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Creating A Realistic Nigerian Wedding Budget For 2022: All You Need To Know


Congratulations to all the amazing couples getting married this year!!!

I have been getting a lot of messages from newly engaged couples, asking to know how much they should budget for a wedding of 300, 500 or even 1000 guests wedding.

And everytime I try to explain to them why I may not be able to give an outright budget estimate and this is because there are just so many factors to consider.

More so, I wouldn’t want to give a wrong estimate, only for them to have their hopes dashed later.

This article is aimed at helping newly engaged couples planning to get married in Nigeria, understand how to create a realistic Nigerian Wedding budget.

The moment you get engaged and start thinking about the wedding preparation, there are some series of important steps before making your first Wedding budget plan, purchase or booking any vendors for your special day.

I will start by listing out some general things you should know before creating a Nigerian Wedding budget.

1. Nigeria’s economy is very unstable and the prices of items fluctuates almost on a weekly basis and this cuts across every business sector in the country.

So what this means is that, you may get a quote for decor at N500,000 (Naira) this week and the following week, you may be charged an extra of N200,000 with the same deliverables (a lot of factors can contribute to this actually)

2. Set aside a percentage of your wedding budget for Miscellaneous expenses. You will thank me later for this.

Note: The higher your wedding budget, the higher your Miscellaneous fee will be.

3. Don’t be deceived o! Weddings in Nigeria cost a lot of money and these prices seems to have skyrocketed post Covid. Some quotes you may get can send you back to your village… so be prepared.

4. Most vendors will charge a percentage for service fee + logistics fee + VAT, which is separate from the main fee for a service. So be sure to ask for hidden costs or charges if you do not see these 3 items on the quotation sent to you.

5. Ensure that you are knowledgeable about the services you are making enquiries of. For example, know what you want and what are entitled to for the stipulated price, complementary services that comes with the package etc…

It is also better for you to give clear and complete details on your expectations. Creating a visual moodboard for your decorator may be a preferable option to listing it out.

This is to avoid being given higher charges the moment you keep adding details after an agreement has been reached. You would also be paying a whole lot more if you do this.

6. Do not assume anything at all, do NOT attach imaginary prices to a vendor’s service. Also ask questions if you do not understand any aspects of the quotation/package sent to you…

7. My abroad people, please if you have a friend or family member that you trust, engage their services to help you make enquiries from Nigerian vendors.

This is because some Nigerian vendors have the habit of increasing their prices when they see that you are from ‘the abroad’.

8. To create a realistic Nigerian Wedding budget, you have to have an idea of how much things cost in the area, state or the location you intend to get married.

For instance, you don’t want to create and start working with a wedding budget, only to find out that photography packages start at N250,000 in your area when you only budgeted N150,000 for that.

More so, wedding vendors charge differently in different states. An Abuja vendor may be more expensive than an Ibadan or Lagos vendor.

9. There are different grades/levels of vendors, don’t expect all Makeup Artists or caterers to charge the same. Know what your pocket can carry and look for vendors within your price range.

10. Bringing any vendor from out-of-state (that is, bring the vendor from another state to the state you intend to get married in), will eat deep into your wedding budget.

11. Hire a Wedding Planner if your budget can accommodate it. It will save you from making costly mistakes. You will also be saving money, time and many other benefits.

12. The best budgets are just there to guide you, not make you feel guilty or stressed…they’re designed to keep you from losing control and over spending.

13. Number of guests doesn’t really matter anymore. It seems like since post covid, everything has gone up regardless of the number of guests you are catering to or planning for. Don’t be surprised if your wedding decor costs millions for a 150-guest wedding (some other factors may or may not be considered).

Factors to consider when creating the Nigerian wedding budget.

The points I listed here, are the reasons why I cannot give you an estimate of what your wedding will cost when you make enquiries about this in my DM.

1. Your actual budget

How much money you have for the wedding. Anybody can give you a wedding budget, but only you know how much you actually have for the wedding.

Financial conversations can be hard for a couple planning their wedding, but it is a necessary conversation to have. Be honest about how much you both can contribute to the wedding without help from anyone… as this will go a long way in helping you make better judgement as the planning proceeds.

Wedding Tip: My number 1 advice will be to meet with a wedding professional (book a consultation session), to go over the details of your dream wedding.

A professional may not be able to give you a wedding budget summary or estimate but she definitely be able to give you the much needed insight you need and factors to consider, to help you come up with a more realistic wedding budget.

This way, you can come up with an estimate yourself.

2. How much things cost in your location.

Do plenty of research, invest your time in meeting with all kinds of experts, getting printed price lists, and really knowing the ballparks of what everything costs. Then sit down and look at your available funds to figure out what kind of wedding you can have.

3. Contribution from parents and relatives.

To see if they will be willing and able to help pay for some of the wedding expenses or the whole wedding.

