Congratulations on your big news! You have a very exciting time ahead of you – planning for your wedding. Whether it will be a simple romantic wedding for the two of you, a blow-out extravaganza to celebrate with your friends and family or a destination wedding, there will be planning.


To begin this process you and your fiancé need to discuss your wants, needs and wishes. Then you need to prioritize! Is a 3 foot cake more important than large bouquets? Is a wedding arch more important than a sandy beach? Once you know which items are the most important you can focus your budget in that direction. Remember, when you increase the spending in one category – you are decreasing your spending in another. Too many couples increase but forget about decreasing!

When doing research in wedding budgets to help our couples out, it seemed the easiest way to do this was to give you the percentages of what each item should amount too. Since you will all have different total budgets this is the way I can help most couples. I will give you guidelines in each area and then you can adjust what percentage you would like for your priorities by increasing the percentage in that area and decreasing it in another. To get what amount each category would be, simply multiply your budget by that percentage. For example if your total budget is $5,000 and your reception menu should be 29 % the suggested percentage would be 5000 x .29 = $1450.

Not everyone will have a reception or need some of the items on this list. You can then add those percentages to areas that you desire to have. Just remember, once you set your budget commit to sticking to it!


Hair and Make-up .85%
Coordinator 9.00% (less expensive in Hawaii than on the mainland)
Save the Date Cards 30% (Necessary for a destination wedding)
Invitations 1.50%
Postage .45%
Bridal Gown 6.45% (Many brides use the on-line bargains!)
Jewelry, Lingerie, Shoes .50%
Groom’s Attire .75%
Shoes + for Groom .25%
SUB TOTAL  20.05%


Facility Rental .75%
Petal Aisle .25%
Flowers for Arch/Aisle Chairs 35%
Minister/Officiant .40%
Marriage License .25% (In Hawaii, it will be $70 total)
Photographer  7.00%
Videographer 4.00%
Bridesmaid’s Bouquets  1.00%
Boutonniere’s/Mother’s Flowers .75%
Music 1.50%
Bride’s Bouquet .70%
Limo 1.50%
Guest Transportation .50%
SUB TOTAL 18.95%


Beverages 5.00%
Wedding Cake 2.00%
Food/Servers/Tax/Gratuity 29.00%
Facility Rental 6.00%
Rental Chairs/Tables/Linens 4.00%
Music  4.00%
Favors  1.00%
Guest Book/Flutes/Cake Knife .50%
Attendant Gifts .60%
SUB TOTAL 52.10%



This gives you an additional 6.90% to add to where you believe you would like to spend more or to leave “just in case” which is what we suggest.

Happy Planning!

Much Aloha,