New survey reveals over one-third of Americans do not budget for weddings; Over 50 percent have trouble affording attending.
Boston, MA – July 13, 2015
More than one half of American consumers admitted they had trouble affording the cost of attending a wedding, according to a new online poll conducted by American Consumer Credit Counseling.
In addition, more than 25 percent of those surveyed at ConsumerCredit.com said the cost of attending a wedding included more than just buying a gift. Additional expenses incurred by wedding guests included clothing, hotels, food, shower gifts, transportation, or bachelor and bachelorette parties, according to the online poll. Even with the additional spending, over one third (34 percent) of responders said they do not budget for weddings.
The online poll of 126 budget-conscious consumers was conducted by American Consumer Credit Counseling – a national non-profit that helps consumers with financial education, budgeting and debt management – at ConsumerCredit.com.
“While you might be excited to celebrate your friends’ or family members’ special day, you also might be worried about the impact on your wallet,” said Steve Trumble, President and CEO of American Consumer Credit Counseling. “Between the gift, the transportation and the hotel, you could easily spend hundreds of dollars to attend a wedding. In order to prevent overspending, it’s important to budget, plan ahead and accept your financial reality. No couple wants to see a guest go into debt to attend their wedding.”
The poll also found that guests do explore and invest in ways to lower the cost of attending a wedding. Twenty-seven percent of responders say they split the cost of a gift, 26 percent said they carpool, while 25 percent of guests said they save by skipping pre-wedding events.
Given the multitude of costs often associated with attending a wedding, ACCC is offering a helpful guide to survive wedding season. The following tips can help consumers better plan and budget for a wedding:
- Plan ahead: If you have more than one wedding coming up, start a savings account to prepare for the upcoming festivities. Put your extra money into a separate savings account and draw as necessary. If you need a babysitter or pet sitter, ask a trusted friend in advance before you are forced to pay someone out of desperation.
- Carpool: Before making a long road trip by yourself, find some friends to travel with and split the gas and tolls.
- Don’t rush to book a room: Shop around for hotels. Don’t rush to book a room at the hotel the couple recommends—it may not be the best deal. If the prices are still too expensive, consider sharing a room with friends to bring down the cost. Another option is to skip the hotel all together. If the venue is close to home, consider commuting home rather than staying the night.
- Consider group gifts: Instead of struggling to come up with the perfect gift that fits your price range, team up with a few friends to get a present beyond your budget. Perhaps each of you pitches in enough money to afford a getaway weekend or tickets to an expensive show or concert.
- Borrow clothes: Don’t be caught wearing the same suit or dress that you wore to the last wedding. Diversify your wardrobe without breaking the bank by exchanging clothes with a friend.
- Have flexible wedding attire: If you can’t find a friend who is the same size as you, invest in a basic cocktail dress or standard suit that you can style for each occasion.
- Skip the bachelor/ bachelorette party: People are sometimes over-celebrating their life events and bachelor parties are becoming bachelorette weekends. If you cannot afford the festivities, cut out this major extra expense.
- Do some extra research: Find out where the couple is registered, and do some extra research by signing up for the store’s mailing list. You’ll be the first to know about storewide sales and receive exclusive discounts.
- Don’t buy a gift on the registry: Think beyond the registry and consider a thoughtful gift that comes from the heart.
- Make a vacation out of it: Instead of planning a vacation in addition to the wedding, consider extending your stay at a wedding destination. You’ll get twice the bang for your travel buck and have a little extra time to lounge by the pool.
ACCC is a 501(c)3 organization that provides free credit counseling, bankruptcy counseling, and housing counseling to consumers nationwide in need of financial literacy education and money management. For more information, contact ACCC:
- For credit counseling, call 800-769-3571
- For bankruptcy counseling, call 866-826-6924
- For housing counseling, call 866-826-7180
- Or visit us online at ConsumerCredit.com
About American Consumer Credit Counseling
American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC) is a nonprofit credit counseling 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to empowering consumers to achieve financial management and debt relief through education, credit counseling, and debt management solutions. Each month, ACCC invites consumers to participate in a poll focused on personal finance issues. The results are conveyed in the form of infographics that act as tools to educate the community on everyday personal finance issues and problems. By learning more about financial management topics such as credit and debt management, consumers are empowered to make the best possible financial decisions to reach debt relief. As one of the nation’s leading providers of personal finance education and credit counseling services, ACCC’s certified credit advisors work with consumers to help determine the best possible debt solutions for them. ACCC holds an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and is a member of the Association of Independent Consumer Credit Counseling Agencies. To participate in this month’s poll, visit ConsumerCredit.com and for more financial management resources visit TalkingCentsBlog.com.