Consumer expert Clark Howard’s column appears here each Thursday in conjunction with Deal Spotter, a weekly print section in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
We’re getting closer to wedding season. If you or someone you know is getting married, I have some suggestions for you about ways to save money.
Costco Wholesale has been getting derisive press of late for selling high-end designer wedding dresses at a fraction of what they would cost elsewhere. We’re talking typically somewhere between $700 and $1,200.
The idea that weddings have to be frightfully expensive to be any good is an odd and amazing thing. I think about my in-laws who were married some 50 years ago and it cost them $25. Inflation adjusted, that would be like a $100 wedding today.
Joel, one of the producers on my radio show, got married less than six months ago. He and his bride Emily did a very inexpensive wedding. Emily had fun creating the décor for the wedding. She crafted flowers out of paper instead of dedicating money to a huge flower budget.
Joel says Emily liked the creativity behind the whole process and the saving money part just kind of fell in line with that. For their rehearsal dinner, they opted for catered barbecue and kept prices down that way.
Joel and Emily have a short-sale home that needs TLC and that’s the goal that’s important to them, not having blown tens of thousands of dollars on a wedding. And they both want to travel before they have children. So instead of putting their money into one day — as important as that day is — they wanted to save that money to make memories in other ways.
If you’re a bridezilla, I would encourage you to take a chill pill. Remember that your vows and having a great life with your spouse are the most important things. A wedding can be tasteful without blowing the budget.
-by Clark Howard, Save More, Spend Less, Avoid Rip-offs
Find more answers to your consumer questions at ClarkHoward.com. You can also listen to his radio show live 1-4 p.m. Monday through Friday on AM 750 and NOW 95.5 FM News/Talk WSB.