How To Finance Wedding Purchases If You’re A Bridesmaid Or Groomsmen

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As exciting as weddings can be, they are a major life expense – both for the couple tying the knot and the guests who are involved in the wedding party.

Many wedding party events, like bachelor and bachelorette parties, can err on the expensive side especially when wedding party members are traveling for the events. A LendingTree survey from 2018 found that for a destination wedding, members of the wedding party spend an average of $ 1,580.

And, a consumer spend report from Affirm found that 36% of consumers have had to decline being part of the wedding party due to high costs. Between bachelor and bachelorette parties, the cost of attire, gifts and more, being in a wedding party can sometimes leave bridesmaids and groomsmen feeling as though they’ve bitten off more than they can chew financially – and when you consider macroeconomic forces, things can feel even more costly.

“The current economic environment has certainly had an impact on the wedding industry,” explains Liz Ewing, the CFO at Marcus by Goldman Sachs. “The price of consumer goods and services are continuing to rise, including many things that affect wedding party members, such as gas, airfare, and retail goods, which can cause bridesmaids and groomsmen to have to spend even more money to be part of the wedding festivities. “

If you’re in a wedding party and feeling a little on edge about the expenses, here’s what you can do to save up and put a little money back in your pocket.

Figure out your expenses ahead of time

“Map out expenses in advance, so that you can see how much you will need to save, or where you may need to compromise,” Ewing says.

And the earlier you start planning, the more time you’ll have to save up. Of course, much of this will fall onto the engaged couple to decide on their wedding party festivities and notify their wedding party in a timely manner. But once you find out the plans for the bachelor or bachelorette party, attire, bridal shower and any pre-wedding events, you should create a budget for the costs and start saving.

Instead of saving your money in a traditional savings account, you can consider putting your money in a high-yield savings account. These accounts – like the Ally Bank Online Savings Account and the Synchrony Bank High-Yield Savings account – pay you higher amounts of interest compared to traditional savings account. You likely won’t earn hundreds of dollars per month, but at least it could help your balance grow just a little quicker.

Ally Bank Online Savings Account

Ally Bank is a Member FDIC.

  • Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

  • Minimum balance

  • Monthly fee

    No monthly maintenance fee

  • Maximum transactions

    Up to 6 free withdrawals or transfers per statement cycle * The 6 / statement cycle withdrawal limit is waived during the coronavirus outbreak under Regulation D

  • Excessive transactions fee

  • Overdraft fees

  • Offer checking account?

  • Offer ATM card?

    Yes, if have an Ally checking account

Synchrony Bank High Yield Savings

Synchrony Bank is a Member FDIC.

  • Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

  • Minimum balance

  • Monthly fee

  • Maximum transactions

    Up to 6 free withdrawals or transfers per statement cycle * The 6 / statement cycle withdrawal limit is waived during the coronavirus outbreak under Regulation D

  • Excessive transactions fee

    None, but may result in account closure

  • Overdraft fees

  • Offer checking account?

  • Offer ATM card?

Another option is to save your money in a high-yield CD account. It’s similar to savings account except it holds your money for a specified period of time and allows you to earn typically higher amounts of interest. If you have less than a year to save for wedding party expenses, you might consider a CD account from Ally Bank, which offers account time frames from three months to five years.

Ally Bank High Yield CD

Information about the Ally Bank High Yield CD has been collected independently by Select and has not been reviewed or provided by the bank prior to publication. Ally Bank is a Member FDIC.

  • Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

    APY varies based on length of term. Click “Learn More” for details.

  • Minimum balance

  • Monthly fee

  • Early withdrawal penalty fee

    For 5-year CD (or any CD that is 49 months or longer): Equal to 150 days of interest

Turn to more affordable alternatives

Once you map out your expenses and create a plan for paying for them, you should try to stick to that plan. This, of course, is easier said than done.

“When confronted with higher prices and rising expenses, you might be tempted to go over your budget to overcome the setback,” Ewing says. “Rather than deviating from your financial plan, however, it can be beneficial to explore alternative courses of action.”

You might be wondering how many “alternatives” for wedding costs could possibly exist for members of the wedding party. But Ewing suggests, for instance, renting your dress or tuxedo instead of buying it, or doing your own hair and makeup instead of paying to have it professionally done. Other alternatives will depend on the plans for the wedding and wedding-related activities.

Pay with points instead of cash for destination weddings

American Express® Gold Card

On the American Express secure site

  • Rewards

    4X Membership Rewards® points at Restaurants (plus takeout and delivery in the US) and at US supermarkets (on up to $ 25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X), 3X points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com, 1X points on all other purchases

  • Welcome bonus

    Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $ 4,000 on eligible purchases within the first 6 months of card membership

  • Annual fee

  • Intro APR

  • Regular APR

  • Balance transfer fee

  • Foreign transaction fee

  • Credit needed

And if you’d rather consider a card with no annual fee, you might check out the Discover it® Miles card. Cardholders can earn an unlimited 1.5X miles for every dollar spent on purchases. But for higher spenders, Discover offers a welcome bonus that’s hard to beat: It will do a mile-for-mile match of all Miles earned the first year (for new card members in their first year only). If you rack up 35,000 miles within the first 12 months, Discover will match you with 35,000 miles. That’s a total of 70,000 miles you can redeem for $ 700 of travel.

Discover it® Miles

On Discover’s secure site

  • Rewards

    Automatically earn unlimited 1.5x Miles on every dollar of every purchase – with no annual fee.

  • Welcome bonus

    Discover will match all the Miles you’ve earned at the end of your first year.

  • Annual fee

  • Intro APR

    0% Intro APR for 15 months on purchases.

  • Regular APR

  • Balance transfer fee

    3% intro balance transfer fee, up to 5% fee on future balance transfers (see terms) *

  • Foreign transaction fee

  • Credit needed

Just keep in mind that the rewards points on credit cards are most useful when you’re able to pay off your balance in-full each month so you can avoid paying interest on your balance. Any interest you pay will most likely negate value of the rewards you earn.

Consider financing your purchases with a 0% APR card

Chase Freedom Flex℠

  • Rewards

    5% cash back on up to $ 1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate (then 1%), 5% cash back on travel booked through the Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3% on drugstore purchases and on dining (including takeout and eligible delivery services), 1% cash back on all other purchases

  • Welcome bonus

    $ 200 cash back after you spend $ 500 on purchases in your first three months from account opening

  • Annual fee

  • Intro APR

    0% for the first 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers

  • Regular APR

  • Balance transfer fee

    Intro fee of either $ 5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater, on transfers made within 60 days of account opening. After that, either $ 5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.

  • Foreign transaction fee

  • Credit needed

Bottom line

For rates and fees of the American Express® Gold Card, click here.

Editorial Note: Opinions, analyzes, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the Select editorial staff’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any third party.

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