Wedding Tip: Don’t naturally expect that your parents will foot your wedding bills, even though by tradition, that’s how it’s supposed to be but these days, not every parent can take on the full Wedding expenses. While some may be able to pay for the full Wedding, some may only offer to pay for a few vendors or the honeymoon, while some may not be financially buoyant to pay for anything.

4. What is important to you

What wedding elements are important to you and your partner? It could be the catering, entertainment, makeup, decoration, outfits, photography etc… by doing this, you will be able to decide on the aspects of the wedding that you are willing to splurge on.

Wedding Tip: It may take a few steps and some extra time, but it’s so worth it to create a good, flexible budget that keeps you in check.

5. Client’s vendor preference

Like I mentioned earlier, there are different grades of vendors. For example, if the budget for your wedding makeup is N150,000 but you prefer the works of another makeup artist that charges N400,000… that is your preference and your planner can only try to convince you otherwise, but at the the of the day, it is your personal choice to make.

Your vendor preference can either make your wedding budget expensive or you may be right on track. The choice is yours really.

Related: Nigerian Wedding Planners: How much they charge

6. Location

The location where your wedding will be taking place, can determine whether your wedding budget will skyrocket or not.

You can get a variety of vendor options in some states in Nigeria more than others.

So you may be limited with vendor options if your wedding is taking place in Ondo for instance.

I always advise my clients to consider the vendors in their location first, before considering out-of-state vendors.

Bringing an out of state vendor to your location will cost you more in terms of logistics, accommodation and additional fees for inconvenience etc

7. Client’s Expectations:

Nigerian vendors charge according to your taste and expectations. I always say that you cannot have champagne on a zobo budget. (Zobo is a Nigerian locally made drink from dried hibiscus flowers). If you have high expectations (which is not a bad thing), just be ready to pay for it.

These are the issues

8. Nigerian Wedding Seasons

We have the peak period for weddings and also the dry season and by dry, I mean the season when there are not many weddings happening.

Wedding Tip: The Ember months (Setemper to December) are very peak periods for weddings in Nigeria, and vendors charges are quite high during this period. Meanwhile, a June wedding may not cost as much as a December wedding…

9. Number of Event days

A two day wedding in Nigeria will definitely cost more than a one day wedding.

10. Wedding Planning timeline

The ideal time to start planning a wedding in Nigeria is between six to 12 months. But many Nigerians don’t start planning their wedding early enough and this may cause their wedding budget to skyrocket more than necessary.

If you are having a December wedding and you start planning in November, your wedding budget will be very high.

11. Variety

Variety is spice of life they say, but having a variety of vendor services and options for different things at your wedding can significantly increase your wedding budget.

12. After-Party

After party is the real party at a Nigerian Wedding and the expenses for an After-party can eat significantly into the wedding budget. From the After party props, chops, drinks, hypeman, lighting etc and all the paparazzi that comes with having an after-party… o por! (It is plenty), you can either scrap it or go all out. You decide!

13. Number of Guests

These days, I don’t even know if this is a criteria anymore with Nigerian weddings and vendors, as everything wedding is just expensive in Nigeria at the moment.

The only thing I can say is that, you MAY be able to save some money if you have a small guestlist. But it also all depends on one or two factors…

For instance, if you were going to pay your caterer N2,500 per guest, for a 500 guestlist wedding, but then decided to reduce your guestlist to 300 and then went for a more expensive food package of N4,500 per plate… by the time you do the calculations, you may not really be saving anything by reducing your guestslist to 300. Do you get my point?

Related: Catering At A Nigerian Wedding: All You Need To Know

How to stick to a Nigerian Wedding Budget.

– Pray, because wedding planning is like a spirit. The spirit of spending will just descend on you from nowhere and everybody is offering you one thing or the other to buy or use.

– Try to cut your coat according to your material and not your size. You may be a size 10 but you only have material for a size 8. You get me?

– Be willing to compromise and be open to other vendor options. Don’t be bent on using a vendor that you clearly cannot afford. There are always other vendors, you just have to do your research.

– Also understand that your wedding budget may not be able to get you everything that you may want for your big day and that is alright too.

– Leverage on relationships. If you have a friend who is good at her job, you can ask for a friend’s discount.

– Hire a planner. The duties of a planner cannot be over-emphasized. At La’ Heiress, we would ensure that you don’t over-do it with the spending.

– Not every person in your life should be allowed to tell you what you should do at your wedding… A few advice here and there from friends but that should be it. Don’t allow them dictate to you on what you should do and have at your wedding.

– Stay focused. Don’t get carried away by all the feferity on social media.

– Be realistic with your expectations.

– Always allocate a percentage of your wedding budget to Miscellaneous. Miscellaneous expenses always come up. 10% of the entire wedding budget should be allocated to miscellaneous expenses

You Know I Love You
X.O.X.O Your Integrity Planner
Olamide~ The Heiress
Head Planner,
La’ Heiress Weddings

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