Growth in cut-price weddings

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Recession brides are cutting back on wedding extras and postponing major life events in a bid to save cash, a report has revealed – while around a third of couples still rely on the woman’s parents to foot the bill for their wedding.

Luxury wedding “essentials” such as a car and florist-crafted flowers are among the top items to face the cut as couples look to save costs, followed by shop-bought favours and professional table arrangements.

Couples also claim they are postponing major decisions such as buying a house or starting a family in a bid to finance their big day, according to the report by Nationwide. Others say they have cut back on holidays and travel.

More than a quarter of engaged couples say they are considering not getting married at all due to the high cost of a wedding, which recent research has put at an average of £21,939.

Graham Pilkington, divisional director of banking insurance and investment at Nationwide, said: “The cost of getting hitched can be huge, so much so that many people are making financial sacrifices elsewhere, others are planning to get wed on the cheap, whilst some are putting their big day on hold altogether.

“Relying on the bride’s parents to pay for your wedding is not possible for everyone, nor is it always practical to raid the piggybank, especially when we are talking about thousands of pounds! Planning your finances for a wedding is akin to buying your house; work out how much you can afford, prepare your budget and consider your finance options.”

According to the study, the majority of those who do not rely on the bank of Mum and Dad – just over two thirds of couples – will pay for the wedding themselves, whilst 16 per cent will rely on credit cards or loans.