Everyone knows that the cost of weddings can easily spiral out of control; the designer wedding dress, elaborate bouquet and the lavish after party means that many couples are feeling the pinch and need wedding debt advice after they have splashed out on their one special day.

According to recent research by You & Your Wedding magazine, the need for wedding debt advice may become more common as an average British couple  spends around £20,273 on their wedding, complete with a luxury honeymoon getaway and a no-expense spared reception. The average wedding cost was just over £18,750 in 2006, which represents an 8% increase.

Elaborate weddings are nothing new, even Roman emperors would hold week-long wedding celebrations, but these images are no longer ideals that are to be swooned over in glossy magazines, instead they are visuals that many are willing to emulate – complete with the hefty price tag. The average bride can expect to spend £1,927 including costs of wedding dress, veil and shoes. On top of this, the bride will spend an average of £109 on a going away outfit and £243 on new clothes for the honeymoon.

The WAG wedding of the summer between Wayne Rooney and Colleen McLoughlin is predicted to tot-up to the grand sum of around £5 million. Colette Harris, editor of You and Your Wedding magazine, explains:”There’s this sense that you have to have this enormous celebration with loads of guests and everything has to be blingy and that isn’t the case.”

5 Tips to Keep Your Wedding Costs Low

One Advice understand that although your wedding is bound to be the happiest day of your life, you don’t want to be paying for it for years to come. Debt Management is an important part of keeping to a sensible wedding budget. Now supposing that the typical bride and groom do not have a magazine photo deal to fall back on, here are some top tips about how to keep your wedding debt to a minimum:

1: Location, location, location: Think about holding the celebrations in a local church or registry office, rather than somewhere exotic. Or if you have always fancied a beach wedding, then think about combining it with your honeymoon so that doesn’t become an extra expense.

2: For Richer, Not Poorer: Taking out credit cards or loans to pay for your wedding just means that you are taking out debt! It is advisable to save up for your wedding in advance and have an ’emergency fund’ so that you can cater for any unexpected costs. In fact, a survery by Norwich Union shows that 1 in 5 single women are already saving for their wedding day!

3: Guest List: Try and keep the guest list to a minimum and don’t fall into the trap of inviting your great-auntie-twice-removed, whom you haven’t seen since you were three! A small guest list will keep your costs down and will make it a more intimate event.

4: Your Wedding List: Many high-street stores now offer a wedding list service. Although this will not save you any money on the day, it will save you from having 10 identical coffeemakers! If you already live with your partner then chances are that you do not need anything for your home, so perhaps include a witty poem with the invite politely asking for honeymoon donations or gift vouchers so you can pick what you buy.

5: Discover the talents of friends and family: Is your friend a great photographer, hairdresser or brilliant at making cakes? Then ask them to help out at your wedding. Not only will they perhaps lower their costs or do it for free, it is likely that they will be more than honoured to have been asked and will be guaranteed to give your day a personal touch.

Got any tips on how to keep your wedding day debt free? Please add your wedding debt advice comments below.