Savings, Savings, Savings!
EPMPOA Memorial Hall has been around 40 years and we have seen it all! WE get it, planning special occasions are expensive. You can cut cost without cutting the guest list. We’ve enlisted some of the wedding and quincenera industry’s top professionals in El Paso area to show you how to cut the cost- without sacrificing style. Through years of personal experience, here are some AMAZING ways to save on your big day!
Here is an exciting creative way to save !
Tip 1: Any day but Saturday!
The date has a dramatic impact on your budget. Obviously, people are usually free on Saturdays but too many people want your date, as well. By booking during the event on a Friday, Sunday or even a Wednesday can save you thousands of dollars.
Tip 2: Find a venue that doesn’t require you to use their vendors!
The best saving tip by far. Many venues will offer “packages” that include photographers, catering, DJ, and bartender’s and can get costly. Finding a venue that lets you bring in your own caterer and photographer can potentially save you a few hundred dollars. Luckily, EPMPOA Memorial DOES NOT REQUIRE you to use their vendors, bring who you like, it’s your big day!
Tip 3: Hold the ceremony and reception at the same place.
If at all possible, try to have a two-in-one! This reduces travel cost -since most photographers charge by the hour, and reduces limo cost. Your guests can enjoy cocktail hair/reception hour immediately after the ceremony while you take pictures.
Tip 4: Plan your event right at the end of peak season!
Planning your special occasion after/before in season can mean a couple thousand back in your budget. Most venues and vendors charge higher prices when supply and demand goes up. Planning an off-season event can cause a cheaper price. Wedding season in El Paso, Texas is around spring time. Usually the months February-May because El Paso heat is unbearable the summers (June-August) are usually slower than in the spring. Peak season varies by climate.
Tip 5: Take your Time…
Having a 2 year extended planning period means you can book super early and prices won’t go up. You can save a lot of money on the save the dates and invitations by waiting for deals to be emailed to you. Along with two years of tax returns. Planning major events means research. LOTS AND LOTS of research. When you take your time you are able to find a price that fits your budget. Giving yourself time to save, and grow your budget.
Center Piece Savings
Tip 6: Make Centerpieces from Dollar Store items
Dollar tree has endless choice of crafts; they have glass bowls, flower petals, tree branches, Styrofoam, tea light candles. Making a centerpiece can be as simple as filling a glass bowl with water, a tea light candle and a few flower petals. A themed event such as a masquerade theme, can also be found at $ retail stores such as Jewelry Box where each mask costs $1!
Tip 7: Shop at Outlets and discounted dress shops
Based on the time of day and season you can get your wedding/quince dress at half the price along with items for a center piece. Stay away from Crafts stores they tend to not only charge more but the outlets probably have the same thing but $3 less!
Tip 8: Décor, Balloons vs Flowers
Balloons are cheaper and just as colorful! Tie balloons onto the back of chairs. Eloquent looks through natural shades of balloons covered with vail or create a balloon bouquet to the center pieces and at the end of the night, make a wish and release the balloons! It’s a unique perfect opportunity for photos opt!
Tip 9: Flower Selections, in season
If balloons are a “Heck No, I need flowers!” Consider flowers in season at the time of your event will be cost effective. Calla Lilies- a flower made famous in Mexican paintings ARE ALWAYS IN SEASON. Not only are they affordable but they are colorful.
Tip 10: Inexpensive Picture Frames
Make copies of your favorite photos but pictures frames from your local dollar stores that can be altered to the color of the event through painting. Place them in the middle of each table. This center piece idea is perfect for graduations, retirements, weddings and Quince because each photo frame is an opportunity to show different stages and years of your life/career.
Tip 11: Crafts Stores Shortcuts, Hobby Lobby and Michaels, JoAnn Fabrics
Typically these stores can get expensive because of the specific or customized items. But let’s be honest, sometimes you need the quality or the inventory, so make sure to use their 40%-50% off coupons. Coupons can be found online, in- store, newspaper, or through mobile phone apps. Typically, Michael’s coupons are for one item only so make sure to be accompanied by friend or relative to hand them some cash so each person can use the coupon to get the discount.
Tip 12: Invite your relatives to help make your favors!
Tias, tios, siblings, in-laws are just as excited for your days as you are. So, let them help! Having a decorating party is not only a bonus family bonding time, but also a chance to knock out all of the decorating in half the time!
Tip 12: Multiple Cakes instead of one big one!
We have seen multiple events that do this and are very successful. Order a small well-decorated cake for each table, including hidden silverware, 8 plates, and an inexpensive $1 cake cutter. The small cakes can be used as part of the centerpiece, a small note, “Please refrain from eating the cake till toast” can be a savings of over $200. Plus there is no tasks or worries on the cake distribution!
Tip 13: Cupcakes
Cupcakes are even more affordable than 30 small cakes. Some grocery stores bakeries have better prices than traditional bakeries and are just as delicious. Cupcakes for your guests and a small cake for the toast/cake cutting to save on your special occasion.
Tip 14: FAKE the CAKE
Cakes can easily cost $300-$800 so, fake it. Have a baker make a fake cardboard and decorated cake that looks real. Then, have a basic sheet cake in the back and have the hostess cut and serve to your guests.
Tip 15: Don’t feel like you HAVE to have a cake!
Just because it’s what everyone does doesn’t mean it’s required. It’s your party, you do what you want. Skip the cake and replace it with a milk and cookie bar, smore’s bar, fruit and chocolate fountain.
Tip 16: Pies!
Go to a bakery and buy some mini pies for each guest! To score on even bigger savings, ask around for anyone who makes pies out of their house instead of a designated bakery!
