UK wedding guests admit to cutting back

Have you been invited to a wedding this year but are pushed for cash? You’re not alone!

As increased living costs continue to bite in 2023, those looking to plan their special day may be considering some cost cutting measures and cheaper alternatives to afford their wedding plans.

But it’s not just the couples that incur costs! Those of us invited to weddings during the cost of living crisis also have to shell out on transport, accommodation and gifts and so it’s not surprising that as budgets are squeezing some of us are having to turn down our invites all together.

In fact, diamond ring specialists F. Hinds found that 85% of wedding guests are looking to implement some cost-saving measures if they were invited to a wedding in 2023/24.

How are wedding guests planning to save money?

From planning outfits to purchasing cheaper gifts, wedding guests have revealed the ways they plan to cut back on various expenditures for upcoming weddings.

The most popular way to save money was to re-wear an old outfit, with 42% of guests choosing this option. This not only saves a pretty penny in preparation for the big day, but is a great way to promote sustainable fashion.

A quarter (25%) of guests would happily miss out on the pre-wedding fun by avoiding the stag or hen do in a bid to save money, whilst 23% would spend less when searching for a gift for the newly-weds.

Other ways invitees are looking to save cash include booking cheaper accommodation (22%), driving to the venue to avoid getting a taxi (20%), and only attending the wedding ceremony (18%) or reception (16%).

For a full list of money-saving ideas prompted by F.Hinds’ survey, see below.

 Top ways people would save money if invited to a wedding in 2023/24  %  
Wearing something they already own to save on a new outfit  42%  
Not attending the hen or stag go  25%  
Spending less on a wedding gift for the couple  23%  
Booking cheap accommodation  22%  
Driving to the venue to avoid getting a taxi  20%  
Only attending the wedding ceremony  18%  
Only attending the wedding reception  16%  
Sharing travel or accommodation with other guests  15%  
Not drinking at the reception  12%  

Some guests admit to skipping the wedding entirely

As wedding guests plan to slash costs in numerous different ways, the question arises; is it ever acceptable to decline a wedding invitation to save money?

Although this choice might not be the easiest conversation to have with the bride and groom, nearly a fifth (20%) of guests would decline the invitation entirely in order to save funds.

Upon looking at which cities are most likely to decline an invite, Belfast residents were the most likely to turn down the wedding altogether with one in five (22%) doing so to reduce personal outlay. Joining them in the rankings were Norwich (21%), London (20%) and Southampton (19%).   

In today’s tough economic climate, making these difficult cost-cutting decisions has become a reality for many of us. Ensure to be open and honest with the bride and groom if you’re planning to decline the invite – we’d suggest telling the couple in advance, rather than pulling a sickie to get out of the celebrations!