CONGRATULATIONS! You're engaged! The calls to family and friends have been made. The posts to social media are up for everyone to see. And now it's time to start planning your wedding. But before you jump on the computer and start searching for venues and vendors, here are five decisions you and your fiancé must make before you start:
1. When are you going to get married?
Do you have a specific date, month, or season in mind? Will it be this year or next year? Even if you’re open, it’s good to have a general idea of when you want to get married so you can tell your venue and vendors.
2. What kind of wedding do you both want to have?
Do you want your wedding to feel like a party and your fiancé would prefer a small, intimate gathering? It’s good to discuss what your ideal wedding looks like so you can see if you are on the same page or if you will need to compromise. This is a wedding celebrating the two of you, you will want to make sure you are both happy.
3. How many people do you want to invite?
This is a follow up to the previous question, but you can have a wedding that feels intimate with 200 guests and a party-vibe with just 50 guests. It’s all the look and feel you are trying to convey. Knowing that, how many people do you want to invite? Keep in mind, fewer guests means more one-on-one time to talk to your guests whereas a large guest list means less time for individual interaction.
4. Where do you want to get married?
Do you want a destination wedding? An outdoor wedding? A church wedding and hotel reception? There are lot of choices out there and knowing where you want to get married before you start researching locations will help narrow down the search.
5. What's your budget?
This is a big one. Make sure the budget you have in mind is aligned with the budget your fiancé has in mind. And if you have outside sources helping you pay for the wedding (parents, grandparents, godparents, etc) make sure you talk to them on how much they want to spend. It’s good to know where your starting off point is for spending because costs can add up quickly. Knowing what your budget is can help you plan accordingly.