What would you do if you had $32,641 to spend?
The average cost of a wedding in 2015 in the United States was $32,641 AND our guest lists are getting smaller!
A new (scary) trend for couples is to "mini-moon": having a shorter honeymoon to stretch their wedding dollar further. I love a good holiday and that idea terrifies me!
Are we looking at this all wrong?
I'm a huge fan of intimate and simple: simple ceremonies with close friends and a party to mark the occasion. Though not everyone is, and I respect that. Spend as you will so your day is as you want it. Weddings are serious business, let's face it. The quest for the perfect ceremony, perfect bouquet, wedding gown and the "must have" accessories for the big day make it very easy to blow a budget. Though is it all necessary for ONE (granted, very special) day?
The 30 grand got me thinking. What would I do with 30 grand?
Keeping with the wedding ceremony theme, if you were to spend a fraction of that cost on a wedding (here comes the plug!) in Vietnam, with your nearest and dearest, your long Asian honeymoon begins the day you arrive.
Let's say you come to Vietnam with a large guest list and have the full extravaganza and spend only half of the average wedding cost and keep 15,000 USD – here are some ideas on what you could do with it after your wedding to keep your relationship alive and thriving:
75 super plush date nights; or
15 indulgent long weekends; or
1-3 overseas trips; or
Countless thoughtful gestures to surprise your partner; and
For the responsible ones among us – pay off the wedding.
No one wants to start a new life with a debt. Debt is awful. It creates unnecessary stress and isn't much fun paying for years after the big day is over.
Isn't your wedding all about you and your partner? Do you need the "must have trinkets and gifts for your guests", 3 photographers, a videographer and a drone?
I've worked with couples who have eloped or holidayed in Vietnam with their closest friends and enjoyed the most stunning and intimate ceremonies I've had the pleasure to experience.
I'm not talking about elaborate table settings and arches decorated with thousands of dollars' worth of flowers. Most had one photographer to capture the "moments", a few strategically placed candles and jars, some tulle over an arch with bouquets from the local flower vendor to create the intimate setting. Call in a local caterer to prepare some nibbles, drinks and dinner and all the ingredients for a stress-free, debt free and above all completely wonderful wedding and party.
There are no wrongs or rights when it comes to getting married, and I'm not judging anyone. When I read the article it caused me to reflect on what the concept of a wedding actually is. If the average cost of a wedding is increasing, our guest lists reducing and people are sacrificing a honeymoon to pay for it all – seems like a no-brainer to me.
Grab some of your closest friends and family and head to Vietnam and get married on the beach!
PS: You can keep the change!