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How guests can fulfill their budget at the peak of the wedding season Lifestyle

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This is a landmark year for weddings, and industry experts in the Wedding Report predict that more than 2.5 million couples will marry – a maximum of 40 years. But you may find that your finances aren’t quite ready to take on the costs associated with being a wedding guest.

Half (50%) of Americans say they plan to attend a wedding in 2022, but less than a third (31%) have included a visit in their budget, according to a new poll.

“I think the guests will start looking at everything they’ve never looked at before and deciding,‘ Should I really be attending this event? ’” Says Shavon Harris, a wedding planner from New York City. In some cases, they may simply decide to send a good gift in their absence, she says.

Before answering, weigh the important factors – from the cost of airfare to your relationship with the couple – and consider these ideas to include attendance in your budget.

THINK OF SAVING ON EXPENSIVE COSTS

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Among the main factors that Americans consider before attending a wedding are the distance from home (47%) and the cost of travel and accommodation (43%). NerdWallet poll with more than 2,000 people spent online with The Harris Poll.

The cost of airfare or driving plus accommodation may add up. Using the miles or points you earn can help reduce travel costs.

Moving around the city after arrival is a different cost. “Every wedding costs a few hundred dollars to rent a car if you’re there for the weekend,” says Elliott Appel, a certified financial planner in Madison, Wisconsin. Consider sharing the cost of renting a car or driving with other guests to save money.

Most couples still provide their guests with hotel rooms at a discount, Harris says. Make sure you don’t miss the deadline to catch this deal. You may also want to consider sharing a room or renting a lounge with other guests.

Appeal also suggests making a trip a double duty if you have nearby family or friends you plan to visit this year.

WE SET SET REASONABLE spending limits for gifts and outfits

Getting to a wedding is only part of the cost. You also want to bring a gift and look presentable. After more than two years of living in a pandemic, the formal attire hanging in your closet may not fit as well as before.

“If you can duplicate outfits instead of doing a few different outfits for each wedding, I always recommend it,” Appel says. Clothing rental services, such as Rent the Runway or Nuuly, will help you cut costs while still feeling special.

And don’t let the expectations that will be outrageously spent on gifts hold you back.

“Just because we know a person well doesn’t necessarily mean you need to spend a significant amount of money on a gift,” Appel says. It offers a gift with personal meaning, something “that may reflect an experience or shared memory”. A group gift is another way to give an item at a higher price without losing your budget.

STRATEGICALLY STRETCH THE BUDGET

You will probably do your best to share a special day with a close friend or family member, even if it increases your budget.

Appel does not advocate debt for the wedding. But, he says, “I also don’t want people to miss these memorable experiences.” He suggests trying to cut costs or temporarily increase revenue to cover additional costs.

If these strategies aren’t enough, you may want to consider transferring the cost of wedding guests to a credit card.

However, make sure you have a plan to repay this debt – popular methods of avalanche debt or snowball. And use credit cards strategically. Transferring payments to a card with a low or 0% per annum for balance transfers gives extra time to pay without accruing high interest.

IF YOU HAVE TIME, PROMISE BEFORE GOING

If you know that a wedding is waiting for you, start planning now.

Include guest expenses in your budget with a savings account – a savings account designed for planned expenses. Constantly storing smaller pieces over time is easier.

In addition, cutting costs in your budget will not only help you afford to attend a wedding, but also respond to rising inflation in general. Think about buying brands in stores, reviewing invoices, unsubscribing, and cutting discretionary costs.

This article was provided by The Associated Press on the NerdWallet personal finance website. Amanda Barroso is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: abarroso@nerdwallet.com.

NerdWallet: Guests face wedding boom, rising costs and COVID challenges https://bit.ly/nerdwallet-guests-juggle-wedding-boom-rising-costs-and-covid-concerns

This online survey of 2,054 U.S. adults aged 18 and over was conducted by The Harris Poll on behalf of NerdWallet from March 15 to 17, 2022. Respondents included 961 people who will attend at least one wedding in 2022. Accuracy of online poll sampling Harris Poll is measured using a Bayesian reliable interval. For this survey, sample data are accurate to + 2.8 percentage points using a 95% confidence level. For a complete survey methodology, including weighted variables and sample size subgroups, contact Sarah Borland at sborland@nerdwallet.com.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed without permission.

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