving Social Security benefits at this age.

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.

The 15 Worst States for Retirees in 2020
The 15 Worst States for Retirees in 2020

Based on dozens of metrics tied to affordability, quality of life and health care, these are not ideal places to spend retirement.

Could You Give Up These 7 Expenses to Save Thousands of Dollars a Year?
Could You Give Up These 7 Expenses to Save Thousands of Dollars a Year?

You could save more than $30,000 by setting aside these costly expenses for just one year.

6 Things You Should Never Buy at Trader Joe’s
6 Things You Should Never Buy at Trader Joe’s

We love Trader Joe’s for plenty of reasons. But think twice about this handful of products.

Don’t Toss These 7 Household Items — Sell Them
Don’t Toss These 7 Household Items — Sell Them

Here’s how to earn cash as you give new life to these unwanted items.

6 Legal Documents Retirees Need — but Don’t Have
6 Legal Documents Retirees Need — but Don’t Have

Few retirees have these documents that are crucial to their golden years — especially during a pandemic.

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.

11 Expenses That Quietly Drain Your Wallet
11 Expenses That Quietly Drain Your Wallet

It’s scandalously easy to overspend in these areas of your life.

9 Dumb Ways You Are Ruining Your Home Value
9 Dumb Ways You Are Ruining Your Home Value

Homeowners, beware these mistakes that can drive away potential buyers.

3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free
3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free

With a little ingenuity, you can cut Office costs to zero.

This Is the Cheapest Place to Buy a Used Car
This Is the Cheapest Place to Buy a Used Car

Looking for a good deal on a set of wheels? This should be your first stop.

10 Things That Really Are Free on Amazon
10 Things That Really Are Free on Amazon

These freebies are available to anyone — no Prime membership necessary.

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?

11 Disgusting Household Items You Should Toss Already
11 Disgusting Household Items You Should Toss Already

Never keep these items past their prime.

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

These practical products make everyday life a little easier.

10 Surprising Foods You Can Freeze — and How I Freeze Them
10 Surprising Foods You Can Freeze — and How I Freeze Them

How many of the foods have you thought to put in the freezer?

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.