Where Are The Affordable Wedding Venues?

But don't worry – we've got you covered. We'll explore some of the best affordable wedding venues in this post. So whether you're on a tight budget or want to save money wherever you can, read on for ideas!

  • What time should I arrive at the ceremony? 
  • What is the dress code?
  • Will the ceremony, cocktail hour, and reception occur indoors or outdoors?
  • What will the weather be like?
  • What will your wedding-day timeline look like? 
  • How do I get to the wedding venue?

Ideally, the RSVP date should fall three to four weeks before the wedding, and you should mail the wedding invitation six to eight weeks before the wedding.

It is the line where guests will write their names, and the M begins the title. Then, Mr Mrs Ms. and they write their names on the line after the M.

If your guest goes ahead and writes in a plus-one on their RSVP card, you need to address it tactfully. Call them and graciously explain that their plus-one is, unfortunately, not invited. Please give a reason, like budget or space, or refer back to your hard-and-fast rules to let them know this is the case for everyone.

When should I send bridal shower invitations? Bridal shower invitations should go out between six and eight weeks before the event, depending on how many out-of-towners are on the list. Make sure guests RSVP to one person (the maid of honour, for example) to keep numbers organised.

Sentimental Backyard Ceremonies

Whether it's your home, your partner's childhood home, or the house with the white picket fence you dreamed about owning when you were younger, a backyard space creates immediate intimacy and a comfortable ambience for your guests. Suppose you or a relative owns the home. In that case, you enjoy the benefits of added sentimentality and meaning to the space and relatively high flexibility in choosing a wedding date, in addition to it being very low cost. On the other hand, suppose nobody in your family or close circle of friends has a home that fits the bill. In that case, you can often rent a standalone house through a homeshare site such as Airbnb for events, which is a fraction of the cost of a regular venue, assuming you have a small guest list (info about vacation rentals for a larger, affordable wedding are below!).

Some of the other benefits of a backyard wedding include that pets can attend if you want them to, and there are far fewer restrictions on decorations. If you're exploring this option, consider planning your wedding during a season that has friendly outdoor conditions so guests will be comfortable, and take into account what the ground will be like that time of year so you can advise of any clothing or shoe restrictions (e.g., block heels or flats only). You will likely need to incur additional costs to rent a tent (or other outdoor covering in the event of rain), guest tables, and seating, which you might include in other venues' fees. When weighing your options, you should compare these costs as part of the "cost" of your backyard wedding.

Costs aside, you can take this opportunity to transform an outdoor space with decor that makes it your own:

  1. Incorporate plush furniture outside with rich rugs (perfect for Instagram--we've recently loved the trend of antique rug aisles!).
  2. Create cosy lounge areas, build a wedding arch using garden trellises and weave in florals and large leaves.
  3. Invest in strands of fairy or twinkle lights to amp up the romantic, unique feel of the space.

Some couples choosing a backyard wedding venue prefer their celebration to be more casual, so the most important thing is to design what feels right to you. If your dream wedding involves a barbecue kit and a variety of lawn games for your guests, it's your special day, and the backyard is the perfect scene for this sort of celebration! We recommend you use your wedding website and stationery elements to help guests understand how casual or informal the celebration will be and what they should be prepared for. In addition, our invitation etiquette guide is a great place to learn how to word dress code and other information.

Breathtaking National Park Weddings

If you're considering a micro wedding or minimally, both love the outdoors and have fit and dedicated guests able to complete a hike, National parks are an incredible place to tie the knot. Because they come with built-in backgrounds and dramatic landscapes, you'll have some of the unique wedding photos of any couple, and you won't have to spend a significant amount of money on decor. The best national park wedding venues are Yosemite National Park, Mount Rainier National Park, Glacier National Park, Redwood National Park, Zion National Park, Olympic National Park, and Haleakala National Park. However, there are 62 to choose from! Make sure you check in with a local expert to reserve a spot at the park and get the permitting required. We also recommend that you discuss potential park venues with local photographers during your initial interview. Local photographers can help you pinpoint the perfect spots and timeline for capturing the most impactful wedding pictures. You should also know that many parks have strict regulations about what you can and cannot bring in, so you may not be able to incorporate some décor elements you might have been considering. We've loved seeing brides and grooms with "Just Married" hiking packs all over Pinterest.

