I think it’s really important that couples should be made aware of hidden costs when getting married. When planning a wedding, the number one thing that overwhelms most couples is budgeting. From the beginning, it is vital that you speak openly about your budget, have an honest conversation about money before you start and most importantly, stay on top of your finances throughout. Here is my guide to the hidden costs you should be aware so that you don’t get any unpleasant surprises along the way.
If you are planning on getting married at a church, organists, bell ringers and choirs will be additional costs. Speak to your church to find out what these charges are.
When you start your wedding dress shopping journey, you will know how much you want to spend. Just bear in mind that you should save some of that budget for alterations. Your dress, when it arrives at the bridal shop, will need altering by a seamstress, it won’t arrive ready to wear. Ask the bridal shop what alterations the dress is likely to need and what they charge for those alterations.
VAT & service charges
Not all wedding suppliers will need to charge VAT, however those that do, particularly caterers and venues, when 20% is added on to their invoices, it can add thousands of pounds that you hadn’t factored for. Make sure you ask your suppliers if their charges are inclusive or exclusive of VAT or if any service charges will be added. I cannot stress how important it is that you ask these questions before you sign any contracts.
Sending invitations can be costly, make sure you budget for the postage costs. It is also important to budget for any delivery costs that your suppliers may charge. Florists, furniture deliveries will sometimes charge a fee over a certain distance, ask them.
Meals for suppliers
Some suppliers stipulate in their contracts that you will need to provide them with a hot meal and refreshments. Although they won’t expect to eat what you and your guests are eating, it is important to factor in the number of mouths that you need to feed. Speak to your venue/caterer to find out what they can provide and what the costs will be.
Many venues allow couples to bring their own alcohol, however may add a corkage fee. You need to calculate if this is a cost effective option.
Ask your stationer if the envelopes are included in the price of your stationary. These could be additional and can quite quickly add up if you need large volumes.
Clean up costs
If your wedding is a blank canvas, such as a marquee, you need to factor in clean up costs. Rubbish removal, stacking and the folding of chairs, cleaning of bathrooms are all going to be charged.
Ahead of a wedding, we all like to pamper ourselves, maybe it’s a manicure/pedicure, or a facial, these all cost money. Hair and makeup trials are also charged, make sure when you are making enquiries that you ask how much they charge.
After the wedding
Once the wedding is over, it is natural to think you’re done spending money, but don’t be too hasty. Things to factor in-there might be damages to hired items, thank you cards (and envelopes) and the postage you need to send them, dry cleaning your wedding dress and any photo albums (if it isn’t included in your photography package).