The next time you get discouraged about your ballooning wedding expenses, take a break and grab some sushi. While you’re at the restaurant, ask the waitress about the cost of getting married in Japan.
I promise you’ll leave the sushi bar in a better mood.
The average wedding in Japan runs $70,000, according to the Association for Wedding Planners International. Brides in the United States, in comparison, plunked down about $22,000 last year.
Whether your wedding budget is $20,000 or $200,000, it’s a challenge to decide how to allocate precisely the right amount for an event that seems to have more complexity than the Olympics. Alongside the meat, potatoes and libation are budget line items that very few brides and grooms anticipated – like the cost of the ring bearer’s pillow or the alter candelabra.
At Scratch Weddings, we speak to engaged couples every day. Most arrive with a pretty good feel for their entertainment budget thanks, in large part, to budget calculator tools on wedding information portals.
For example, The Knot’s calculator advises brides with a $30,000 wedding budget to spend $1,800 for music at the reception, and another $300 each for music at the ceremony and cocktail hour.
For a wedding budget of $23,000, the Knot tells brides to allocate $1,380 for the reception music, and another $230 each for the ceremony and cocktail hour, for a grand total DJ spend of $1,840.
In the daunting months brides and grooms spend planning the perfect wedding, it’s easy to get caught up in cake tasting, gown fittings and reviewing table centerpieces. Research shows that dedicating more of that planning time to picking a marquee DJ – and collaborating about the right musical genres, artists, songs and mixes – pays back when guests dance all night long.
After their wedding, 72 percent of brides said they wished they spent more time choosing their reception entertainment, and 81 percent of guests said the thing they remembered most about a wedding was the entertainment, according to St. Louis Bride & Groom magazine.