Recently engaged? Congratulations, to-be-weds! Love is in the air!
Unfortunately, those rose-tinted skies are almost always immediately darkened by a cloud of worry over wedding finances. According to The Knot, the 2013 national average for nuptial celebrations was $29,858, a price tag that many may find hard to stomach or even justify.
To help unburden budgets and save a little for the honeymoon, here are five freebies that couples anywhere in the country can put to use.
A Free Ride - Literally: App-based livery service Uber recently partnered with beloved wedding blog Style Me Pretty to offer couples an exclusive access code for guests to use during wedding weekends that fall between now and Labor Day 2015. The deal: Any users new to Uber can receive their first ride free up to $30. For more details and to receive your custom code, visit the Uber Blog.
A Free Shot: Pop-up photo booths have become ubiquitous at weddings in recent years, a trend that shows no signs of stopping. But nothing says you have to splurge for fancy backdrops and props. Look around the house for items such as old picture frames, wacky vintage spectacles and other items that can be repurposed to create an amusing photo opportunity. If that's not an option, consider downloading free printable mustaches, glasses and pipes in whatever colors match your wedding palette.
Try Before You Buy: Wedding invitation suites can get pricy fast. To ensure there is no buyer's remorse regarding color and paper quality, it's a good idea to see samples first. Most reputable invitation designers will offer these for free, such as Wedding Paper Divas, which allows up to eight different samples. "Simply choose any design, click on the 'Order Sample' button, then pick a color palette which ties in with your wedding theme and add the free wedding invitation sample to your cart," a WPD spokeswoman said. "Once you have eight designs picked out, just apply the code FREETRY at checkout and your stunning samples will be delivered right to your doorstep." In addition, Wedding Paper Divas will send along RSVP cards, color and paper swatches, a font options card and matching envelopes to review with them.
Treat Yourself: One of the best parts of deciding on a wedding cake is testing out different flavors and icings. When stress reaches an all-time high, set aside an appointment for some sweet relief in the form of a free wedding cake sample appointment.
Track Every Penny, While Saving a Dime: The WeddingHappy app, free on iTunes, allows brides and grooms to organize the wedding planning process by task, syncs contact lists, and sends alerts as you make progress toward the big day. It's like having a wedding planner in your pocket, minus the fee.