The US dollar roared higher on Wednesday following some hawkish comments from Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell, following the US central bank’s latest interest rate decision.
But while there’s no doubt that your dream day could come at a cost, it's not necessarily true that you’ll have to dig a deeper hole in your savings if you want to get married abroad.
In fact, depending on your destination, you may find that it costs less than your typical wedding in the UK.
How does the cost of UK weddings compare to the rest of the world?
According to the 2019 Global Wedding Report compiled by The Knot, WeddingWire and Bodas.net, the average wedding in the UK costs £14,740.
While this is a significant fall from a 2018 survey suggesting the average cost was over £30,000, the UK is still the fifth most expensive country (out of the 13 surveyed) in which to get married.
The US tops this year’s survey with an average price of £22,419 – though this rises to around £28,000 if the engagement ring is included, as the old adage of spending three-month’s salary on the ring endures to this day.
On the other end of the spectrum there are countries like Colombia and Argentina, where the average wedding costs less than £3,000!
Saving money on your overseas wedding
We have several tips to help you make your budget stretch even further when planning your overseas wedding.
Just like at home, timing can have a huge impact on the cost of an overseas wedding. You may be dead set on the idea of a summer wedding but as this is also the peak tourism period, you and your guests could end up paying a fortune on travel costs alone.
Likewise, you should take into account the local event calendar. While spring and autumn are generally cheaper for weddings, a local event or festival could still cause prices to spike during these periods and potentially make it difficult to hire wedding services.
You should also look into what local taxes could be applied to your wedding. At 20% UK VAT is one of the highest tax rates in Europe, especially compared with the Canary Island were VAT is just 7%.
Meanwhile, in the US there are no VAT charges for wedding services, which could keep the costs down if you’re set on an All-American wedding – which can otherwise prove rather expensive!
Whilst it will cost you more upfront, taking out wedding insurance can save you a lot of money in the long-term should anything go wrong, such as delayed flights or illness.
Last, but certainly not least, it’s important to consider the exchange rate between the UK and your destination of choice.
In some countries you may find that a favourable exchange rate helps your money go further, and even factoring in the costs of flights it can work out cheaper to get married in countries like Thailand and Turkey.
Get the best value on your wedding currency transfer
If you’re seriously considering holding your wedding abroad then it's important to explore your currency transfer options to ensure you get the best value when paying for the venue, food etc.
While many choose to make their transfers through their high street bank, you could save time and money with our specialist currency transfer services.
We’ll make sure you secure an excellent exchange rate and we don’t charge transfer fees, giving you more to spend on all those special extras.
We also offer a range of services which can help you save even more when transferring money for your overseas wedding.
For instance, by using a Forward Contract you can fix an exchange rate for up to a year, giving you plenty of time to plan and budget, without having to worry about an unfavourable shift in the currency market ruining your big day.
And to top it off you can arrange all your transfers through our handy app, eliminating the stress and giving you more time to get back to planning your dream wedding!
Currencies Direct is one of Europe's leading non-bank providers of currency exchange and international payment services. Since we were formed in 1996, we've maintained our focus on providing innovative foreign exchange and international currency transfer services to corporations of all sizes, online sellers and private individuals. We have also expanded our services to provide dynamic and pioneering "business to business" solutions to help companies, tier 2/3 banks and other non-bank financial institutions to process their international payments. Our headquarters are in the City of London (United Kingdom) and we have operations in continental Europe, Africa, Asia, and the United States. Currencies Direct is jointly owned by private equity firms Palamon Capital Partners and Corsair Capital.