After Chris proposed and we decided we wanted to get married in the spring, my immediate thought was “how are we going to afford a wedding?” Then I was laid-off from work and the need to budget for our upcoming wedding grew even stronger. Here’s my no. 1 tip that I can’t repeat enough.
We weren’t swimming in extra money and I knew weddings could be very expensive, so the first thing I googled after getting engaged was “how to save money on a wedding” or something like that. There are lots of great articles with great tips, so I won’t bore you with them here. But the one I thought was best and still do, was this:
If you live in a city, look around at the smaller towns surrounding you for wedding venues. They may offer something similar but for a much less expensive rate.
I’m paraphrasing, but that was the gist. And seriously, it was the best tip. We looked at places all over Vegas and couldn’t find just the right fit. We didn’t want a wedding chapel, but something more complete and traditional. We’re not regular churchgoers so that didn’t feel right either. I preferred an outdoor wedding, with an indoor reception, and wanted a little flexibility on the menu, decorations, etc. Chris is a musician and wanted to bring in a band to play, but I wanted a DJ to play dance music so we’d need a space that could accommodate both scenarios.
I researched having a wedding outdoors in a public park or in a state park, and although those options look lovely, the real-life cons of having our wedding there wouldn’t work for the level of stress each would bring me. Plus, I’m happy to DIY some of the wedding but not all, considering at some point that day I’d actually have to get ready and get married. At the end of my research I figured the stress wasn’t worth the few dollars we’d save going completely DIY.
I was stressed and discouraged with our options until I read the tip about going just outside your city on someone’s website. At the time I didn’t save it, but I wish I had to give him/her credit for that one. It’s such a good tip. Surrounding Vegas we have several smaller towns, and we happen to be getting married in one of them.
I found Mountain Falls Golf Club on WeddingWire, and there was a review that suggested the venue would be great. I looked it up online, emailed the wedding coordinator, and she was super responsive. I love that. Chris and I traveled the hour out of Vegas to Pahrump to see the golf course, and knew almost instantly we wanted to have our wedding there. It checked all our boxes and the price allowed us to feel comfortable actually having a wedding and not feel super overwhelmed by the cost of it all. Don’t get me wrong, we watched our spending on most everything we could, but with saving money on the venue, it alleviated a ton of stress from wedding planning. So for us, this definitely was the best tip I read.
I wanted to share it because I know many other brides across the country run up against the same thing when thinking about options for their weddings, and this little nugget allowed us to have a real wedding with people we love in a space we’re proud of but could actually afford.