Checklist for an easy-breezy wedding day

Remember, if things do go haywire, make the most of it and see the humour in it.

24 September 2018 | Business

Leandrea Louw

Your partner popped the question and you’re engaged!

The excitement fades as you realise the hefty task of planning a wedding is lying ahead of you. No worries, here’s a short checklist to make sure you plan your day with confidence. Recommendations are that you set a wedding date 12 months in advance, but then again, that’s not always possible. People have planned weddings in two weeks, even in just a few days.

Set a date

Set a fixed date, or even three possible dates, making you more flexible in case anything 'pops up'.

Money, money, money

Work out your budget and determine how much you have or are willing to spend, based on your families’ contributions and your own. Too many couples find themselves trapped in debt after their wedding. Set up a budget and stick to it.

Pick your wedding party

As soon as you’re engaged, your best friend will wonder if she’s going to be your maid of honour or best man. Choose your maid of honour, best man, flower girl(s) and ring bearer.

Start with your guest list

This one is always tricky, especially if one or both sets of parents are involved in the planning or contributing financially to the wedding. Make sure to be realistic about the number of guests. You can’t invite 200 people if your budget only allows 100 people. Split the guest list three ways if a parent or parents are involved. If you have your provisional list and its beyond your budget make cutting rules. It’s your day, you have the right to choose who you invite.

Start scouting for wedding venues

Decide on whether or not you will have separate locations for the ceremony and the reception afterwards. Be mindful of the time moving between the two venues. Venues usually require a 50% deposit beforehand. Keep all receipts and check in regularly if everything is set for your big day.

Book your officiant

This can be your pastor at the local church, or magistrate. Churches usually require that you attend marriage counselling classes beforehand.


If you have your heart set on a certain photographer, or musician, book them as soon as you can. Try finding out various prices from florists for your bouquet and flowers for your bridesmaids and flower girls.

Purchase your dress

Make dress hunting fun. Book an appointment at your local wedding dress shop, take along your bridesmaids and have a ball while trying on wedding dresses. Decide if the bridesmaids and flower girl dresses will be custom made.

Start planning your honeymoon

If you’ll be travelling out of the country, make sure your passports are up to date, and make sure to schedule doctor’s appointments for any shots you may need.

Send out wedding invitations

Nowadays couples tend to opt for more electronic invites, like making a video with photos and a special song, or just a photo invite, sending it via email or WhatsApp. It’s cost effective. Otherwise, find someone locally to design and print your invites and send it to your guests at least three months beforehand.

Choose your menu

After deciding on a caterer, choose your menu. Decide if you’d like to have a variety of foods to choose from. Select and order your wedding cake as well.

Schedule hair and make-up artists

Start scouting for hair and make-up artists and set up a few appointments beforehand for hair and make-up trials.

There are numerous wedding applications on iStore and Google Play for you to download to make your day run as smooth as possible.

Remember, if things do go haywire, make the most of it and see the humour in it.

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