It could shave a sizable chunk off your bill and give you the pick of the starriest suppliers. Is it time to say goodbye to the weekend?
Saturday has one heck of a devoted fan club. It’s the only time those of us who slog it out Monday to Friday can let our hair down, hence why it’s the most popular day for weddings. Why, then, is the weekday wedding seeing a surge in popularity?
The days of easily bagging yourself a Saturday in any season, never mind everyone’s favourite month July, are long, long gone. Venues and suppliers are busier than ever and as their diaries become filled to bursting point, prices escalate from ‘maybe I just won’t have that takeaway latte this week’ to ‘how exactly do we remortgage the flat?’. It all means one thing: the savings, both emotionally and financially, in switching your do to a weekday are staggering.
“Weekend weddings are still the norm but weekdays are catching up,” admits Susan Spence, group operations manager for Manorview, which takes care of Cornhill Castle, a stately pile in Biggar, and many other Central Belt venues. “Dates are easier to secure during the week and a midweek celebration can be relatively straightforward to plan.” How so? “More suppliers are readily available and it enables some couples to enjoy a shorter engagement as it frees up dates that are not years in advance,” she adds.
The main benefit of marrying outwith the weekend is, naturally, the price. There are bargains to be had, if you’re prepared to dig around for deals. “Some people think that they can’t afford to tie the knot in their ideal venue, but they probably could if they looked at alternative midweek dates,” encourages Susan.
“It is more cost effective,” agrees Angela Ewing of Best Western Plus Keavil House Hotel in Dunfermline. “Couples will get a 10% discount on all of our inclusive packages.”
Speaking of packages, these are the holy grail of the weekday wedding. “At Dalduff Farm, a midweek date will save you roughly £1,800,” says Jeny Turner at the Ayrshire venue. “Our £2,500 package includes hire, corkage, two nights’ accommodation for ten people in the farmhouse, all equipment and various extras, such as the firepit.”
Vendor availability can be a stumbling block for a Saturday date. Exchange vows midweek and you’ll likely bypass this problem entirely. “There is more choice when it comes to bands, florists and photographers,” says Jeny. “They’re always happy to get involved in a weekday wedding.”
Susan cites price as another plus when booking suppliers outside of a weekend: “We often find that during the week, suppliers are less time pressed and more likely to be running competitively priced promotions,” she says.
With five days to choose from instead of one, which is best from a practical point of view? “We have had half a dozen weekday weddings recently and most of them have been on a Monday or a Thursday – because they are closer to the weekend,” reports Angela. “They all went according to plan.”
If midweek weddings are cheaper and more available, why don’t more of us do it? Let me take a wild guess: you’re worried about what your guests will think.
Others’ work commitments, inevitably, will prove to be your greatest challenge and people may feel you’re being unfair: “You do need to take your guests into consideration,” agrees Angela. “Is it feasible for them to take two days off (the day of the wedding and the following day)?”
As with any situation, though, it’s all about your outlook. For starters, family and friends might not necessarily have a traditional schedule. “Nowadays, a lot of people work more flexible hours,” points out Susan. “It might suit some people who work at weekends or have lots of activities going on with their kids.”
Finally, perspective can be crucial, and Jeny’s wise attitude will transform yours. “For me, guests who attend midweek weddings are the people who really want to be there,” she tells us. “You may shed a few friends along the way but, ultimately, you will be left with a list of loved ones who care about you the most.”
It’s similar to planning your nuptials abroad, in that the drop-out rate is higher, but those who do turn up are most definitely your nearest and dearest. Discovering who is truly there for you as you move forward in your marriage can be illuminating and liberating.