Planning a wedding is already stressful as it is, and it becomes a real challenge when you choose to do it without the help of a wedding organizer. There are a lot of things that need to be prepared for your dream wedding to turn into reality.

There are, however, ways to make planning a beautiful wedding less stressful. You can still have your dream wedding without jumping through hoops. You just have to keep these top 10 expert tips in mind as you begin planning your wedding.

Research Your Date

Setting a date for your wedding is the first thing you want to do. The wedding market has trends – ups and downs – and knowing how to time your wedding will give you a huge advantage. At the very least, you won’t have to worry about not being able to secure the venue that you want or having to fight for the catering service that you prefer.

The internet is your friend when it comes to researching your date. Once you have a couple of dates in mind, find out if there are big events, conferences, and other local events on the same days. You can also research if there are a lot of other weddings or if the particular date is attractive to couples (i.e., when you choose to get married on October 10th or 10/10).

Make a Guest List

Guests are the next thing to focus on. You need to go beyond setting the number of guests that you want to invite and actually make a list of guests for the wedding. This is usually the most stressful part of planning a wedding, which means getting it out of the way early will help you deal with the rest of the planning process easily.

Choosing the guests to invite can be complicated when you have a lot of relatives and friends. If you would rather have a small wedding, make sure you think about gifts to send. Sending gifts to announce the wedding – instead of an invitation to the reception – will let everyone know that you are thinking about them, but you are not comfortable with a large reception.

Set a Budget

Next, you want to know exactly how much you can afford to spend on the wedding. This means creating a budget for the wedding. This, too, is a step that can help eliminate a lot of the challenges further down the road. When you have a clear and firm number in mind, you can plan the rest of the wedding based on the budget you have in hand.

Budgeting also lets you prioritize your wedding expenses. For instance, you can put food and beverages ahead of decoration if you want an intimate wedding filled with happy guests. By knowing how much you can afford to spend on each expense, you can also limit your search to vendors and services you can afford, saving you a lot of time in the process.

Book and Secure

With the budget out of the way, you can now prioritize securing services and other wedding elements as early as possible. You may even get discounts and special offers when booking these services early. Just remember one thing: it is never too early to book your venue, a live wedding band, and your catering service.

Finding the right services to book is a lot easier now that you can search for everything online.

Save and Splurge

Another big advantage of having a budget in mind is the ability to find the best deals and manage your wedding expenses as you begin comparing and choosing services. Using the previous example of looking for the best wedding band for hire, having a clear budget lets you negotiate a better deal and compare your options better.

Getting the best deal when you hire a wedding band UK performer means you can allocate the money you save on other expenses. When you want to add additional dishes to your wedding menu, you can do that without spending more money on the wedding. You will find plenty of opportunities to save and reallocate funds along the way.

Use Credit

If you really want to save on your wedding, take advantage of cashback and other special offers from credit card companies. Before you begin using your cards to pay for wedding services, however, make sure you spend some time learning about the different deals and reward programs that credit card companies now offer.

You can even consider opening a new reward card if the offers are attractive enough. This will further maximize the amount of money you can save on the wedding, plus you may get additional freebies – such as a free trip to exotic destinations – as you spend more money. The reward points are practically free since you are spending the money anyway. Shop now.

Get Help

You don’t have to do everything on your own. It is sometimes best to ask for help from close friends and relatives if you don’t plan on using a wedding organizer. Getting help is a great way to make the mountain of tasks associated with planning a wedding more manageable. You can even put some of your closest friends in charge of certain parts of the wedding.

Don’t hesitate to ask for help from the people around you. You are sharing this beautiful moment with them, and they will be more than happy to help make your dream wedding come true. Don’t forget to reward them after a successful wedding too. Small, meaningful gifts work best for this kind of occasion, and they will be appreciated more too.

With these 7 expert tips in mind, planning your own wedding doesn’t have to be stressful and complicated. After all, you know exactly the complex things that you need to do, and you now have the tips on how to make those complex tasks more manageable from the beginning.