YouTuber Aja Dang’s best tips for wedding planning on a budget
Select’s editorial team works independently to review financial products and write articles we think our readers will find useful. While we earn commissions from many affiliate partners, not all Select offers are affiliate-only.
Aja DangShe is not a stranger to setting up a budget in order to achieve life’s major milestones. She documented her on-going work in 2020. her YouTube channelShe began her journey toward paying off $200,000 in credit card, car and student loan debt in just two years. She’s taken on an entirely new challenge this year: to plan her destination wedding within a budget of $45,000
Dang originally wanted to maintain the $30,000 spending limit. This is higher than what newlyweds were paid in last year. According to The Knot Real Weddings StudyAccording to the survey, $28,000 was the average national cost for a reception and ceremony in 2021. Dang raised the price to $45,000 because she realized that wedding planning in Hawaii was expensive and time-consuming. However, Dang felt it was worth increasing her budget.
According to her, “I was born in Hawaii and I want to return home for my wedding.” Select. “More importantly my Popo is still our grandparent and as she will be 95 when we get married it was important that we go to her wedding to be there so she could participate in our day.”
No matter what destination you choose, planning your wedding can be stressful. Dang shares her top three financial tips for achieving and maintaining financial stability in today’s economy.
Sign up for the Select Newsletter
Get the best shopping recommendations in your email. Weekly shopping recommendations to help you upgrade your life. Sign-up here.
Planning a wedding? budgetChoose the most important items to make your day special. It may be that you spend more money on music or an open bar while spending less on decor, invitations and flowers. Perhaps you prefer to pay more for a photographer, and cut back on entertainment or food. It is important that you prioritize what you value most. This will help you create a memorable day and save you money.
For Dang, her and her fiancé are prioritizing spending their money on the experience, meaning anything that makes their wedding more fun for everyone. They are reducing costs elsewhere, but renting, catering, and entertainment are their big ticket items. They are reusing their wedding flowers for their reception. The elders will only receive physical invitations. Costco accepts returns on unopened alcohol. Dang mentions that they are cutting the cost of wedding cakes.
“A cake is not super important to us, so instead of doing a multi-tiered cake that costs $600, we’re doing an 8″ round cake, which cut our cake budget by more than half,” she adds.
The first decision you make when planning your wedding is to choose a venue. Dang recommends that you choose a venue that has wedding packages to ensure that high-quality vendors are available at a reduced rate.
“When I first started wedding planning, I was told that finding vendors on your own was the more affordable route but it was not — at all,” she says.
After spending a couple of months trying to scout out vendors by themselves, her and her fiancé ended up going with their venue’s package offerings — a move that saved thousands of dollars.
Dang says that vendors offered deep discounts to caterers for their constant stream of customers. We had previously spoken to a caterer and were quoted $8,000; however, when we chose to accept the package offered by the venue, it was revealed that they also recommended the same caterer. Our quote dropped to $5,000.
You can plan your wedding budget if you are able. If not, you should consider where to maximize your cash gift.
It is possible to use that money for a honeymoonYou might consider investing a small portion of your savings in an investment or savings account. This will help to get you and your partner started on the right track.
Dang had a substantial amount of savings after receiving a $30,000 donation from her father to help pay for the wedding. She put only half, or $15,000, of his contribution into the wedding fund (her and her fiancé funded the rest) and invested the other $15,000 into a brokerage accountSave up to buy a down payment on a future home. Please select a ranking TD Ameritrade, Ally Invest FidelitySome of these are also available on the best brokerage accounts with no commission fees.
“We are fortunate enough to be in a position to save both for a wedding as well as a home. But, since the LA markets is so crazy right now it’s giving me more time to put together a good nest egg.”
Although a significant family contribution can be a huge help in saving money for wedding planning, it is important that your purpose is clear. AnyHow much cash you have available. Finance married life is more than one day.
You might want to consider a high-yield savings accountSimilar to the Marcus by Goldman Sachs High Yield Online SavingsOther options from big banksLike an American Express® High Yield Savings AccountIt could be a Barclays Online Savings account. These options will earn you more interest that putting the cash into a savings account. By doing this, both you and your partner can increase your savings to pay for a future expense such as the down payment on a home or other major purchase.
Goldman Sachs Bank USA has been accepted as a member of the FDIC.
Annual Percentage Yield
One to open, $1 to earn interest
You can withdraw up to six times per statement cycle and receive free transfers or withdrawals *The 6/statement cycle withdrawal limit is waived during the coronavirus outbreak under Regulation D
Additional transaction fee
Checking account available?
Are you able to offer an ATM card?
There are many moving pieces to planning your wedding day. But Dang has some tips to help you manage the finances. Prioritize your must-haves, search for venues that offer packages, and save any money you have to support your new life together.
Interest rate and APY are subject to change at any time without notice before and after an American Express® High Yield Savings Account is opened.
Editor’s note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the Select editorial staff’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any third party.