LAKELAND, Fla. - Isaac Mendoza crunches numbers for a living, he's an accountant. But nothing prepared him for the biggest event of his life.
On average, for a wedding with 138 guests, Pew Research and the US Census Bureau found the price tag is close to $27,000. Furthermore, nearly half of couples foot the bill themselves.
The price tag gave Mendoza and his fiancee sticker shock. "I did not see it coming at all!" said Mendoza. "I got completely overwhelmed."
They needed help, but a full time wedding planner didn't fit the couple's budget.
Mendoza heard of a new trend, and hired a 'day of' coordinator at a fourth of the price.
Typically, the coordinator enters the picture a couple weeks before the wedding to check plans, and is also there on the big day to make sure it goes off without a hitch.
"I felt we got a very solid deal for the services we were getting," said Mendoza.
At Eventrics, in Lakeland, it's one of two major cost-cutting moves.
"2013 has really picked up a lot, not only with day of coordination but getting married on a Monday through Friday," said wedding planner Brittany Ellis.
Ellis said venues can pretty much dictate the cost on weekends, but have more negotiating room during the week
"Sometimes the food and beverage costs are cut in half because you are not expected to meet with the demand that you would have on a Saturday or Sunday event," said Ellis.
The earlier in the week, the bigger the savings. Ellis is booking many brides on Mondays and Tuesdays.
"I think a lot of family members are quite understanding, especially if that couple is paying for that wedding themselves," said Ellis.
Mendoza is just happy they can afford some professional help.
"I have peace of mind that the day of, I really have nothing to worry about, except saying, 'I do.' It will be fun," said Mendoza.
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