Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Things I Did Not Think About When Making my Wedding Budget

Budget Pig, originally uploaded by weddingssc1.
In a previous post I talked about how we had to take a realistic look at our budget and add in things like the cost of our wedding bands and the honeymoon, among other things, and discovered that we were going to be spending way more than we originally anticipated. From there I made a super detailed budget, which turned out to be not detailed enough since there were still several things I forgot to add.

From the start I should have looked online at budgets and I would have had a clearer picture of what to include. Once I did that I was on the right track. The Knot has a pretty good budget template but I really like the one on Google Docs (the style me pretty wedding planning template). I also got a ton of great advice things brides forgot to add to their budget from the ladies at Weddingbee on this post.

So here are a few of the more common things that brides tend to forget:

Service fee- Most of the venues we looked required this service fee which was 18-20% of the total catering cost. That’s a huge fee! I understand that the service staff works hard and should receive a gratuity but I'm not a fan of a mandatory fee, I think gratuity should be paid based on service I receive. Lucky for us, this fee is included in our per person cost, so I did not need to add it to our budget.

Tax- I did forget to add tax. When purchasing anything else, tax is pretty negligible to me, but when you are spending thousands on catering, the tax can add up and you have to take that into consideration.

Vendor Meals- Many vendor contracts require that you provide them with a meal. This is reasonable since they could be working for 6 or more hours and should be fed. It should not be a huge deal if you are having a buffet, but with a sit down dinner, you may have to pay your caterer for their plate. I've heard that most venues will give vendors a simple meal a greater discount than the guests meals, but my venue charges the same rate as the guest meal minus bar. So we had to add this to our budget.

Postage- Another one I heard over and over was postage. Postage for invites, return envelopes for RSVP's (if you are doing them), save the dates, and thank you cards. It really adds up.

There were also a lot of other things like out of town guests bags, gift wrap for bridal party gifts, rehearsal dinner, wedding night accommodations, undergarments, and the costs to fly to the Midwest from NYC for the wedding.

After all of this I think we finally have a comprehensive wedding budget. This is really important to us because we really don’t want to spend a penny more than we have to, and the best way to stick to a budget is to know exactly how much you can spend.

What were the little things you forgot to add to your budget?


  1. oh my goodness there are LOTS of things. Of course..it's little detail diy projects that I don't neccessarily need to do..but they're fun!!

    I'm so sorry...I know you asked to be added to my blogging brides page..what is your weddding date again? I think you told me but I can't remember!!

  2. Our wedding will be November 3, 2012!