How do people afford weddings with no money? The answer may be more straightforward than you think, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy.

Planning a wedding on a budget means cutting corners in a lot of ways, but this doesn’t equal a loss of quality or experience - or at least it doesn’t have to.

In this guide, we’ll discuss some easy ways to plan a wedding on a budget that you can use to navigate things on your own. As the amount of weddings skyrockets, so too does the need for affordable and accessible solutions.

How Do You Do a Wedding on a Low Budget?

The idea of a nice wedding and a low budget can seem contradictory, largely because conventional wedding culture pushes expectations that are indeed all but impossible to manage without large sums of cash.

It is possible, though, to plan and host a wedding on a low budget (or even no budget at all). It just requires some extra thought, creative problem-solving, and patience.

The best way to save money is to identify areas where you can cut costs and those where you can’t. It’s also good practice to find ways to create or provide your own resources rather than outsourcing them from others, which we’ll discuss in more depth later.

How Much Does an Average Wedding Cost?

Though specific costs can vary by state in the U.S., the average cost of a wedding in 2022 falls somewhere between $25,000-$35,000, including the cost of an engagement ring.

This cost is a combination of things like wedding venues, entertainment, catering, décor, and more. Of course, this amount is hefty enough to be limiting.

Gone are the days where it’s realistic to expect to save for a wedding in a year or two or wondering how to plan a wedding on a budget in six months; for many people, this level of financial commitment is just too substantial to tackle quickly.

How Much Is a Small Wedding?

A “small” wedding of around 50 people or less can still cost upwards of $10,000-$15,000 thanks to the steep price of venues, food, and other key components of receptions. 

Other things, like wedding dresses, cake, and more, can also add to the price of the event regardless of how many guests are in attendance.

How to Plan a Wedding on a Shoestring Budget

How do you plan a wedding on a $1,000 budget? How do you plan a wedding for free? What steps can you take to make your costs as low and manageable as possible?

The following tips can help you answer these questions and more.

1. Aim for low-budget wedding venues.

In most traditional weddings, venue costs tend to take the cake; it’s not uncommon to see venue prices that cost up to $10,000 or more for a single evening. 

As a result, one of the easiest and most straightforward ways to ensure your wedding stays within your budget is to avoid conventional wedding venues, or at least those that charge a significant amount.

Places like a community church, a park, or even your home and backyard can provide great atmospheres for a wedding ceremony or reception without breaking the bank.

If you can keep your venue costs to a minimum, you’ll likely be able to bypass many of the other hefty costs that tend to be associated with wedding planning.

2. Consider easy ways to cut unnecessary costs.

It may go without saying, but finding ways to avoid paying for things that aren’t truly necessary is vital if you’re aiming for a low-cost or free wedding. 

There’s a lot of excitement and joy mixed into traditional wedding setups: elaborate food and drink spreads, live entertainment, and other fun (but expensive) elements may be the norm, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t still host a beautiful event without them.

Ask yourself which things matter the most to you: is having live music, for example, something that’s so important that you’re willing to take on any cost associated with it?

Some suggestions for ways to avoid superfluous costs at your wedding include:

  • Music: A live band or DJ can rack up thousands of dollars worth of expenses during a single event. Consider creating a playlist or mix ahead of time to use during your wedding, locating a more affordable instrumentalist, or opting for a venue that provides music and entertainment of its own.
  • Venue size and guest accommodations: While it’s still possible to make a larger wedding affordable, opting for a smaller guest list eliminates the need for lots of spending regardless of your setup.
  • Invitations and party favors: Instead of dishing out hundreds or thousands of dollars for these, think of ways to DIY them yourself. Also consider digital invitations or other alternatives.
  • 3. Think outside the box for food and refreshments. 

    The average cost of wedding catering per person can vary significantly depending on the place you’re sourcing the food from, the amount of people at your wedding, and the volume of food you’re working with. 

