We’ve been talking about wedding costs lately, and today we’re all about wedding myths- cost saving wedding myths to be exact! I’ve heard way too many of these lately, and quite honestly, I have NO idea where they came from. So it’s time to get rid of these myths once and for all! Let’s begin, shall we?
Myth: Things cost more just because they have the word “wedding” in them.
Truth: This may be the case when you’re looking at things from the outside, but it’s not because the word “wedding” is involved.
I can tell you that if there is a different price tag associated with something for a “party” versus a “wedding”, you’re wrong. Weddings are *different* than parties. A party has the opportunity to happen more than once. A wedding presumably does not.
As a result, you put more of an emphasis on your wedding day. You want it to be amazing and memorable. It’s why you spend more money on a wedding than you would a birthday party (unless it’s the norm for you to have extravagant birthday parties), right? So why WOULDN’T you expect things to cost differently?
A product or service associated with a wedding typically is more demanding than that of a simple party. A wedding requires more emails. More calls. More planning. More logistics. It. Is. Different. And I’m pretty sure there would be a lot of upset couples if they weren’t receiving the level of service and additional communication that is expected with a wedding. A wedding requires a higher level of service, and as a result, might come with a higher price tag.
[Read this: Is The Wedding Industry Scamming You?]
Note: Now sure, there are indeed people who don’t change their level of service, yet still increase their prices just because the word wedding is in them. But this is NOT the norm. To avoid running into this issue, be sure to ask what is included for the price you’re paying.
Myth: It’s cheaper if you have your wedding on a day other than Saturday.
Truth: For the most part, this is oh-so-wrong. It’s now pretty common for a wedding to take place on a day such as a Friday or Sunday. Now a weekday, that’s a different story. This myth does have different aspects though, so let’s discuss:
Vendors: A wedding vendor is going to work just as hard if your wedding is on a Friday or a Sunday. They’re not going to put in less hours of work just because it’s not a Saturday. Plus, it’s actually becoming REALLY common for Friday and Sunday weddings- even Thursdays too! Besides, do you really want to ask your vendors to half-ass it on your wedding day? (Not saying that they actually would) Yeah, I didn’t think so. Some vendors who aren’t already booked fully for that weekend may offer a discount. But don’t expect to get cheaper prices if your wedding is on a day other than Saturday. Myth DEBUNKED when dealing with most service vendors.
Venues: Some venues offer food & beverage services and some don’t. So right there we have a difference that determines pricing. Some venues may offer a discounted rate for days other than Saturday. I think this is going to be more likely when the venue is not offering food or beverage- just the rental of the space. Myth NOT debunked when dealing with venues.
For both of the “categories” that we’re looking at, some are looking at the days as “weekend” days, which to me is Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Now Thursday or Tuesday (or Monday or Wednesday), is a different story, and I have definitely seen discounts offered for weekday weddings.
Myth: Doing it all ourselves will save us money (aka DIY and with the help of family and friends).
Truth: This of course can pertain to several different aspects of a wedding. But most of the time, for the retail price of buying something, you can pay a professional to do it for you, whether it’s buying wholesale or you renting it from them. It’s a funny thing how many people who are DIYing their weddings always end up spending more money than they thought they would. It just doesn’t look like it because it’s in small increments here and there. I’ve over-purchased for plenty of DIY projects myself. (If you want to DIY to include friends and family in your wedding, DIY things that can easily be DIY’d. And definitely know exactly how much of everything you need!) If you stick to the pros for things, chances are really good that you’ll end up saving your money. Myth DEBUNKED.
[Read this: WHAT IS A DIY WEDDING?]
Myth: Haggle, barter, or low-ball with vendors to get a lower price.