Given park hours and restrictions, if you're hoping to have any formal reception or celebration beyond the ceremony and photos, you will likely need to find a secondary location offsite. Many couples choose to rent cabins or homes outside park boundaries to host an outdoor dinner or dessert and dance under the stars after the event itself. Given you'll have hiked a national park and gotten married that day, we recommend keeping this portion simple!

"I Do's" At The Beach

You probably don't need us to explain why the beach is such a beautiful setting for a wedding celebration, but it's also one of the most inexpensive wedding venues. Most beach city permitting offices and local photographers will be able to help you find the best, most private space for your ceremony. Think about a location where you can face westward to catch the best sunset views. In some states, like Florida, private resorts and hotels often own their strips of the beach, so before you set your heart on the spot, be sure you aren't looking at a private venue's property (where you would need to pay private venue fees). Just like a national park, you will need to get a permit for any beach wedding and can also inquire about accessibility for your guests at that time. And, of course, like the other outdoor venues on this list, weather can be a factor, so make sure to scope out a nearby beach pavilion or other "plan B" should a summer storm come through. Mid-day sun may get warm, so morning or sunset vows are advised!

Using natural beauty means you have a built-in background for your vows, so you can also save money on decorations and focus on a few beautiful, complimentary touches. Of course, you can always add flowers and palm fronds to your wedding arch to frame your vows. Or, add flowers to the chairs along the aisle for a pop of colour. Review our wedding flower guide for expert recommendations from a seasoned florist. The neutral on neutral trend looks particularly beautiful along the sea, with many couples using elements like bleached palms and pampas to generate a beautiful, beachy texture.

As far as the reception goes, not all public beaches allow for permits greater than 3 hours, or the pitching of event tents, tables, and seating, so you will need to confirm in advance if you would like to have your reception in the same area as your ceremony. Often you can reserve a nearby public pavilion to avoid additional event set-up fees entirely. For décor, in addition to incorporating wedding colours and floral design elements for your ceremony, consider using seashells, sand dollars, and faux bleached coral to tie your tropical look in on the table(s). Many couples like to include these design elements in their wedding stationery. After all, "Destination Wedding" is one of Minted's top-searched terms! Please review our full post on beach wedding ideas.

Cosy Café Soirées

Suppose you and your partner have a favourite coffee shop nearby or love the historic architecture, decorations, or theme of a café in your city or town. In that case, it can be the perfect venue for a micro wedding or a more intimate affair! Many coffee shops close in the early evenings, so you may be able to negotiate with them to stay open later and have the whole space for you and your guests. They're also less likely to mind if you want to cater your food or bartending service. Additionally, they can probably introduce you to their local hospitality network contacts and help you negotiate friends and family prices.

One important piece to consider when exploring a café as your affordable wedding space is how and whether you might be able to rearrange the space. For example, if dancing is important to you, you'll want to make sure you can push tables to the side to create space for a mini dancefloor. Or, if you want to include a dessert buffet, you'll need to arrange several high-tops together (as a side note, we think the café is a perfect locale for a naked wedding cake). Once again, the manager can often help you and make sure you're all set up on the big day.

Hosting a wedding in a coffee shop means you can theme the event in two ways. Lean into the coffee theme (perfect for a couple of caffeine connoisseurs) or highlight your unconventional choice and uniqueness with an interesting design and unexpected hues. For example, consider a colour palette that includes a dark chocolate or mocha colour for your wedding invitations. A creative wedding favour for your guests could include monogrammed coffee mugs. You could also create custom signs that say things like "I love you coffee...and you," or other things that tie into a "caffeination station" theme.

