Everyone knows weddings are expensive, but just how expensive are they? If you want to save money but still have a fantastic wedding, here are a list of suggestions we have for you!

Based on our research, the average cost of weddings in Maryland around $35,000.

Ways to save money

1. Plan your wedding on a weekday

If most of your guests are local and can get to your wedding on a weekday, that’s one of the best ways to save money. If you must have your wedding on a weekend, consider doing it on a Friday or Sunday since Saturday is the most expensive day. Pretty much all wedding venues offer discounts on weekdays. Even hotels where your out of town guests will need to stay will be cheaper.

2. Have your wedding during the off season

In Maryland, having your wedding in late winter or early spring is a great way to save money. Venues have a tougher time booking weddings when the weather is cooler, so they are usually willing to offer a discount to encourage people to schedule weddings year round. Pro tip: try to book for the week before peak season starts and you will likely get great pricing and good weather.

3. Handle decorations yourself

Decorations can add a lot to the overall price of a wedding. Even the smallest costs add up quickly. There are a lot of crafts you can do yourself. Utilize your bridesmaids and friends who offer to help you with wedding tasks. Centerpieces, table numbers, wall décor and party favors can all be done yourself.

4. Shorten your guest list

The more people you invite, the more dinners and drinks you must buy. If there are friends or family who you’ve lost touch with or people who have a significant other you’ve never met, think about leaving them off the guest list.

5. Limit your bar selection

Alcohol is expensive and an open bar adds up quickly. Instead of skimping and doing a cash bar or footing the bill for a full bar, consider offering only beer and wine. If you want to have liquor, consider offering one or two pre-selected signature cocktails.

6. Minimize flowers

Flowers can run a few thousand dollars for weddings. Think about making artificial arrangements yourself or substituting greenery in place of regular blooms. Skip putting flowers on all your guest tables

7. Have a nontraditional reception

Instead of a traditional reception, have a brunch or cocktail hour reception. Brunch food costs less and isn’t a peak time of day which is a great way to save money. A cocktail hour reception limits the timeframe you must rent the place, pay the vendors and pay for the food/drinks which all saves money.

Decide what’s important and where you’re comfortable saving money. There are plenty of ways to have your dream wedding but still save some money. Hopefully some of these ideas help you to do that!