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Feb 20, 2012

Can You Really Have a Cheap Las Vegas Wedding?

Can You Really Have a Cheap Las Vegas Wedding?

Also see Las Vegas wedding package deals, and advice for Vegas weddings

cheap las vegas weddings, cheap vegas wedding, wedding vegas cheapOne of the main reasons for getting married in Las Vegas is that you can have a cheap Vegas wedding for only a few hundred dollars.

Since most weddings cost over fifty times more than that, planning your wedding in Vegas can save you a lot of money when compared to having a traditional wedding in your hometown. And Vegas weddings have a certain allure to them - an element of fun that other weddings just don't have.

Why is it that Vegas weddings are so inexpensive? There are a few reasons.

Las Vegas Weddings are Cheap Because...

There are Fewer Guests

As with any destination wedding, only a certain number of your friends and family will be able to make the trip to Las Vegas. When your guest list dwindles, so do the costs of your ceremony and reception.

Chapels, and casino hotels often have more intimate settings that can rented at a cheaper price and allow for fewer guests. If you are set on inviting lots of people to your wedding, consider having an intimate gathering in Vegas and then have a larger post-wedding party when you return home.

cheap las vegas weddingsThey are Less Elaborate

For a wedding with no frills, you can get married in Las Vegas cheap, for about $150. Unless you're going down to the courthouse, there aren't a lot of other places where you can married so cheaply. A basic wedding package at around the $100 mark is very bare bones.

But even if you do opt to have the deluxe package, your wedding probably won't be as complex as a wedding planned at home. Small things (like wedding favors for example) won't be included in your wedding package. Will you miss all of those details? Probably not. Vegas weddings do cover all of the bases like flowers and music.

They are Packaged

Because nearly every aspect of your wedding will be handled through the chapel or casino hotel you choose, the price will be lower. Though Vegas weddings start at around $150, the prices go up from there as packages grow to include photography, champagne, limo service, a wedding cake and flowers. But Las Vegas wedding prices are still very reasonable when you can get all of those things for around $1000. True, you might end up paying for some items that you don't need as part of the package, but even so, you'll still be getting an excellent deal.

One caveat of these inexpensive packages is that they often require that you exclusively use on-site photography and florist services. So, you will want to check on the quality of the photographer and florist provided through the ceremony site.

cheap vegas weddings

There's a lot of competition

Believe it or not, but weddings are the second highest income producer for Vegas. Number one is gambling of course. With all of that competition comes fairer prices. Lots of wedding chapels will even match package prices of other locations to get your business.
Tips for Having a Cheap Las Vegas Wedding

Book During Off-Season Times

Like many other vacation spots, Las Vegas experiences some seasonality. Through the year, there are highs and lows in the amount of people visiting and getting married in the city. Take advantage of the lull and plan your wedding during a slower time of year. Lots of Vegas wedding venues offer cheap packages for off-season nuptials. Your guests won't have trouble reserving a hotel room and it will be easier for them to get into shows and restaurants during their stay. Busier dates to avoid include most holidays, especially Valentine's Day and New Year's Eve.

Get Married on a Weekday

Because lots of people work 9-5 Monday to Friday, most couples get married during the weekend. To have a cheaper wedding in Vegas, do it during the week. Casino hotels and chapels offer inexpensive packages for couples who get married Monday through Thursday. If your family and friends are somewhat flexible, consider saying your vows during the week.

Shop Around

There are so many casinos, hotels and chapels offering wedding packages in Las Vegas that it has become a very competitive business. Use the competition to your advantage and compare prices before you make a decision. Don't be afraid to talk with the vendors about the other packages you're considering. More often than not, they will throw in some extras or lower the price in order to get your business.

Go Cheap on the Wedding Ceremony

Another way to cut costs is to do the most inexpensive wedding package for your ceremony (only spending about $200) and then spend the rest of your budget on the reception. Yes, the wedding ceremony is important, but most people make the most memories and have the most fun during the wedding reception. Spending the excess of your wedding fund on the reception will allow you to do it in an upscale environment. Even if you have a very modest budget, when you spend only a few hundred dollars on the ceremony, you'll have plenty of money left for a great reception with wonderful food.

