Saving for the big day & beyond

The cost of saying “I do” may be more than you expect. As the wedding industry trends towards personalization and creativity more than ever before, many couples are paying the price. The average cost of an American wedding rings in at $33,931.1 

By planning for the financial side of your wedding in advance, you can enjoy your special day and avoid any further debt as you prepare to build a solid financial future together.

Man and woman planning their wedding

Have "the talk"

Marriage is a partnership based on trust and both partners should have a clear idea about what they’re signing on for. Discuss any debts, both partners’ credit scores, and any other financial issues before the wedding. If you start discussing finances early, it may be easier to make smart financial decisions together throughout the marriage.

Man and woman planning their wedding

Set your priorities

Your parents, family and friends may all have opinions about which traditions you should include in your big day. Setting a budget based upon your vision of the special day you may help you resist the urge to pile on additional, unnecessary expenses.

Woman planning her wedding

Start saving early

If your heart is set on a storybook wedding, saving for it over time is a better option than accumulating debt. Figure out how much your ideal wedding will cost, determine all your sources of funds, and then make a schedule to reach your savings goal. Building strong savings habits now can help you plan for other financial priorities later.

Mother giving her daughter her wedding dress

Reuse when you can

Every bride wants to feel special on her wedding day, but an expensive designer dress may not fit your budget. Consider looking for a previously loved dress (or engagement ring, for that matter). There’s a bustling market for used wedding dresses at sites like or  and even options to rent with ready-to-wear sites like

Bride and groom celebrating at their wedding reception

Explore off-peak and off-season for savings

Saturday night is the most sought-after day and time for weddings, so you should expect to pay a premium. You may want to consider more economical options, such as an afternoon wedding or another day of the week. If you’re having a destination wedding, take advantage of a more flexible schedule by holding the event mid-week, or consider a more affordable off-season wedding.

Bride and groom celebrating at their wedding reception

Pare down the guest list

The more guests you invite, the more expensive your wedding will be. A smaller guest list keeps the celebration intimate, and lets you spend time enjoying the people who are most important to you.

A wedding is just the first of many important financial decisions that you will make as a couple. Make sure your big day starts your marriage on the right note and fits the goals you have for your financial future.