Catering, seating arrangements, invitations! The long list of to-do’s on your wedding planning checklist is enough to drive even the toughest bride-to-be crazy. But, by far, the most stressful part of planning that dream wedding is making it happen on a real-life budget.
The good news? One simple word is key to getting what you want: Negotiate. With a little back and forth, savvy couples can save hundreds (even thousands) of dollars and score amenities that are otherwise unaffordable.
1. Set a Budget
When negotiating with your wedding vendors, the first and most important step takes place well before the first meeting. Simon Tai, a member of The Remixologist, a New York City-based wedding deejay collective, advises brides to come prepared with a firm grasp of how much she’s willing and able to spend. That way, both parties are better equipped to strike a deal. “Most brides have a budget that they need to stick with. Rank what’s most important. From there you can tell where you want to put your money.”
2. Do Your Homework
Planning a wedding isn’t all fun and games: You won’t get far without doing adequate research. If you’re looking for a florist, find out what your dream florist and their competitors would charge for those peonies you covet. With a solid idea of what things will cost, you’ll be better equipped to negotiate a fair price.