Use Group Rates For Your Las Vegas Wedding

When you have your wedding ceremony in a hotel, ask about special hotel rates for you and your guests. Often your hotel stay will be part of the wedding package or deeply discounted and your guests' rooms will have lower rates. Since the hotel stay can add up as part of a destination wedding, using a special rate can save you a lot of money.

Cheap Wedding Gown

How To Find The Perfect Cheap Wedding Dress

Finding a cheap wedding gown can be difficult and in desperation I know of many brides who have rushed in to buy any dress because they were getting panicky. Then end up selling it when they find the perfect dress.

To help you find your cheap wedding dress here are the best places to find them.

Where To Find The Best Cheap Wedding Dresses
Full list of where to find your cheap wedding dress.

Looking for a very cheap wedding gown?

Davids Bridal is a hugely popular wedding dress company, if you are looking to find a cheap Davids Bridal dress for you wedding, have a look at the one's that I have found by following the link below.

How to find cheap Davids Bridal wedding gowns

If a designer wedding dress is your dream you will be pleased to know it is possible to find cheap designer wedding dresses a definate wow for your guests and your wallet!

And you have to read how to find discounted designer wedding dresses at the shows.

Is buying a cheap wedding dress from China worth it? Have a look at my research on simple cheap wedding dresses from China.

Perfect Wedding Dress Finder
A guide providing tips and advice helping brides choose, find, buy and alter their perfect wedding dress!

Where to start when looking for brides dresses.

A Cheap Vegas Wedding Where Are The Cheap Wedding Chapels

A cheap Vegas wedding is a fun alternative to spending a fortune on a wedding at home. But where are you going to get married? The average cost of a ceremony and reception is around $20,000. But for a fraction of that you could have a creative and entertaining inexpensive Vegas wedding. If you choose this route, here are a couple of ideas.

Cheap Wedding Solutions
The Graceland Wedding Chapel

One of the most famous wedding chapels on the Las Vegas strip, Graceland offers a traditional wedding package for under $200. The package includes the chapel, wedding music, a small bouquet, a boutonniere, photography, a wedding certificate holder, and photos (6 4 X 6 images and 1 8 X 10). You’ll need an extra $50 for the minister and $60 for the marriage license, too. Altogether, you could get hitched for a little over $300. You could easily win that much at blackjack.

Of course, most people don’t go to the Graceland Wedding Chapel just for a cheap Vegas wedding. They want an Elvis wedding. For $329, you can have everything in the $200 package, plus an Elvis impersonator will give the bride away and sing three of “his” songs. You’ll also receive a copy of the marriage certificate given to Elvis and Priscilla when they tied the knot. Remember you’ll still have to pay the minister and marriage license fees separately, but that’s a lot cheaper than most of your local wedding options.
A Little White Chapel Tunnel of Love
cheap vegas wedding, by Lola's Big Adventure

If the Graceland prices were too expensive, you might want to consider the drive thru special offered at the Little White Chapel. You can get married for as little as $40 if you use your own car. You’ll need the marriage license, of course, but this is one of the most affordable and bare bones wedding ceremonies you can find, even in Las Vegas.

For roughly $100 more, you can choose one of the upgraded drive thru wedding specials which include a courtesy limo, keepsakes, a rose, a ceremony, and a few other extra. If you don’t want to get married in your car, the chapel has several other venue options available.
Treasure Island Hotel

While the above are examples of cheap Vegas weddings, you’d be surprised how much a few hundred dollars more might get you in Las Vegas. If you head to Treasure Island, for example, you can snag their Elegance Wedding Package for only $599 (you have to pay $100 more on the weekend). For that price, you’ll have the services of a wedding coordinator and an officiant to perform, a bouquet and boutonniere, a private dressing room, thirty minutes in the chapel for the service, bridal garter keepsake, choice of CD musical accompaniment, a bottle of wine, professional photography including a wedding album of 12 4 X 6 pictures, and a personalized copy of your wedding certificate.
The Venetian

If you don’t mind spending $800 on your cheap Vegas wedding (or $900 if it’s a weekend or holiday), you should go to the Venetian Hotel & Casino. The hotel offers a wedding package at this price point that lets you exchange vows on an authentic Venetian gondola while floating on the Grand Canal. The package includes the gondola and the officiant, as well as a bouquet, boutonniere, and two 5 X 7 photos.