    Most wedding planners and couples end up spending around $75 per person on food alone. 

    To avoid these costs, don’t be afraid to get creative. Hosting a potluck-style reception is a great example of an easy solution; by encouraging each guest to provide a dish, you not only sidestep the need to order food, but also interact with each attendee and create a unique, intimate environment for all.

    Below are a few more ideas to give you some inspiration:

    • Serve cupcakes instead of a wedding cake; these can even be homemade if you’d like to save even more.
    • Ask guests to bring their own alcohol to the event should they choose to drink.
    • Ask guests to each bring their own dessert to share with the group instead of purchasing a cake.

    4. Choose simple or DIY-friendly décor.

    Creating your own décor instead of purchasing it can save you some money, but it also gives you the chance to have some fun and ensure your shoestring budget wedding is all you hoped it’d be.

    Choosing decorative elements you can put together yourself (floral bouquets, party backdrops, centerpieces, candles, napkin displays, etc.) makes it far easier to precisely control how much you’re spending.

    5. Opt for wholesale wedding linens.

    The last thing you want to worry about when planning a shoestring budget wedding is sacrificing the look of your setup, running out of what you need, or ending up with products that don’t match or last.

    Shopping for wholesale linens is one of the best ways to sidestep all of these potential obstacles and find what you need at the lowest price possible.

    By buying wholesale, you can get the same quality but for a lower price, because you are buying in bulk.

    Unique wedding linens can do a lot to diversify the look and overall environment of your wedding, so be sure to take some time to be thoughtful about your choices.

    Wholesale Linens for an Elegant, Simple Wedding: Our Recommendations

    Wholesale Table Linens

    Premium Poly Poplin as Tablecloth: With over 100 colors to choose from, it’s not hard to see why this classic and simple fabric is one of our most popular (and affordable)!


    Ribbon Mesh Lace as Overlay: This affordable lace tablecloth can be used in a smaller size as an overlay, which allows you to layer your linens to get a nicer look without spending much more. 

    Lush Chiffon as Table Runner: This gorgeous table runner can be used to make your table spread more interesting at a fraction of the cost of an actual tablecloth. Plus, it’s a great choice if you’re trying to create a definite centerpiece or center display for your tables. 


    Flower Chain Lace - Bargain shopper? Opt for sale items, like our Flower Chain Lace collection, instead of full price options to save some serious bank. This collection often goes on sales of up to 50%, so check to see what sales Urquid is offering today!

    Shop Closeout/ Clearance Linens

    We frequently post linens, table runners, and other products for event planning that are being sold at a deeply discounted price at this link: Closeout/Clearance (

    The wise planner will seek out those bargains, because on that page you can often find some of our most popular, beautiful linens for a very affordable price.

    Wholesale Chair Covers for Plastic Chairs

    Planning a shoestring budget wedding means choosing more affordable product options when you do shop, including the chairs and tables you use.

    It’s easier than you might think to make plastic folding chairs look elegant and put-together; something as simple as a chair cover, like our winkle free chair covers for plastic folding chairs, can make a huge difference.

    Shop Fitted Wrinkle Free Chair Covers

    These covers come custom fitted to most popular chair types and shapes, so they’re a great fit for just about any setup! 

    The unique shape and nature (guests sitting and standing) of chair covers leads to easy wrinkles that can be difficult to iron or steam out. 

    That’s why our covers are created to be wrinkle free; this helps you save time now and well into the future. 

    Whether you’re wondering how to cover inexpensive plastic folding chairs or simply looking to jazz up your table display, look no further than our selection here at Urquid.

    Final Thoughts

    It doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg to pay for a wedding; the most expensive parts aren’t even related to the marriage itself!

    With some careful planning, budgeting, and creativity, you can plan a wedding that’s both affordable and beautiful. With the help of tools like wholesale wedding linens, planning an event that doesn’t have to sacrifice experience for the price is more possible than ever.