Wedding invite? How not to blow the budget

wedding invitationWe are at the entry of the prime-time wedding season. While weddings can be a lot of fun (tell me what club has such a cross-section of demographics on the dance floor. Worth it for people watching alone) they can also be super expensive.

As the invites begin to arrive in your mailbox, think about your budget.  Here are a few things to consider before you RSVP:

Say no?

Just because you are invited, does not automatically mean that you have to attend. It may not make sense logistically or from a budget standpoint for you to attend the wedding, and if either of these apply, you are well within your social engagement rights to say no.

However, consider what may happen if you do. If this is a close friend/family member there may be some hurt feelings involved. Make sure you touch base with the bride and/or groom to explain your absence.

Oh- and you are still expected to send at least a modest gift.

Creative gifting

Buy the gift ahead of time, so that you’ve got time to plan your purchase (and still grab good stuff from the registry).

To save on the gift, think about things like doing a group gift with other guests, or consider swapping some of your services with the bride and groom. Are you a baker or musician? Maybe they could use your help during the ceremony or dinner.

Some travel required

Wedding out of town? Expect to spend on plane, train or automobile to get there. Don’t forget about hotels while you are there too.

Shave down these expenses by carpooling with other guests, and seeing if you have a long-lost relative or forgotten college roommate that you could bunk in with for the night.

Those extras

You know you need to spend money on a gift, but don’t forget about things like an outfit, babysitting, cab fare or parking.

These little extras have a way of adding up to a lot. Anticipate these expenses, so you don’t have to pay more than you should- which is what happens often when you don’t plan ahead.