4 Little-Known Wedding Costs to Keep in Mind

If you are engaged, you are probably excited about various aspects of planning your wedding: the color scheme of the tables and chairs, the venue for the ceremony and reception and what music you'll play. You also have to give plenty of thought to how much you will have to save and who will pay for everything. According to a survey by wedding website The Knot, the average cost of a U.S. wedding is nearly $29,000.

Since thinking about how you will pay for it all may add to the stress of preparing for the big day, it's important to think about both small and big expenses.

Here are four little-known wedding costs to keep in mind:

1. Postage
You might have spent hundreds of dollars on stationary that is elaborate and conveys your and your partner's personalities perfectly, but you also have to factor in the cost of postage. Determine whether you will send Save the Dates, wedding invitations, RSVP cards or other stationary and ask yourself if you will send these together or separately. By knowing this, you can then plan how many stamps you need to purchase. Keep in mind that some pieces of mail, such as square envelopes, may cost more to send, according to the U.S. Postal Service.

2. Officiant
Before you can tie the knot, you will probably have to hire an officiant to preside over the marriage ceremony. The cost could depend on the type of ceremony you have and where the venue is. There may be a fee to use a church for the ceremony as well as the cost of an officiant. However, there are other cases where you can simply pay for the officiant separately if you already had a venue in mind. You also have the option of having someone certified online marry you as cost-cutting measure.

"The fee to obtain your marriage license could be between $10 and $115."

3. Wedding License
After you and your partner say your "I dos," you have to still make it official. Each state will require a marriage license fee. The fee to obtain your marriage license could be between $10 and $115, according to USMarriageLaws.com. The cost of the license will likely vary depending on the state, municipality and county where you obtain your license and get married. There is also the chance you will have to spend money to receive a copy of your marriage license if your state does not give you one, Bridal Guide pointed out.

4. Costs of Tips
Whether you have your wedding in a park or host an extravagant affair at a hotel, you should include tips in your total budget. You will likely have vendors you have to tip in addition to the cost of their services. According to The Knot, vendors on the potential list to tip include the:

  • Wedding planner
  • Delivery staff
  • Hair stylist and makeup artists
  • Officiant
  • Musicians/DJs
  • Wedding reception staff (waiters, bartenders, etc.)
  • Drivers

These tips may either expected or optional and may reach up to 20 to 25 percent of the total bill, especially if it concerns drivers or people serving food or drinks.