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Dave Says: How to Have a Wedding Without Debt

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Dear Dave,

I’m getting married soon, and my fiancée and I together have saved about $9,000 for our wedding. Right now, we’re doing really well on our budgets and almost always have money left over each month. Should we use the extra money to continue paying down our debt, or is it okay to use it for a few wedding incidentals?

Nathan 

Dear Nathan,

I love the idea of having a nice, reasonable wedding paid for with cash. Some people look at weddings as an excuse to go nuts, but you guys sound like you have a good plan in mind. 

The average cost of a wedding in America right now is around $30,000. Even if the extras you mentioned run $5,000 to $6,000, you’re still talking about half that amount. So, let’s look at it this way. Basically, you’re asking me if it’s okay to put your debt snowball on hold temporarily in order to modestly enhance your already reasonable wedding plans. My answer is yes!

Now, if you’d told me you wanted to drop $50,000 on the wedding instead of getting out of debt, I’d think you were crazy. It doesn’t sound like you two are going to abuse the situation, though. I think you’re both being very wise. 

God bless, and I hope you have long and happy lives together!

—Dave

* Dave Ramsey is America’s trusted voice on money and business. He has authored five New York Times best-selling books: Financial Peace, More Than Enough, The Total Money Makeover, EntreLeadership and Smart Money Smart Kids. The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 8 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations. Follow Dave on Twitter at @DaveRamsey and on the web at daveramsey.com.

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