Just said yes to being a bridesmaid or groomsmen? Honored to be involved and stand beside your friend or relative on their big day, but worried about the cost of travel, outfits and accommodation (and hair… and make-up… and accessories)? Jackie Warrick, Senior Savings Advisor at Save.co.uk, guest blogs this week with tips for how you can best serve in the bridal party, without breaking the bank.
You may have recently read The Reflective Bride’s article about How to be a Good Bridal Party Member, and whilst it’s important to follow this advice, it can be difficult to be close to the bride or groom without completely maxing out your credit card and spending more on their happy day than you can really afford!
Check out some of the tips below and see if you can keep in with the happy couple and keep your bank manager happy at the same time!
Tips for Bridesmaids
• You don’t have to stay in the same hotel as the bride! Just ensure you’re with her while she’s getting ready and she’ll be grateful. Why not bunk up with some other guests in a nearby B&B – you’ll save money and chances are no one will even realise!
• These days, bridal showers and hen nights are getting more and more expensive. Often they take place in a foreign city for a three-day event. Why not suggest a whistle-stop tour of all the places that mean something to the bride and groom. You can stop for lunch and drinks along the way. Romantic and the whole party will have fun!
• Before spending lots of money on professional make up and a fancy up-do, see if any of the other bridesmaids have skills in that department. If no one in the bridal party can quite work the technique of the braided bun, why not have your hair done at the same place and time and ask for a group discount. Most salons will cut their rates for large groups.
• It can be difficult to buy your bride and groom a wedding gift that shows how much they mean to you without your bank manager giving you an angry phone call! Why not check out Pinterest and visit Save.co.uk for wedding gift inspiration and voucher codes to make your present that little bit cheaper!
• Whilst it’s completely acceptable for your bride to ask you to pay for your wedding outfit, make sure you go shopping with her so she doesn’t choose something you dislike or won’t be able to afford. If the dress is out of your price range, why not look at renting the dress instead of buying – chances are you won’t plan on wearing the dress again anyway!
• If the bride is happy with you wearing your own shoes and jewelry then don’t feel like you have to buy new ones. The perfect shoes are probably just hiding at the back of your wardrobe!
Tips for Groomsmen
• As a groomsmen, one of your duties will be organizing the best stag do possible. It’s easy to get carried away planning week-long booze cruises, but remember the invitees might include the bride and groom’s fathers, broke younger brothers and possibly grandfathers… so make sure everyone is happy with the choice of venue and price!
• If you’re worried about travelling to the venue, don’t be shy about asking your fellow groomsmen if you can hitch a lift with them. Filling up a car will be cheaper and easier than going by plane, train or your own automobile, and by sharing the ride you’ll be helping the environment, too!
• When it comes to the suit, a lot of places will offer reductions if the whole party is renting from the same place. It’s always worth inquiring if they’ll offer a discount. Most can give a discretionary 10% off just for asking!
• If you’re worrying about spending money on a gift, why not offer your time instead? If you’re a keen photographer, organise an engagement photo-shoot for the happy couple or if you’re a secret Paul Hollywood, why not offer to make the wedding cake – no one need ever know it was you!
Jackie Warrick has been with voucher and savings site Save.co.uk.com for nearly five years and knows a thing or two about saving money. As Save.co.uk‘s senior savings adviser, she has offered her insight to countless media outlets, including national television programs, major daily newspapers and savings blogs.
(All but second image provided by blogger.)