How to pick the perfect wedding date

11 Jul 2018

Struggling to settle on a date for your wedding? Here’s our guide for getting it right

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Image gallery

Selecting the perfect wedding date is a task that many couples find difficult. Availability of family members, national holidays, budget and weather are all factors that must be taken into consideration to ensure your big day runs smoothly. If you’re struggling to set a date for your wedding, take a look at our foolproof guide below for help and inspiration.

Budget

Your budget is one of the first things you should consider when setting your wedding date. Getting married in peak wedding season (May to September in the UK) will be more expensive than opting for an off-peak (October to April in the UK) date. Similarly, weekends are popular for weddings, so choosing to tie the knot on a weekday will save you significant money. Furthermore, the length of your engagement will dictate how long you have to save up for your special day – a long engagement will give you plenty of time, while a shorter engagement is only recommended if you already have money saved up in advance or if your wedding is being paid for by somebody else.

Events and holidays

There are certain events and holidays that you should take into consideration when trying to pick the perfect date for your wedding. Family birthdays and anniversaries should be avoided unless you want to share the spotlight with the family member(s) in question, and busy holidays such as Christmas may mean that certain guests are unable to attend due to prior plans. Local and national events, such as significant sporting events, festivals or other celebrations should also be crossed off the list – for example, many 2018 brides are having to compromise with their guests due to the World Cup matches. Remember to also think about your guests and whether or not a date within the school holidays would be more convenient for them.

Weather

The season in which you get married is important for many reasons, not just the budget. You should think about your comfort levels – as well as those of your guests – in certain temperatures and weather. It’s all very well wanting to have a mid-summer wedding in August, but think about the level of heat you’re able to withstand, particularly in a large and heavy wedding dress. Similarly, winter weddings can be beautiful, but you don’t want to freeze or cause discomfort to your guests. Take a look at weather prediction websites, which amalgamate the average temperature and conditions from previous years on a particular date, to see whether your chosen date will be suitable.

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Give yourself time

As mentioned before, the length of your engagement will determine how long you have to save up for your big day. However, it’s also important to give yourself enough time to successfully plan, organise and book your preferred suppliers. Many wedding professionals are fully booked a year or more in advance, so if you’re planning a six-month engagement period you might miss out on the high-quality local suppliers you wanted. Likewise, if you’re ordering your wedding dress from a bridalwear boutique instead of purchasing a high-street dress or an off-the-peg garment, it may take up to or longer than nine months to come in – and then you need to allocate time for alterations.

Ask your family

Your wedding isn’t just about you; it’s also about your guests and, more importantly, your family members. If the date you’ve chosen is inconvenient for your parents or other significant family members, they may end up missing it. Make sure to ask your family members and those of your partner’s family whether there are any particular dates that should be avoided due to work, important appointments or any other reason. You should also check whether any specific days of the week are out of the question, and how much notice they’d need in order to book a day off work or rearrange any previously organised plans.

Contact your preferred venue(s)

There is no point in settling on a date if your favourite venue(s) are unable to host you on that day. Get in touch with the venues you’re looking at to check their availability – many venues are fully booked years in advance, so you may have to compromise on your selected date if they’re unable to fulfil your request. In a lot of examples, a bride and groom’s wedding date is determined solely by what is available at their selected venue. This makes it easy if you’re still struggling to choose your date, but can be disappointing for those that have their heart set on a specific date.