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If 2019 is the year you’re planning to say “I do”, you’ve probably got the B word on the brain. Yup, we’re talking about your budget. And while it’s not exactly romantic, it’s definitely necessary.

According to Weddingbells Magazine, the average expected cost of a wedding in Canada is roughly $30,000. To help keep you (and your wallet) in check, we asked finance expert Melissa Leong to share some tips.

Make a plan

No, this isn’t your dream plan that has taken over your Pinterest board. Sit down with your other half and talk about your financial future (i.e – “This reception venue is gorgeous but I have to buy a car next year, so maybe we have to go with a different place.”)

Work with numbers

After the venue/meals are booked, couples can spend an equal figure on secondary vendors (i.e. photographer, florist, etc.) Create a detailed budget and build in a contingency fund for unplanned expenses.

Set your priorities

Once you have a budget, if you want to add something, you must subtract from elsewhere. You want to invite your new co-worker? Cut your dentist from the invite list. Splurging on your DJ? Reduce how much you’re spending on flowers.

Avoid a summertime wedding

Have your wedding on a Friday, a Sunday or in the “off season”. It’s typically cheaper.

Rent your attire

Say “yes” temporarily to the dress. Consider renting your gown from online retailers. Alternately, you can sell your dress on sites like Kijiji after your big day.

Skip stuff altogether

Instead of guest favours, for example, have your emcee announce you’ve made a donation in their names to your favourite charity.

Do It Yourself (or rely on friends)

With a little patience (and teamwork from willing friends and family), you can cross a lot off your to-do list—and save a lot of money. Do you own bouquets and rely on friends for things like photography and desserts.