Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Nuptial Costs: All You Need Is Love, and an Evening Espresso Bar at Your Wedding

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Nuptial Costs: All You Need Is Love, and an Evening Espresso Bar at Your Wedding

Article excerpt

My love don't cost a thing, but weddings do

--

TORONTO - Whoever said love doesn't cost a thing wasn't planning a wedding.

Recently-engaged couple Camille Verschooris and Andrew Lounsbury knew tying the knot was expensive, but they didn't realize how pricey it could be until they found out their $30,000 budget wasn't enough to cut it for the wedding of their dreams.

"The budget got thrown out of the window quickly," said Verschooris, a 24-year-old producer's assistant.

"What we imagined was very different than what we could afford," added 29-year-old Lounsbury.

The couple was faced with a big decision: Do they scale back on the party they wanted? Or do they bite the bullet and up how much they were willing to spend?

Ultimately -- with help from their parents -- they decided to splurge on a wedding they would want to attend, complete with a guest photo booth and a $1,200 espresso bar to be rolled out at the end of the night.

For Verschooris, the greatest sticker shock was not from the big-ticket items like the wedding gown ($5,000) or the photographer (another $5,000), but it was how quickly the small expenses pushed up the bill. Having lights and sound at a wedding and bringing in the linens, china and decorations are considered extra requests -- and come with accompanying fees.

Wedding planner Rebecca Chan says one of the biggest costs for a wedding is a venue, which can eat up to half of a couple's total budget.

For example, a wedding venue in downtown Toronto can charge between $150 to $300 per person, just for the meal.

Chan recommends couples multiply that figure by the number of guests attending and getting a full cost estimate of everything they need for the venue -- from chair rentals to speakers -- for a more realistic idea of the final bill.

Then add up all the miscellaneous costs like hiring an officiant, coat check and transportation to and from the ceremony site, she said. …

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