Because Vegas is home to so many chapels, you’re going to find plenty of options for a cheap Vegas wedding and maybe even a not-so cheap Vegas wedding. Remember to book your wedding in advance if you’re going through most of the hotels and even some of the chapels. If you’re not sure if reservations are needed, call ahead and ask so you don’t arrive and end up disappointed on your wedding day. Keep in mind you will need the money for the marriage license, as well as the costs of the wedding package you choose. Plan on spending at least one night in Las Vegas, too. You can always call it the start of your honeymoon.


The following tips and suggestions are for both locals and out-of-towners. Over the last few years, I have photographed countless Las Vegas weddings and have acquired information that will hopefully help you plan your ideal wedding. Some of the following ideas are photography-based (marked by *), but most are general and beneficial to everyone. Remember, you’re basically planning a big—or not so big—party. Planning should be fun—don’t even consider stressing out.
If you and your fiancé are like most couples, you’ll probably figure out the DATE and the VENUE first.
DATE When it comes to weather, April, May, September, and October are generally beautiful in Las Vegas. March and November can be pleasant as well, but they are still “wildcard” months—some days are perfect as paradise, others are brisk and windy. Speaking of wind, Las Vegas has a lot of it. In fact, it is blowing hard as I type this right now. Wind isn’t going to make or break your big day, though, so don’t worry. I just want to give you a heads up on what Las Vegas is capable of—and for those of you who are allergy-prone, don’t forget the Claritin. Although wind can be a bit annoying, it’s not half as bad as rain. Since it rarely rains in Las Vegas, the chance of having a bright sun and clear skies on your wedding day is very good—hooray! June, July and August are scorching hot, but you probably knew that already. If you are planning a summer wedding, plan it accordingly. For example, don’t schedule a one-hour ceremony on the un-shaded golf course at noon—trust me, it’s no fun for anyone. (And if your family is anything like mine, they’ll never let you live it down).
Late November through February is considered the “off season” for weddings. If you plan on getting married during these months, keep in mind that you may qualify for a discounted rate from the vendors you hire (i.e. reception hall, photographer, DJ, etc). In addition, getting married on a weekday (Monday through Thursday) may qualify you for another discount. Since most weddings are generally on the weekend, most vendors are willing to offer a discount during these days since the demand is much lower. My business offers 20% off any weekday wedding and I know other wedding vendors who do the same. Just ask and see. You may be surprised at the deal that is in store for you!
VENUE There are four types of venues to choose from:
Wedding Chapel
Country Club/Reception Hall
Private Residence
WEDDING CHAPEL There are various reasons why couples choose to get married in a Las Vegas wedding chapel: it’s cheap, it’s quick, it’s “Vegas” and Elvis might make an appearance. There may be additional reasons, but those are the main ones. Depending on the wedding you want to plan, this may be the perfect option for you. In and out! Those are the three best words to describe a typical Las Vegas wedding chapel. The ceremony is 10 minutes maximum, the following wedding is 5 minutes after yours, and there is no time to dillydally. After vows are exchanged, the staff photographer takes you and your new spouse to a few set locations, snaps some photos, and moves on to the next couple. Lingering is not encouraged and some chapels will repeatedly remind you that your package was 20 minutes—not 23 minutes—so please make room for the next wedding since there is limited parking and no one wants to meter park. If you want quick, inexpensive, and informal, getting married in a wedding chapel is the way to go.
* If photos are important to you, hire an outside photographer. Wedding chapels generally include photography in their wedding packages, but the photos tend to be so-so quality, cheesy poses, and overpriced. The staff photographers at wedding chapels only photograph on property and have set poses. If you want a photo tour on the Strip or more photographs at other locations, hire a photographer to pick up where the staff photographer leaves off. This way, you’ll get a much wider range of backdrops and poses. To sum it up, pay for the wedding package with the least amount of photos and use the extra money to hire an outside professional for a couple hours. This is assuming photos are important to you; if they aren’t, make life easier by ordering the package you want and just ask Uncle Bob to snap a few extra for Facebook. 