Tip 17: Utilize the grocery store!
Order the cake and flowers from your local grocery store. You can have beautiful flowers and cake for ½ the cost.
Dress, Hair, and Makeup Savings
Tip 18: Shop for white dress/Quince dress that aren’t specifically wedding gowns or Quince Gowns
There are many options where you can find some dresses. A few ideas is online, or on a prom site. Macy’s, has beautiful white gowns that can be altered to look like a wedding gown. You can also shop for a bridesmaid dress and have a seamstress turn it into a wedding gown or a Quince dress.
Tip 19: Save at a Show
Shop during an expo/trade show they are always offering huge sales and save anywhere from $150-$500 less for a quince or wedding dress. Sometimes they even have dress packages half off, so you can also get a complimentary customization and get a free veil or size adjustment.
Tip 20: Browse Social Media
Follow your local bridal salons and quince salons to catch promotions. Majority of shops will throw in 10%-30% off depending on what dress they are trying to sell.
Tip 21: Go to Juarez
We all know if we want to save we go to Juarez.
Tip 22: Take a stroll Downtown
If you don’t have time to stop in Juarez go downtown. Downtown has so many discounted dress shops. Any of those shops will save you money.
Tip 23: DIY Hair and Makeup
DIY: Your hair and makeup of course! Skip the salon and have a family friend do your hair and makeup! Cosmetology students always need practice; hire them to style your hair for half the price of getting it done at a salon.
Tip 24: Sephora is your new BFF
Don’t forget about your beauty stores. Sephora will give you a free makeover if you spend $50 or more that means you can buy the eyelashes they use, the lipstick they used on you, and boom! You only spent $50 and got a new lipstick!
Tip 25: ORDER IN BULK
Stop going back and forth and order in bulk. Don’t order a few invitations later it will cost more so just order a little more than what you think you’ll need.
Tip 26: Print Invitations at Home
Printing your invitations at home can save you money! When your print your invitations at home you can design your invite on your computer and print them on a blank invite and ta-da! Your invites are done and $200 back in your pocket.
Tip 27: Go Postal
Replace your RSVP card with a RSVP postcard to cut costs on both printing and postage. It’s not only saving you money but it’s also something that your guests have never seen!
Tip 28: Make your guest happy
On your RSVP card leave a blank that says, “Request your favorite Song”. On the day of your event your guest will get excited when their song comes on !
Tip 29: Create a site
Save over $800 by having a website directing guests to your wedding site or quince site that has all the information they need! The website can have everything from your invitations, to rehearsal dinner and the bridal shower. Along with transportation and accommodations info! Wix is a free website creator that can do this for you.
Tip 30: Second Shooter
Instead of hiring a photographer to follow you from the 8am-1am and costing you $2,000. Hire a second shooter for the getting-ready shots and ceremony and only pay half price. This way during the ceremony they don’t miss a single moment. *Extra Tip* ask the photographer if their will be a 2nd photographer during the ceremony based on the package you purchased.
Tip 31: All day photos?
Say No, book your photographer for only 6-8 hours and they will still capture all the moments but at half price.
Tip 32: Pass the photos
Choose a less-expensive package that doesn’t include hard copy and send them to family and friends. You can always buy them later !
Tip 33: Save with students
This tip is more a general than it is photography but, Hire graduate- student photographers or musicians to play at your event. Since they are starting out they are guaranteed to cost less than someone who’s been in the music/photography world awhile.
Tip 34: Think beyond chicken and fish
Think outside the box. Why not rent a food truck for a few hours or hire someone to roast a hog and serve pulled pork.
Tip 35: Serve homemade and traditional food
Most hall vendors will serve the food for you. Grab some help and make food a few days before and transport the day of your event.
Tip 36: Shed a few $$$ with kid costs
If you are expecting children, ask your caterers if children's meals are discounted. Caters will usually cut the cost in half or offer a separate menu with less expensive catering pricing.
Tip 37: Make a signature drink !
Buy a few bottle of hard liquor and "create" a signature drink like "The Oliver Margarita" which includes tequila, triple sec and sweet and sour mix!
Tip 38: Don't offer endless alcohol options.
Buy a few kegs from a local brewery and one signature cocktail for the night. Fun Fact: EPMPOA Hall doesn't charge an alcohol fee!
Tip 39: Renew, Reuse Recycle
Re purpose flowers! Use ceremony decor on the bar or center pieces. You can also use bridesmaids' bouquets for the cake table !
Tip 40: Go Green(ery)
DO NOT UNDERESTIMATE THE BEAUTY OF FOLIAGE! Foliage adds size and texture to arrangements and is inexpensive!
Tip 41:Think Budget- Friendly
Try using single stem flowers, like tulips or roses in slim bud holders. You can arrange them in groups of 20 or 30 at varied heights for a stylish effect!
Tip 42: Light up the room
Fill the room with candles for an intimate factor and cut flower costs.
Tip 43: Axe the Glass
Instead of using glass vases switch the glass for plastic. It's cheaper, lighter and makes for easy travel.
Tip 44: Consider DIY
If you got the time and help consider buying your flower from local floral wholesales and make your own bouquets and decorations.
Tip 45: Cut the flowers
Skip the flowers all together. No one will miss them.
Remember, it's your quince, wedding, retirement party so have fun! EPMPOA Memorial Hall has been around 40 years and and hope our experiences help you get the most out of your special event while saving the most money. Thanks to the industry’s top professionals in El Paso area we have 45 different ways to save money! Thank you & Good luck!