Before the "I Do's".

Often times you see engaged couples, worry over finding the right venue, florals, bakery, photography, finding the "perfect" dress, etc. However recently, I have seen a new growing concern amongst, engaged couples planning their wedding. "How do we still date one another, and have fun, when we are on a budget for our wedding?" "I don't want to fall out of love because we become a "boring" couple before we even get married". Understandably so, this can be a concern, especially for those who were always on the move, whether it was going to the movies every Friday, eating at fancy restaurants, or even going on multiple vacations every year. The reality is that weddings can be expensive, so setting a budget is always a good idea, and staying on budget is even more important. With that being said there are still a few ways you can find time to do some of the same things you used to do, with a slightly different twist. Below you will find a few tips on dating within your budget.

1.The Movie-Goers: Opt out of seeing your movie in IMAX, check out a Saturday Matinee, you can save close to $20 per couple, and if you were an every Friday type go-er like my husband and I, that's about $80 a month. Bigger picture: over a year that's over $900. Even changing standard viewing movies to matinees can save you about $300 a year. I also would suggest eating before arriving to movies, sometimes this helps but then sometimes the smell of movie theatre popcorn consumes you. LOL!

2.Restaurants: Most restaurants now have happy hour menus, sometimes serving the same thing as what's on the dinner menu, but at half the cost. Find out whether or not your favorite restaurants have happy hour, for drinks and food, and take your fiancé/ fiancee, for an early evening out. Then end the night at home watching a movie on demand or playing a board game to switch it up. If both of you are competitive, this should be fun and interesting.

3.Stay-cation is the new Vacation: Going out of the country or even on the opposite coast may not be ideal right now considering the cost of flights, and your budget, however a staycation or quick 1-2 hr getaway (car-ride) may be better. Whether you decide to get a hotel in your area or an hour away, try to plan it out a month in advance and look at the website for deals and cheaper rates. Plan your trip around the hotel's rates. While away or local check out the sites with your partner, most museums or monuments are free or charge very little. This will be a great time to take pictures and learn something new. If weather permits grab some snacks and deli meat from a local store and have a nice picnic in a park nearby, this will make for a nice romantic weekend.

I hope some of these tips help, and remember the wedding budget you are on, is only temporary. Things will be back to a "new" normal soon. At

least learning to compromise now and putting a twist on things you like to do, may help later in marriage, and when you have house and kids. Trust me, compromise is the key to success after the "I-dos" ;) LOL!!

#wedding #engaged #dating #budget

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