CHURCH A church is clearly the most traditional venue. Most churches do not have the urgent time constraints of wedding chapels, but they will be more expensive to rent. One benefit to getting married in a church is that you will probably already know the officiant and church event planner. Because of this, you can communicate your needs with them directly and ahead of time.
* Some churches have photographers they work with and it is a good idea to consider them since they have experience with the property and know “the rules” (yes, churches have rules when it comes to photography—keep reading). Churches, unlike some reception halls, do not force you to hire one of their preferred photographers and there is no additional fee for bringing in an outside photographer. Depending on the church, flash photography may not be allowed. In addition, some churches have certain areas that photographers and videographers cannot enter. Neither of these restrictions should be a problem if your photographer has the necessary equipment to work under these conditions. Just make sure to find out the specific rules from the event planner and communicate them to your photographer and videographer. It’s nice when everyone is on the same page!
COUNTRY CLUB/RECEPTION HALL These two venues are in the same category since my experiences with them have been identical. The main reason people choose to get married at a country club or reception hall is because it is all-inclusive. This means that you can do everything in one place—get dressed, exchange vows, dance the night away, etc. This is especially advantageous if you and/or your guests are from out of town and directions aren’t your strong suit. Having everything in one place assures you that Aunt Doris from Daytona won’t end up at the Hoover Dam Visitor Center when she is supposed to be in the front row at your ceremony.      
PRIVATE RESIDENCE I have photographed several weddings at private residences and I think it is a wonderful idea. Renting out a nice house, especially in this economy, is not as expensive as you may think. It also gives you maximum control of your wedding day. You can hire any vendor you want, rearrange the details to your liking, set up days before, and establish the exact times you want. You want a sunset ceremony? Done. You want to crash 50 feet from the spot where you got married? No problem. You don’t always have the luxury of so many options at reception halls and wedding chapels. Do keep in mind that you will have neighbors and some of them will take advantage of the opportunity to get all riled up and call the police two seconds into “The Cha Cha Slide” (this happened at a wedding I shot last year). One remedy to this situation is to forewarn the nearby residents that you’re getting married and they’ll probably forgive you if your reception is rowdy and they lose sleep.   
These tips will hopefully get you started on the right path and give you an idea of what to expect when you get married in fabulous Las Vegas. Everything written above is based on my experiences and/or opinions from the last five years photographing Las Vegas weddings.
Good Luck and Enjoy the Journey!

Cheap Vegas Wedding Guide -What You Need to Know

Cheap Vegas Wedding Facts Here

If you're looking at a cheap Vegas wedding but still want the best the town has to offer, you've come to the right place. This is your complete Cheapskate's Guide to spectacular yet affordable Sin City ceremonies. We can show you how to make your nuptials unforgettable AND save lots of money. (We can not, however, find you someone to marry. You'll have to do that on your own.)

Where else can you can get hitched in a drive through or have an Elvis impersonator sing during your ceremony? There's a reason why more than 10,000 couples a month exchange vows in Sin City. If you're considering it yourself, use this guide to find out if a cheap Vegas wedding is the right move for you:

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Elvis' Guide to Finding a Vegas Wedding Chapel Cheap & Everything Else You Need to Know About Getting Hitched in Sin City
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Cheap Las Vegas Wedding Chapels: Look High & Low
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Ten Cheap Wedding in Vegas Tips
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Pitfalls of Las Vegas Cheap Weddings
We list the pitfalls and dangers you should avoid when you consider Las Vegas cheap weddings. Click here to out what to expect... and what to avoid.