Updated: Aug 11
When you're planning your wedding, you may not realise the extra costs that can sneak up on you. So let's get them out in the open, so that you have the knowledge and can add them to your budget and be in the know!
Here are 14 hidden wedding costs you should be aware of:
When getting quotes from suppliers, be sure to check whether it or is not including VAT. When you don't realise VAT will be added and you are budgeting it can be a big shock once that is added on. So make sure you are aware when checking over quotes.
Non- Approved Suppliers
Some venues have a select few approved suppliers. Usually caterers. these suppliers will have ben vetted by the venue and so forth. They may however be open to you using external caterers for an additional fee. Check what that is before entertaining the idea and again check over your budget to see if it is doable. You do not want to get a surprise £1,000 (for example) additional bill just to use the caterer you want.
If having a church ceremony, there will be fees obviously. However do bear in mind that if you want the lovely extras such as a choir or bell ringers, these are additional charges. Also be aware that if you are having an outdoor wedding ceremony, at the same venue as your wedding reception, there may be an additional charge for this. So make sure you ask the right questions at the start.
If a venue has a minimum guest count, double check your guest list. This can be the same for caterers and also some suppliers, such as crockery and cutlery hire. If you are dead set on wanting a particular venue or caterer with a minimum head count, then you will still likely have to pay the sum for their minimum number.
Other suppliers may have a minimum charge. So even if you aren't having enough of something to hit a suppliers minimum spend, you may have to round up your fee to that number.
When a caterer is tallying up your total quote, ensure you have considered some of your suppliers. Check their contracts as some do require a meal. Some even stipulate a hot meal must be offered. This is usually for the suppliers that are on site all day, such as your wedding planner, photographer, videographer and some bands and DJ's as well. It is polite to include this as happy, full suppliers means they will work harder for you with fatiguing so easily!
Also consider any additional food the morning of the wedding. You may want to get in a selection of pastries and fruit for your bridal party, whilst you all get ready together.
Travel and Accommodation
Suppliers that may be travelling further than normal will charge a travel fee. It is usually 45p per mile. If they require an overnight stay, then you will be expected to cover this as well.
If you are searching for sun for your wedding and heading abroad, then bare in mind you will need to cover flights, accommodation and perhaps a small sundries balance towards food for any suppliers to travel over with you. At a minimum they will expect flight and accommodation.
Corkage is simply when a venue or caterer, charge to serve alcohol that you are providing yourselves. Not all venues and caterers do this. some may take the approach that, they are already there, so they will of course serve your alcohol for you. If you are being charged corkage, ensure a conversation about not unnecessarily opening too many bottles. This is because they will charge per bottle they serve. If you buy your alcohol on a sale and return basis, you can then also return anything unopened.
Production / Sound
When booking bands or DJ's make sure you know what they are providing themselves and whether they expect you to provide anything additional. Some larger bands may need you to hire in a few pieces of kit and possibly a sound engineer.
Also consider extras such as an additional wireless microphone, uprights and an acoustic guitarist may need a small PA system and speakers hired in if they don't have their own.
Breakdown and Clear up
If hiring a dry hire venue or marquee there will likely be a breakdown and clear up cost. Additional rubbish removal fees can also be added on, so make sure you are aware of what is pre paid and what you might need to organise and pay for separately.
Overtime and Delivery Charges
Overtime may be charged by a venue if you do not leave by the set time. Be aware if this is the case, what the fee is and whether you are willing to push it and pay, or not.
Delivery charges may be added by suppliers if they have further to travel than normal. If they have to travel to site in general, or out of their regular hours.
Florists may also charge an additional fee for example, if they are staying on site longer, to repurpose your flowers for your wedding reception.
Alterations and Dry Cleaning
You will no doubt have budgeted for your wedding dress. But don't forget to add alterations to your budget as well as dry cleaning fees for after the wedding.
If you want to have a hair and makeup trial, these may be included in your fee if you confirm your booking with the stylist. however it may be an additional cost. If you want extra trials these will almost certainly be an additional cost, so make sure you have factored that in.
Do you plan on having your nails done for your wedding? You may want a few additional treatments such as eyelash extensions, fake tan, manicure, pedicure, facial or waxing. There treatments will no doubt be in prep for your wedding as well as your honeymoon. So make sure you've added them into your budget.
Postage and Thank Yous
You will have probably factored in rsvp's and invites. But have you considered the costs of stamps to post them. That is usually a cost couples completely forget to budget for. It's also ideal to consider your thank you cards into your budget.
Thanking your bridal party and parents with small gifts on the morning of the wedding or during the day itself is a lovely gesture. But make sure you've set a budget for it.