Suppose you're looking to achieve something more quirky and untraditional. In that case, we recommend starting with a bold, typographical invitation and incorporating clever copy like "Good Coffee. Great Music. Bad Dancing." to delight your guests. In addition to flowers, you can consider interesting, non-floral design elements like paper cranes or vintage candelabras to set the scene.

Vacation Rental Celebrations

One surefire way to find affordable wedding venues is by scouring VRBO and Airbnb for a private venue that may be open to hosting guests for a wedding. Both offer filters to search for event-friendliness, and it is an increasingly popular means of finding a wedding venue. You can find many venue types, from manors and estates to vineyards and private ranches, willing to host a group event. They often let the lucky couple book the space one day in advance, so they have somewhere to stay the night before the wedding and can easily set everything up the following day. Many property owners on these vacation rental sites own multiple homes in an area, so it's also worth exploring whether they are willing to block off those properties for other guests in your party to make for a simpler experience.

The benefit of selecting a home on VRBO or Airbnb is you can easily navigate through a variety of filters and photos to find what you are looking for aesthetically and functionally. The ideal situation is when you find something with built-in or natural décor elements that speak to the style you're looking to emulate on your wedding day, so you don't have to spend significantly extra money on decorations. However, it is important to remember that homeowners are likely to have specific restrictions about bringing event rentals or catering vendors onto the property, so be certain to clear your specific plan with them directly before completing any booking agreement.

One Pro Tip For The Day Because you'll be hosting at a private residence that may not be well known to local taxi or delivery services, sending a custom direction card for guests to bring can avoid last-minute panicked calls and texts. If you need something special, you can reach out to our Custom Design Services team to create a custom venue map to include in your invitation suite.

ROMANTIC GARDEN CEREMONIES

Have you dreamt of a secret garden-esque wedding? The good news is that you don't need your French chateau to capture this experience. Full disclaimer: While some of the ideas on this list are free wedding venue ideas, many gardens and parks will charge for the time and space, especially privately funded or maintained. Many public gardens are organised into smaller garden areas or vignettes that allow you to create an interesting and beautiful flow for the order of your wedding day or night and help create an atmosphere of seclusion and intimacy. Botanical elements are already taken care of, so this is a great way to save on what can be an expensive flower budget. We still love when couples feature a few arrangements right where they stand to say "I Do." The added touch helps accent the space and ensures the photos are magical.

That most couples who choose a garden venue gravitate toward floral and botanical themes, which you can integrate easily into your wedding website and stationery. As a bonus, we've even seen some couples send invites that contain pressed flowers. Of course, couples can also count on the garden backdrop to frame their reception, but you can always ask if the garden is willing to trim some blooms or foliage to incorporate into your tablescapes.

Given the weather element, weddings during the Spring and Summer are probably best. Still, if you don't mind wearing a shawl or jacket, we've seen some breathtaking ceremonies framed by fall foliage that was perfectly cosy and chic. Be careful with sundown timing, though! It would help if you determined the time of day to start depending on where you live and whether you would prefer a tea time reception or a more traditional dinner.

MOVIE THEATRE OR PLAYHOUSE NUPTIALS

If your personality shines on stage and there is a quirky old playhouse nearby, why not explore renting it for a night when a show isn't scheduled? Between productions, you might find a decent rate! Given the time we're living in, theatres are drawing smaller crowds, so Work out a deal that you and theatre management are happy with. If you go this route, be sure to put your name up in the lights on the marquee for your wedding. It is a can't-miss photo op!

For additional savings, many theatres have a variety of tables and chairs on hand that you can likely negotiate with your space rental instead of contracting with a separate event company. It can also add to the charm of your décor, as you are likely to be able to mix and match different pieces for a found, eclectic feel.

Conclusion

Wedding venues can be expensive, but there are ways to find affordable ones. Start by considering what you need and want in a venue. Once you know that, do some research to find the best options for your budget. Don't be afraid to get creative with your location or look for off-season deals. And finally, don't forget to ask around for recommendations from friends and family who have recently gotten married. With a little bit of effort, you should be able to find an affordable wedding venue that meets all your needs. Have you found an affordable wedding venue yet?

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