Post-engagement, wedding planing took off. I started realized a lot of these large charges at once from deposits could really help me hit minimum spend, so I got the Chase Ink (50k) and moved my work spending to that, and I already had the Chase Sapphire while it was still at a 50k miles bonus spend. I was working on spending $25,000 on my US Airways Mastercard to receive 10,000 elite qualifying miles, so that threw in a further complication.
But it quickly taught me a few quirks about wedding planning.
First, a lot of places will give you a discount for paying in cash. Once I calculated that I could still hit my minimum spend without all these places, I realized that it was not worth it to pay via credit card for the miles. Collecting miles is such a game sometimes that I actually had to remind myself of the logic of not using the credit cards. Also, there are smaller family oriented business I just wanted to pay in cash so they wouldn’t lose money on the credit card transaction costs.
Second–deals? What deals? As someone who scours the internet in search of the best deal possible, I had a hard time dealing with there being no “deals” in the wedding industry. Even on sites like Ebay, etsy, and RecycledBride, they caught on that brides will pay top dollar to get what they want. Towards the end of wedding planning, I caught myself saying on the phone, “Just an extra $150? No problem, that’s nothing!” What?! This is from someone who jumped up and down in a store when I realized my Macy’s card gave me 10% off on top of the 50% off sale I just benefited from.
Third–people will ask you the details about your honeymoon more than the details of weddings. The logic makes sense to me. You have no idea how stressed a bride is or isn’t about wedding details, and the honeymoon is that safe haven post-wedding they can look forward to no matter what. Blogging on travel makes things even worse because people cannot wait to hear about the amazing trip you have planned. The only problem is, the wedding can get so big that there’s no time to handle those details! I had booked hotel and flights, but had no idea what we were doing after we checked into the hotel. I didn’t even read any travel guides on it. The honeymoon was based completely off a photo of a gorgeous garden I saw when I was a child that I was (fingers crossed) hoping would still be around.
And my last bit of advice for planning is, while you shouldn’t get caught up in the specific details of an event, please do get caught up in the “feel”. I didn’t have strong feelings at first about decor because I had some friends who were strongly disappointed about what their vendors told them the decor would look like vs. how it actually turned out. One of my friends poured over shades of pink with a vendor–the vendor asked her to–and then the vendor used a different shade. I think involving yourself in that level of detail can make you feel crazy because you had to make so many “important” decisions about unimportant things.
Finally, I realized I really did want a feel to the wedding, and worried it made me a bridezilla. I put together a pinterest board and brought my iPad around when I went to see vendors. I kept telling them, this is the feel I want of the wedding, and do whatever is best to achieve it. When the florist started asking me about specific flowers, I shrugged and just told him what I was allergic to (though in full disclosure, I was more high maintenance with my bridal bouquet :P).
This is what ended up making the wedding perfect for me. It felt the way I wanted it to feel, but I wasn’t so involved with the details that I would notice something out of place. Oh, and I had a ton of miles by the end.