La' Heiress Blog


Creating A Realistic Nigerian Wedding Budget For 2023: All You Need To Know


Many congratulations to all the wonderful couples getting married this year!

I have received numerous messages from recently engaged couples inquiring about the budget required for a wedding with 300, 500, or even 1000 guests.

Each time I try to explain to them that it can be difficult to provide an exact budget estimate as there are several factors to consider.

Additionally, I do not want to give an incorrect estimate and disappoint them later.

This article is aimed at assisting recently engaged couples in Nigeria plan a realistic Nigerian Wedding budget.

When you become engaged and start planning your wedding, there are certain crucial steps to take before creating your first wedding budget, making any purchases, or booking vendors for your big day.

Before creating a Nigerian Wedding budget, there are a few key things to be aware of.

First, Nigeria’s economy is quite unstable and prices can fluctuate frequently, affecting all business sectors in the country.

This means that you may receive a quote for decor at N500,000 (Naira) one week, and the next week, you may be charged an additional N200,000 for the same items or services. There can be several reasons for this.

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. Beware, weddings in Nigeria can be quite costly, and these prices have risen significantly since the outbreak of Covid. Some quotes you may receive can be quite high, so be prepared for this.

4. Many vendors will include additional charges such as a service fees, logistics fees, and VAT, separate from the main cost of the service. Be sure to inquire about any hidden costs or charges if they are not explicitly listed on the quotation provided to you.

5. It’s important to be informed about the services you are inquiring about. Be clear on what you want and what is included in the quoted price, as well as any complementary services that come with the package.

Giving clear and comprehensive information on your expectations is also recommended. For example, creating a visual mood board for your decorator can be a more effective way of communicating your preferences than listing them out.

This will prevent unexpected additional charges from being added after an agreement has been made, and also avoid incurring additional costs.

6. It is important to not make assumptions and to avoid assigning fictitious prices to a vendor’s service. If you have any questions or do not understand any part of the quotation or package provided, be sure to ask for clarification.

7. My abroad people, If you have a friend or family member living in Nigeria whom you trust, it may be beneficial to enlist their help in making inquiries to Nigerian vendors. Some vendors may have the tendency to increase their prices when they learn that a client is based overseas.

8. To plan a realistic Nigerian Wedding budget, it’s important to have a general understanding of the cost of goods and services in the location where you plan to get married.

For example, you don’t want to set and work with a wedding budget, only to later discover that photography packages start at N250,000 in your area, when you only allocated N150,000 for that in your budget.

Additionally, wedding vendors prices may vary from state to state. A vendor based in Abuja may charge more than one based in Ibadan or Lagos.

9. There are different levels of vendors, and prices may vary among them. Be mindful of your budget when looking for vendors and look for those that fit within your price range.

10. Hiring a vendor from outside the state where you plan to get married can significantly add to 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. The number of guests doesn’t have as much of an impact on costs as it used to. Since the outbreak of Covid, prices have risen across the board, regardless of the number of guests you are planning for. Don’t be surprised if your wedding decor costs a large amount, even for a wedding with a small guest list (other factors may also come into play).

Factors to consider when creating the Nigerian wedding budget.

The reasons listed here are why I am unable to provide a cost estimate for your wedding when you inquire about it in my direct messages.

1. Your actual budget

The amount of money you have available for your wedding is a critical factor. While anyone can provide a wedding budget, only you know how much you have to spend.

It can be difficult to have financial discussions while planning a wedding, but it’s important to have those conversations.

Be honest with each other about how much you can contribute to the wedding without outside help, as this will aid in making better decisions as the planning process continues.

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 detailed wedding budget estimate, if they are no5 handling your wedding planning, but they can provide the necessary information and factors to consider in order to develop a more realistic wedding budget.

This can allow you to come up with an estimate on your own.

