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GreyMatter

Seeking advice on wedding costs and current trends

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@GreyMatter Salam Alaikum,

Aight guys, real talk, get in here and advise please.

I want to see logic in wedding expenses. Now every single thing in my life that I do, I always research lots before hand and commit to it when I see rationale and logic behind it. And for the love of God, I can't justify wedding costs. I am Pakistani if its relevant and my future to be in-laws are kinda elite and would like a good wedding. Good wedding is pretty $$$.

Wedding is where I live here in Canada.

 

Now profile time, when it comes to personal finance, I am responsible. I always pay my bills on time, I never incur interest on credit cards at all, and (try to) max my my RSP (retirement fund) and TFSA (tax-free planning) in investments. I work for financial markets/investments for a big bank, so I know all about the financial markets, trends and all the stock stuff. (I have asked all investment questions in personal meetings with Maulanas, so lets not diverge on the legality of it here) 

So I know finance. Now I spend a lot of money on leisure, sporting events, food, limited edition clothes, hype celebrity sneakers, I like fashion for some crazy reason and ship limited editions from all over the world - now I do save decent amounts. So I do spend on leisure, my leisure!

Kinda living the good life within my financial limits, but living MY life, not for anyone.

Also the millennial question, we are getting priced out from owning property in a major metropolitan city, student debts, times are hard compared to those our under 30 age in 70s, 80s, mid-90s .. etc, economically speaking. 

So while I put this out here, I can't justify spending on weddings.

What's an event? $15-20k? or more? 

Like c'mon man, I cannot feed well-to-do family friends/cousins, do decor on the hall, give gifts to family and stuff when I am a relatively a new graduate in a decent working job. Mashallah my work and investments are doing decent, but I can't upfront all this money on a wedding, it doesn't benefit me, it benefits guests who I just meet once a year tops. Who cares about them?

 

I rather buy a fun-driving car for that money, or down-payment some condo (still a stretch) for my long-term benefit than spend 15-20k on ONE NIGHT!

 

Q1) How much was your wedding out of your or your parents pocket? What is considered or below-averge a normal wedding? Please tell me what the costs are?

Q2) People will talk, who cares, not me, I would rather have a decent bank account than to spend that no guests, as you know, today's economical climate doesn't justify spending 20k for anyone under 30 unless someone's parents are ballers. So tell me, is my rationale correct, what should i do?

Any advice is good advice.

 

 

Edited by GreyMatter

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$15k is even very normal cost here in PK. but ain't you gonna get cash and other gifts. Not talking about dowry but 'salami' thing inviting more people can help in this case. Since it won't increase overall costs. 

500 guests x $100 = $50,000 - $20,000 = $30,000 net profit. 

At least it should be break even isn't 

Edited by ErikCartman

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According to the Pakistani norms its mandatory to give cash gifts. Called 'salami'. In most cases the min. Recovers the cost for banquet. Just last week to my employee's sister wedding I gave him $250 but not everyone is so generous. Hehe. But you get the point the closer relative could give you as much as $1000 or even more. 

It's on per invitation basis so try to invite couple and skip the ones with large army of kids ;) 

Edited by ErikCartman

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Guest silasun

Rent a half decent hall, get some decent food, get a sound system and play some nasheeds and get a friend to recite Qur'an. The idiots will hate you forever.

It's a win-win-win.

1. The idiots thought you were going to be like them and out-idiot your third cousin by spending to prove how rich you are. They will thus bring tonnes in monetary gifts and you will come out financially superior to before your wedding.

2. You have a nice, halal wedding and get it off to a good start.

3. The idiots hate you forever. No more fools in your life.

Happy days.

Edited by silasun

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I don't think you will get so much money in salami. Your close relatives (chacha, taya, Khala, mamoon) are supposed to give you gold sets or other expensive gifts. If you invite your rich relatives, they will closely look at organization. I got special attention from my rich relatives after I got married. If you get attention, and you are able to prolong this friendship, you may get expensive gifts ($5000 -$10000) in future. I have seen it happening and that's the reason people spend so much on weddings. 

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King's always blunt....BE A MAN JACKIE CHAN lol. If i'm ever in a huge dilemma, KING, your the man i'll be looking for!

GreyMatter recently my younger brother got married in the UK. Three wedding programs in and around London! People usually say 'oh man, that cost me an arm and a leg', we lost both arms and both legs. We were left with a wobbly head sitting on a motionless trunk. A year on, there is potential for the recovery of one arm. As for the other 3 limbs, no sightings yet. 

Now if I could turn back time - it would be different.

I believe you are absolutely correct to consider your financial well-being both prior and after. Consult with your would be in-laws and discuss your concerns. If the bride desires a tooled up wedding with all things blazing, you'll have to consider that too and maybe compromise on certain areas but overall be practical and honest. 

