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Cut Your Wedding Costs By Shopping Smart

Jul 13, 2008
Anyone who has ever had a big wedding knows how expensive they can be. That's why the number one concern on just about any bride and groom's list is how to stay within a budget.

Today's couples have so many reasons to want to save money on the big day. With rising costs for basic necessities such as housing, food and gas it is often hard to make ends meet, even with dual incomes. After the dream wedding the bride and groom may start planning for their dream home and starting a family. Perhaps there are children involved from a previous a marriage. If so then merging these two families will bring additional expenses.

Fortunately, brides can save money in a variety of ways. One of the most popular ways to save money is by shopping on eBay and other online auction websites. You can truly find just about anything at online auction websites. Brides can find wedding favors, accessories, bridesmaids' dresses and even their wedding dress! Actually selling wedding dresses on eBay has become quite popular. One man actually sold his wife's wedding dress after their divorce. His funny listing had him wearing the size 12 gown and talking about his troubles with his ex-wife. By the end of the listing, not only had he sold the gown for a good price -- he'd gotten five wedding proposals from single women!

Before bidding on any type of online auction decide exactly how much you are willing to pay for an item. Many times you will be happy to pay much less than you were willing to spend but other times the bidding can get fierce. This might happen if you and several other brides are interested in a particular item that is hard to find. By keeping a budget in mind you wont have any second thoughts about how much money you've spent.

One challenge of shopping online auctions is that you can't closely inspect or try on items first. When buying something like a wedding gown this can be a challenge. Some sellers may offer a return policy if the item wasn't what you expected but with many auctions all sales are final. Either way be sure to check the feedback of the seller and ask any questions about the item and return policy before bidding. Also keep in mind that if you purchase something that you can't use you could always resell it yourself!

Another way to save is by shopping at consignment shops. These stores have been around for years with many specializing in wedding gowns. Check locally or online for consignment shops near you.

The one disadvantage of consignment shops is the lack of variety. You may find the wedding gown of your dreams at a great price but if it isn't your size then unless it can be altered you are out of luck. As for alterations, try to find an experienced seamstress even before you start looking. Many bridal shops will do alterations for you but most consignment shops wont. Having someone available to make a too large gown fit just right means you have several more options when shopping for your dress.

Another challenge with consignment shopping is that you need to be able to make your decision pretty quickly. You don't want to take the chance that someone else would take your bridal gown tomorrow or this afternoon. Bring your mother, sister or whoever you want to give input. Be ready to make up your mind. Understand that the minute the gown leaves your hands, it is gone. Another bride can come in and buy it right out from under you. In a bridal store, they can always order another copy of the dress. This is not so in a consignment store.

Either way, shopping on eBay or in consignment shops can save you a lot of money. Your wedding gown alone can end up costing less than half what you would have normally paid. If you are flexible about what you purchase for your wedding and reception you will have plenty of options to save money. After the big day is over you will have plenty of great memories and maybe even some extra money in the bank for your future!
About the Author
Visit Wedding Rings and Things.net to help you plan your special day. Check out a variety of like new wedding gowns, bridesmaid dresses and more at a fraction of the original price.
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