2. How much things cost in your location.

Conduct thorough research, take the time to meet with various experts, gather printed cost lists, and become familiar with the general prices of all wedding-related items. With this information, you can then assess your available funds and determine what type of wedding you can afford.

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.

Related: 6 Must-Have Talks with Parents & In-Laws Before Planning Your Wedding

Wedding Tip: Traditionally, parents may be expected to pay for a wedding, but that may not always be the case these days. Some parents may be able to cover the full cost of the wedding, some may be able to pay for specific vendors or the honeymoon, while others may not be financially capable of contributing. It’s important not to assume that your parents will cover the full cost of your wedding.

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

As previously mentioned, there are different levels of vendors, and prices can vary accordingly.

For example, if your budget for wedding makeup is N150,000 but you prefer the services of another makeup artist who charges N400,000, that is your preference and your planner can only suggest alternatives, but ultimately, the decision is yours.

Your vendor choices can either greatly increase or stay within your wedding budget, it is ultimately your decision.

Related: Nigerian Wedding Planners: How much they charge

6. Location

The location of your wedding can greatly impact your wedding budget. Some states in Nigeria offer more vendor options than others, which can limit your choices if your wedding is taking place in a less populated area.

It’s best to consider local vendors first before looking into out-of-state options, as bringing in vendors from outside the area can increase expenses due to logistics, accommodation, and additional charges for inconvenience.

7. Client’s Expectations:

Nigerian vendors base their prices on your preferences and expectations. It is a common saying that you cannot have champagne as your expectations on a zobo budget [zobo is a inexpensive local drink in Nigeria]. If you have elevated expectations, be prepared to pay for it.

These are the issues

8. Nigerian Wedding Seasons

Weddings have peak and off-peak seasons, with the latter being the time of year when there are fewer weddings taking place.

Wedding Tip: The months from September to December, referred to as the Ember months, are considered peak seasons for weddings in Nigeria, with vendors charges generally being higher during this time. On the other hand, a wedding in June may cost less than one in December.

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 optimal time to begin planning a wedding in Nigeria is between six to 12 months in advance. However, many Nigerian couples do not start planning early enough, which can cause their wedding budget to increase unnecessarily.

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

The After party is a crucial part of a Nigerian wedding and the expenses associated with it can have a significant impact on the wedding budget. From props, food, drinks, a hypeman, lighting, and other expenses that come with having an after-party, it can add up quickly. You can either opt to not have one or go all out, the choice is yours.

13. Number of Guests

Nowadays, it’s uncertain if having a smaller guest list is a cost-saving measure in Nigerian weddings and with vendors, as everything related to weddings in Nigeria is quite expensive.

The only thing that can be said is that you may be able to save some money with a smaller guest list, but it depends on other factors.

For example, if you were originally planning to pay your caterer N2,500 per guest for a 500-guest wedding, and then decided to reduce your guest list to 300 and also upgrade to a more expensive food package of N4,500 per plate, you may not end up saving anything by reducing the guest list. Do you understand what I’m saying?

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

How to stick to a Nigerian Wedding Budget.

– Wedding planning can be overwhelming as expenses may unexpectedly arise, and people may pressure you to make purchases. It is important to take time to pray for guidance during this process.

– Make sure to plan and budget accordingly, taking into account the resources you have available. Don’t overspend or try to fit into a larger budget than you have. Be realistic with what you can afford.

– 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 importance of having a planner cannot be underestimated. At La’ Heiress, we will help you stay within your budget and avoid overspending.

– It’s important to remember that not everyone in your life should have a say in the decisions for your wedding. While it’s okay to listen to advice from friends, ultimately, the choices should be yours and not dictated by others.

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

– Be realistic with your expectations.

– It’s important to set aside a portion of your wedding budget for unexpected expenses. A good rule of thumb is to allocate 10% of the total budget for miscellaneous expenses.

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

Readers also love: How To Prevent Nigerian Wedding Vendors From Disappointing You.

Add a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.