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A common worry for many couples boils down to money, especially in the UK where the rising cost of living continuously dents the wallets of those trying to save. With this in mind, it's easy to see why things such as weddings can cause so much stress.

Weddings, as a rule, cost a lot of money. In fact, in the UK alone last year, the average couple splashed out £21,000 on their big day – a figure that for many, seems almost unimaginable.

Luckily, there are a few ways to enjoy one the biggest days of your life without creating a colossal amount of debt or spending all your savings. All it takes is a little imagination and a few willing friends, not to mention a shoestring budget.

Go it alone...

Posh cars, extravagant venues and fancy finger food, things that every wedding should have, right? Wrong. Just because the majority of people go down the traditional route doesn't mean you have to. In fact, due in part to the number of white weddings people attend, it's often the more bespoke and original weddings that stand out in the memory.

Going it alone and creating a wedding that's totally unique means you could end up avoiding some of the expensive things that often send wedding bills spiralling out of control. For example, rather than having your reception in a posh hotel or stately manor, if you've got a lovely garden, home or park nearby, why not have your reception there for free?

...Or phone a friend

So you live in a block of flats in the middle of London, we get it: you might struggle to host your wedding reception. If that's the case, fear not – now is the time to cash in all those favours you pulled back in the day and ask your friends if they'd be willing to lend you their garden or home for your reception.

Weddings are a time of celebration, and people love rallying around to help their friends or relatives get the most out of their big day – so if you know someone who's got a garden the size of a small football pitch, why not send them a quick message and see if they'd mind helping you out?

Cheap and easy

As well as costing a considerable amount of money, the average couple can expect to invest an incredible amount of time into their wedding. This, unfortunately, can be an issue for some as prior commitments – such as work and social events – dominate their calendars. Luckily for these people, companies such as Old English Inns and the Normandy Hotel have stepped in to help.

A wedding at the Normandy Hotel can provide a red carpet on arrival, a four course dinner for 30 guests and the services of a toast master for a fraction of the average price of a venue. What's more, the hotel will also provide place cards and a seating plan – which means you can spend less time organising and more time doing the things you love.

Be creative

Allowing your mind to wander and your imagination to run wild is always fun. Thinking outside of the box can produce some truly amazing results – especially when it comes to your wedding day – so why not get together with your partner and brainstorm some quirky alternatives for your big day.

There are a million and one ways to get married, so don't think you're limited to hosting it in your friend's garden or local church. Across the internet, there are stories of couples getting married in car parks, windmills and even cemeteries, so if you've got a venue in mind that's off the beaten track, ask permission and then just go for it! Sure, you might not be able to legally get married there, but as long as you sign the relevant documents at a registry office soon after the event, what's the harm in pretending for a day or two?

Even if you've found the one, taking the next steps towards a happy, secure future is not always easy. Sure, you've come a long way since you first met, but that's not to say you might not have any worries about the future. Luckily, our blog is dedicated to helping you get the most out of your money – so be sure to check it out the next time you find yourself counting the coppers.