I’m marrying my fiancee in less than a year and we are going to spend around $20,000 on the wedding.

Let that sink in for a moment. I’m sure I have some frugal readers who think I’m crazy, and I’m sure I have some not-so frugal readers who, well, also think I’m crazy. But I’m not.

I plan to talk a lot about the wedding and how much things are costing over the next few months, so I will be constantly referring to this article when people ask, “Why not just throw a kegger at your house and save all that money?!”

So here are the two main reasons why Tag and I are spending a boatload of money on our wedding.

I’m Accomplishing a Life Goal

A few years ago I sat down and wrote up a bunch of life goals. I had them pinned to a tack board in my bedroom and looked at them from time to time. I don’t do a great job of keeping up with these life goals, but there is one that is very important to me, and it reads as follows:

Give my future wife the wedding of her dreams.

This isn’t just a little important to me. It’s one thing that I expect to look back on and know, without any question in my mind, that I did everything I could to make my wife happy on her wedding day.

Obviously I don’t have unlimited funds so I can’t give her every single thing she wants, but I’m going to do everything I can to make it the wedding of her dreams on what I believe is a pretty significant budget. This is something I WANT to do for my wife, and I’m happy to do it.

I’m Creating a Life Long Memory

Guess what? This wedding isn’t just for my future wife. It’s also for me!

The whole reason I work hard and make money is to have incredible life experiences. After I put a roof over my head, food on the table, and money into savings, everything else is mostly allocated towards creating incredible memories.

I have absolutely fantastic memories of my 5 weeks of backpacking through Europe. My Costa Rica trip is such a fond memory that I actually had a dream about it last night; years after the trip!

wedding

photo credit: Katsunojiri

It’s amazing how often my vacation to New York and Boston in 2010 becomes relevant in conversation, and it’s still hard to believe it took me 28 years before I witnessed the size and beauty of the Grand Canyon.

Those trips were worth every penny I spent on them.

When Tag and went to Mexico last year and spent a whole week together, I knew that was a girl I could spend the rest of my life with. That trip was DEFINITELY worth every penny.

I literally have one single pair of jeans without holes in the knees right now. It’s been that way for over a year. In the last 3 years, I might have spent $300 TOTAL on clothing, with most of that going towards socks and underwear. I recently bought a new pair of tennis shoes because my other pair was 5 years old and had multiple holes in them.

I don’t even have a car because I work from home and my fiancee uses her car to work on weekdays. I don’t want to spend money on a car and insurance I don’t need because that money could be used to create an incredible memory.

I am frugal when it comes to day-to-day purchases. But I’m not frugal when it comes to the important stuff in my life, and what can be more important than marrying the woman I love?

If my goal is to use money to create incredible experiences and memories, then I’m actually thinking $20,000 on the biggest day of my life sounds like chump change.

I’m not just trying to create an incredible memory for myself and for Tag, but also for our family and friends who will be a part of the wedding. I want everyone to have good food and to drink as much as they like. I want a great photographer to capture all of the events of the night in clear, artistic photos. I want Tag to feel like the most beautiful woman in the world when she puts on that dress.

I’m Happy to Spend $20,000 on My Wedding

$20,000 is a lot of money. It’s also a very small amount of money when I consider how much I will earn over my lifetime.

I’m still contributing to my 401k. I’m still paying off all my credit cards at the end of every month. My student loans are still paid off (although Tag’s aren’t, but we’re working on it).

We can spend $20,000 on a wedding and still be in a very comfortable financial position.

We WILL spend $20,000 on our wedding, and we WILL create memories that last a lifetime!

Readers: If you are married, how much did you spend on your wedding?