Truth: O.M.G. I have no idea where this one started, but it needs to end! Haggling with vendors on their prices is crazy- they’ve set their prices because that’s what they need to do the work they do. Bartering, now this depends on what you’re bartering with, but the things that I’ve heard so far haven’t been ideal for wedding vendors. If you have a business that you can barter with that they can truly get a benefit from, then by all means I’m sure someone will bite. However, if you’re trying to barter with something that a vendor really can’t benefit from, then that’s a big fat no. And then finally we have low-balling vendor prices. I’ve heard of this happening a lot lately too. Saying that you really can only afford the bare minimum but want them to provide more and trying to make them feel guilty? Yikes, not cool. In a nutshell: Don’t try to mess with vendor pricing. It is what it is, and it’s usually already at the lowest point it can be because people in the wedding industry aren’t doing it to make a fortune- they’re doing it because they love weddings! :) Myth DEBUNKED.
[Read this: WHY YOU SHOULDN’T NEGOTIATE WITH WEDDING VENDORS]
Myth: Buffets are cheaper than plated dinners.
Truth: I’m not experienced in catering/food in any way, but I do know this: buffets sometimes require MORE food than plated meals do, and so they can end up being more expensive, depending on the number of guests you have and types of food being served. Buffets are an option that entail less serving staff, so they are less expensive in that manner. Of course all of this is dependent on how many guests you have! Myth sometimes DEBUNKED.
Myth: Cocktail style receptions are less expensive because you need “less food” than a sit down dinner.
Truth: Another food-related one, but I can help with this too. Yes, cocktail receptions don’t have a full-out meal. They do, however, have a lot more appetizers and small bites, which could add up to just as much food as if you were having meals served. And then, since it’s “cocktail-style”, guests are definitely going to be drinking more. Cocktail-style receptions do require serving staff like sit down dinners do, so you will still be paying for the service. And again, this comes back around being dependent on how many guests you have! Myth sometimes DEBUNKED.
Myth: “I have a friend/family member that can do ___, so we won’t be needing to hire anyone for that”.
Truth: Ah, but of course! Everyone always knows someone who can do photography, planning, DJ, food, etc. BUT it always turns out that they forget that they want to be guests and end up a) slacking on what they’re supposed to be doing or b) backing out altogether, leaving you to have to pay someone. Trust me and tell the friend/family members that you want them to enjoy the wedding. Neither you or them will regret it. Myth DEBUNKED.
Myth: “My mother (or aunt or friend, etc) is going to do the flowers in silk to save money.”
Truth: OMG silk flowers cost so much! And they always LOOK silk- I don’t care how good you are at arranging flowers, those plastic “veins” on the flowers are a dead giveaway. Bottom line for this one- silk flowers are NOT going to save you money. Myth DEBUNKED.
Myth: Destination weddings cost less.
Truth: Usually not, but it depends. If it’s you and your fiance eloping, then yes, it’s going to be less than a wedding. If you’re inviting family members, there are more events that have to be held and more things that need to be taken of. Transportation, rooms, welcome dinners, rehearsal dinners, wedding dinner, breakfasts. Not to mention what it costs for your guests to get there. Get my drift? If you want to do a destination wedding, know that it’s not going to be less than what a wedding would be in your own town. (Again dependent on numbers and many other factors. I will be having a destination wedding PRO do a post on this in the future!) Myth DEBUNKED.
Alright, I think these are enough myths to debunk for one day, what do you say?
Remember- everyone has their own situations, and these are based on “normal” situations. Everything for weddings is almost always dependent on the number of guests and individual choices. There is no way to determine any one perfect situation. :)
[Editor’s note: Please know that I polled my followers to find out what “myths” they often hear about from their clients. Most of those who responded were wedding professionals with extensive experience (AKA I didn’t pull these “myths” out of thin air). Please remember that the “debunking” of these myths are based on my experiences and opinions. There are always different situations that can determine different outcomes for pricing, how things end up, etc. All of this is based on extremely general circumstances. I have elaborated on some aspects of this post since it’s original posting, and I will go into further detail with other posts on these matters in the future. I welcome other opinions and experiences, so please feel free to share your own in the comments- just please do it nicely and with a smile! :) ]
A version of this post was originally posted in June 2011.