Wedding Costs Soar: Here Are Ways to Save When You Say ‘I Do’

Maria Mikhailenko /

Brides and grooms are spending a record amount of money to walk down the aisle and say “I do.” The average cost of a wedding in 2016 hit $35,329 — a whopping 8 percent hike in one year.

According to The Knot’s newly released 2016 Real Weddings study, where you get married plays a massive role in determining wedding costs. The Knot explains:

Tying the knot in, say, Manhattan could cost an average of $78,464, while an Arkansas wedding will average at $19,522.

But buying a wedding dress, ordering flowers, renting a wedding venue and paying other costs should not leave you drowning in a sea of debt.

If you plan on getting hitched but want so save some cash, we highlight some great ways to do so in “15 Ways to Save Big on Your Dream Wedding.” They include:

  • Be selective. Only invite people you really love to your wedding. That may sound harsh, but once you consider the cost for each of your wedding guests — The Knot says it’s increased from an average of $194 in 2009 to $245 per guest today — it makes monetary sense to try and keep your guest numbers small and manageable.
  • Pick a naturally beautiful location. Wedding venues can take a sizable chunk out of a wedding budget. But you might be able to avoid the high cost by selecting an attractive outside location that doesn’t need many, if any, decorations.
  • Reconsider the traditional open bar. Many wedding budgets have been blown out of the water by thirsty wedding guests who try and take full advantage of an open bar. If you don’t want a no-host cash bar at your big day, you may want to limit the drink options available — think house red and white wines — or other less expensive drinks.

Discover the other 12 tips by reading our story. They can help you avoid expensive wedding pitfalls and rip-offs.

For more ways to protect your money on the big day, check out “How to Avoid 5 Common Wedding Rip-Offs.”

Are you surprised at how much money some people shell out to say “I do”? Share your thoughts below or on Facebook.

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