As for the cost - have you guys determined the number of guests? That would be an ideal starting point to consider venue size and per head catering. We got a package through our caterers incl. hall and basic decor averaging around £45-£50 per head discounted down to £40. Everything was just about above average which was good enough. Additional exp: Stage set up, walk way, more decor, car rentals, additional lighting and all the other usual suspects. We did leave some planning at the last minute (BIG MISTAKE - plan early and stay away from ninja costs, they pile up real fast. A lesson learned the hard way).

BTW this salami business -  The guy above who profited from the exchange must be well appreciated (unlike my brother). We returned around 35% of the actual cost which was better than expected. It would have been more had we chosen venue on the outskirts of London. Next time we plan a wedding, brother ErikCartman's guest list will be requested! 

 

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@saas my financial working was based off the elite family that the OP referred to. There are tons of freeloaders in a desi wedding too jajaja but I was suspecting everyone was going to arrive in a personal jet or limo at his wedding hehe. 

On a serious note, I guess it should easily recover at least banquet costs? 

Edited by ErikCartman

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11 hours ago, GreyMatter said:

@GreyMatter Salam Alaikum,

Aight guys, real talk, get in here and advise please.

I want to see logic in wedding expenses. Now every single thing in my life that I do, I always research lots before hand and commit to it when I see rationale and logic behind it. And for the love of God, I can't justify wedding costs. I am Pakistani if its relevant and my future to be in-laws are kinda elite and would like a good wedding. Good wedding is pretty $$$.

Wedding is where I live here in Canada.

 

... So I do spend on leisure, my leisure!

Kinda living the good life within my financial limits, but living MY life, not for anyone...

 So tell me, is my rationale correct, what should i do?

Any advice is good advice.

 

 

There are two sure ways to go broke in Life: buy a horse or get a wife.

There are two sure ways to lose your Life:  suicide and marr-age.

 

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9 hours ago, ErikCartman said:

@saas my financial working was based off the elite family that the OP referred to. There are tons of freeloaders in a desi wedding too jajaja but I was suspecting everyone was going to arrive in a personal jet or limo at his wedding hehe. 

On a serious note, I guess it should easily recover at least banquet costs? 

Well my side of the family has barely any elite people in it, the future in-laws to be are elite with elite 'top of the line' families and friends.

 

Like 'dessert shipped from Paris to Toronto for a wedding' elite among other interesting things. And I on the other hand am better off just serving cookies for mine :blush:

I can't justify spending for one night yo, but everyone does at least 15-25k .. why? I don't get it. 

Edited by GreyMatter

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1 hour ago, GreyMatter said:

Well my side of the family has barely any elite people in it, the future in-laws to be are elite with elite 'top of the line' families and friends.

 

Like 'dessert shipped from Paris to Toronto for a wedding' elite among other interesting things. And I on the other hand am better off just serving cookies for mine :blush:

I can't justify spending for one night yo, but everyone does at least 15-25k .. why? I don't get it. 

Bruv! Weddings are crazy in India and Pakistan. $15k is very low price even for the middle class here. It's stupid but desi weddings are expensive. But hey I guess you could get at least 50% back. And then it's not that wrong. Remember you only get to married once. Hehe. 

Weddings actually tend to be largest show of one's status in India and Pakistan therefore price tag is so high. 

Edited by ErikCartman

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50 minutes ago, Pearl178 said:

If the woman's family insist on having a big wedding, shouldn't they pay for the costs? 

Yes they said they will, but the valima+giving gifts to girl's family easily crosses $15k CAD (And CAD is like ~70% of U.S dollar nowdays in perspective, lol) 

 

Not only is the wedding cost crazy, then the art of giving gifts to multiple people adds up real quick too. 

Like I am marrying the girl, not her favorite family members that I also must include in giving gifts.

 

Sorry this might be basic questions but I sometimes have a hard time wrapping my head around certain things.

 

 

Edited by GreyMatter

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26 minutes ago, ErikCartman said:

Weddings actually tend to be largest show of one's status symbol in India and Pakistan therefore price tag is so high. 

Afghanistan and Iran also have big expensive weddings. 

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Just now, hameedeh said:

Afghanistan and Iran also have big expensive weddings. 

Oh God, my Chinese and Korean co-workers surpass Pakistani weddings with ease too. Their dowry and mehr is multiple times the standard desi figure too.

 

Guess I want to be a white redneck from Alabama/Mississippi area now, will they accept me as their own? :O 

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Just now, hameedeh said:

Afghanistan and Iran also have big expensive weddings. 

oh wow. I am totally alien to neighboring Iran's culture, I have seen few documentaries, and I just loved it than Pakistan. It was bit modern than Pakistan is. But never knew they would spend insanely on weddings too. 

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