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 Creating a Budget for Your Destination Wedding
 02-11-11
Creating a Budget for Your Destination Wedding
 

You want your wedding to give you luxurious experiences and priceless memories. But you don't want to return from your destination wedding to be faced with debts and unnecessary feelings of guilt for not having stayed within a reasonable budget.

This should be the memory of a lifetime. You can make this event into anything your imagination allows. Pay attention to which experiences or details you would consider a "must have" and prioritize. As you work with your budget, stay focused on those top priority items and allow less "elaborate" solutions for lower priority items. If you stay true to your most important destination wedding objectives, the minor sacrifices along the way will barely be noticed.

Yes, this is a very romantic time... but try to remain realistic! Once you have an idea of your spending limits, your choices will be much easier to make.

Don't be discouraged if you're unable to spend an infinite amount of money on your wedding. Very few couples are able to live life so carefree. You can still experience a destination wedding that will leave you filled with those priceless memories... it's all in the planning!

GENERAL BUDGET

Many couples find that including a Honeymoon Registry instead of, or in addition to, their traditional Bridal Registry is a great way for friends and family to contribute to the trip. You can create your own Honeymoon Registry here at WeddingSolutions.com!

Some couples also include some version of a "Dollar Dance" at their reception. This is a great way for the bride and groom to dance with many of their guests while accepting the dollar "dance fee" as a contribution to their wedding or honeymoon. Some couples choose to pursue less romantic options for building up the wedding savings... part time jobs, yard sales, etc..

Whatever your methods may be, remember that increasing the amount of money you will spend does not automatically ensure a more pleasurable and enjoyable dream wedding. Your most important and effective resource is your commitment to planning. You will see that, regardless of what your budget limits may be, your wedding possibilities are endless.

Doing a budget analysis may be one of the most useful things you can do in planning your wedding. With all the options available, a good cost analysis will help make the most appropriate decisions very clear to you.

First, create a budget for what you think allows for an ideal, yet reasonable, destination wedding. Highlight those expenses which are top priorities. For example, the location may be the most important element for you. Or, perhaps the music or fine dining is more important than a the location.

Next, as you come across different destinations and options that appeal to you, fill in a budget worksheet. Compare the results to other potential locations and ideas. See how your priority items on each locations and idea compare to one another. Determine the pros and cons of each. This is also an effective way of looking at the pros and cons of an all-inclusive package versus an independently organized trip.

NOTE: Once you've decided on your wedding destination and activities, fill in a new budget as accurately as possible and take it with you. Use it to chart your expenses as they occur so you will have a visual guide of whether or not you are staying within budget.

If you find that you are going over your budget, take a look at those top priority items that you'd still like to keep. See if you can eliminate some lower priority items to free up some money for the favored ones.

If you find you are under budget, celebrate with a special "gift" for yourselves (massages, an extravagant dinner, another afternoon of jet skiing, etc.).
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