Wedding Planning | How To Create A Realistic Wedding Budget

White and green tented wedding reception

It’s time to talk about the elephant in the room—wedding budgets.

It’s no surprise that weddings are expensive. Due to the cost of inflation in a post-pandemic world, goods and services continue to increase in price, thus increasing the cost of weddings. That is why we want to share with you a breakdown of how to realistically create your wedding budget and what to expect for some starting from costs in the Savannah region.

Before diving in and knowing that the economy is ever-changing, we wanted to note that these numbers listed in this blog are as of May 2023 and may continue to fluctuate occasionally.

How to Create Your Wedding Budget

When working with a Design Studio South planner for your full-service wedding design and planning, we work with you to create a custom budget with a detailed breakdown of each item. Using our 13+ years of experience in the event industry, we will outline the cost of your dream wedding design and factor in your top priorities. For many of our clients, the top three budget areas tend to be food, flowers, and entertainment.

From there, you may find we need to “trim the fat” and adjust your design to your budget or have extra wiggle room for custom details.

What To Budget For Your Savannah Wedding?

Once we have your dream design set and priorities outlined, we will allocate the appropriate funds to each category based on the scale, size, and complexity of your event.

As a good reference point, we recommend budgeting a minimum of $1,300 per guest for your wedding in Savannah. The weddings you see in our portfolio are full-service wedding and design clients who typically have a budget of $130k+. So, for a guest count of 100, we recommend budgeting $1,300 per person and $130,000 in total. Of course, there are many variables in play when it comes to your wedding budget, and this number can fluctuate with add-ons or necessity items.

Why does a Savannah wedding cost so much, you may ask? 

Well, remember those top three budget categories we mentioned above, food, flowers, and entertainment? Those three categories will likely eat up a large portion of your overall budget. For reference, wedding flowers in the Savannah and surrounding area start at $200 per guest; catering often starts at $150 per person, while entertainment, such as a band, can often be in the range of $12-15k. Keep in mind that these numbers are just the starting from costs and can increase. 

Now we know budgets and numbers are not the first topic you want to discuss when wedding planning. However, we believe it is important to be educated about the realistic cost of a wedding in a post-pandemic world. We hope you’ve found this article helpful and that you feel inspired about your wedding design and budget. If you are newly engaged and have just begun wedding planning, be sure to check out more wedding planning tips on the Design Studio South journal here! 

Cocktail party by the pool
White wedding lounge
Tented wedding
White and green tented wedding reception
White wedding stage with chandeliers


Photography // Kelli Boyd Photography
Design + Planning // Design Studio South
Florist //  Em Creative Floral Design
Hair + Makeup // Brides Side Beauty 
Cake // Vanilla And The Bean
Venue + Caterer // Ford Field & River Club
Musicians + Band // Equinox Orchestra 
Coffee Bar // Origin Coffee Bar
Draping //  Underneath The Veil
Lighting //  Technical Event Company
Tent + Rentals // Snyder Events 
Flooring + Rentals //  Amazing Event Rentals
Rentals //  Ooh Events & Savannah Vintage & Event Rentals
Tree Rentals //  Pineland Nursery
Linens //  Stradley Davidson & Nuage Designs
Paper Goods + Signs // Cake Paperie
Classic Car //  Callans Classics
Tour Trolley //  Kelly Tours & Old Savannah Tours
Guest Transportation // Old Savannah Tours
Valet Service //  AAA Parking
Rehearsal Dinner Ice Cream //  Leopolds Ice Cream