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Weddings can be expensive. And when the economy is poor, they can seem REALLY expensive. So, here are some tips for saving THOUSANDS on your wedding:

1. CUT YOUR GUEST LIST!!! I hate to scream, but this really is the quickest way to save cash. Let’s play with some numbers. If you’re inviting 200 guests to your wedding, and your meal is $50 per person, that’s $10,000 BEFORE you include tax and gratuity. But if you cut your list to 100 guests, you’ve saved $5000 just like that!

2. Change the time of Day. Everyone knows that lunch is cheaper than dinner. Why not consider a lunch reception? Or a brunch reception. It can still be fabulous, but because it’s earlier in the day, your food is less expensive. And people don’t tend to consume large quantities of alcohol during the day, so you save on food and on the bar!

3. Hire a DJ. This is very simple. Bands can cost $2000-8000. DJs can cost about $150/hour.

4. Kill the Bar. Alcohol adds up. So many people want an open bar. But those open bars can add thousands of dollars to your bill. Skip the open bar and opt for a signature cocktail that is served during your cocktail hour. Or opt for mock-tails, which are virgin versions of your favorite alcoholic beverage. You can still serve them in pretty glasses with a great garnish…just omit the alcohol.

5. Reconsider the Transportation. So many people spend thousands on limos. The costs can add up because most limo companies lock you into a minimum number of hours….usually 4 hours. But you might only want the limo to drive you from your church to your reception site. Skip the limo and get a town car! They can be as little as $75/hr and most companies don’t require you to keep them for a minimum number of hours. So, you only pay for the time you use. You still have a driver AND a sleek mode of transportation to get you from point A to point B.