The Worst Hidden Wedding Costs to Avoid

Don’t let yourself be charged $200 for someone to cut your wedding cake for you
Wedding Cake Toppers

Photo Modified: Flickr / Attila Hajdu / CC BY 4.0

Cutting a wedding cake is an expensive business.

Wedding planning and budgeting is a complicated and stressful process. The to-do list can seem never ending, you’ll constantly be thinking of more things that you’d forgotten to include in your plan, and the cost of your wedding will be forever increasing. On top of everything that you’ve got written down in that bursting notebook, don’t forget to include these hidden costs into your budget, or to find a way to avoid them, as otherwise they’ll end up catching you by a rather unpleasant surprise.


Many catering companies will charge you extra to cut your wedding cake up into slices. Although this is a job that may take a bit of time depending on the size of your cake and the number of guests, it’s not a job that is worth the $3 per slice many caterers often charge on top of their basic cost.


When planning a wedding, it’s very easy to get caught up in all the details of the buildup to the big day itself, and forget about what happens afterwards. Either your venue will charge for post-party clean-up, or you’re going to need a hire a team of people to come and do it for you.

Dress Alterations

The price tag on your chosen wedding dress is probably already rather large. Before you hand over your credit card, remember that that number you’re reading is only the starting point. Most stores and boutiques do not include the price of alterations in the original cost. Make sure you budget for at least a couple of hundred more dollars than the price tag states for a more realistic price of what the dress will cost.

Marriage License

Don’t forget that you actually need to pay for your marriage license — sadly it doesn’t come free! The price changes from state to state, so make sure you look up how much it’s going to cost you. If you want to actually have a copy of your license, you’re going to need to pay even more on top of the basic license cost.

Postage Costs

When you order your “save the date” cards and your invitations, make sure that they’re not an irregular, inconvenient size. Sending your invitations in a non-regular sized envelope will cost you so much more than if they were a standard size.

Thank You Cards

Invitations, orders of service, and menus, aren’t the only stationery you need. You’re also going to have to send out thank you cards after the wedding. Don’t forget about them and then send out cheap ones because you’ve run over your budget — thank you cards should be as beautiful and heartfelt as the rest of your wedding.

Vendor Meals

Your photographer will be spending the entire day working at your party, and so he or she is going to need feeding at some point! Don’t forget about your vendors’ food and drink needs: Make sure you give them something to keep them going throughout the day.

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