Photo: © Ria Mishaal Photography
In the past 12 months we’ve documented a notable shift in the volume of couples opting to book weddings on weekdays rather than opting for previously popular weekend dates.
And with couples saving an average of £1,679 by not booking a Saturday wedding it’s not difficult to see why, as a nation, we’re losing our love of the weekend wedding.
More of us are working flexibly these days too, so taking a day or two off mid week is no big deal anymore as many people will compensate by working the weekend instead.
The core theme of 2017-2018 is choice. Couples have more choice these days and flexibility is the trend of the Century.
But don’t take our word for it.
We met to discuss the weekday wedding trend with the team at South Farm.
Photo: © Photography by Bea
South Farm lies on the borders of Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire, and has been holding weddings for twelve years now. This well-established wedding venue boasts beautiful grounds, a gorgeous country farmhouse and lovingly converted barn buildings, as well as its very own organic smallholding providing much of the produce used for wedding breakfasts.
South Farm has experienced something of a weekday revolution over the last couple of years and, in fact, this wedding venue is now booking more weekday weddings than weekend dates.
James Paxman, Managing Director at South Farm says: “it is becoming more and more apparent that couples are keen to embrace a greater degree of flexibility around the date they choose for their wedding as it enables them to secure their dream venue at a fraction of the cost that weekend dates can command. We have long advised our couples never to underestimate how much people will want to come to their wedding, regardless of the day of the week, and we are seeing many couples now looking to take advantage of the lower venue hire fees offered on Mondays-Thursdays.”
Photo: © Milk Bottle Photography
Tip: Bridebook Business profiles that include pricing details receive 10x more enquiries than those who do not. Be transparent with your wedding venues weekday wedding costs.
The pricing structure at South Farm means that couples with their heart set on booking their wedding day at their dream venue can do so at a much lower cost midweek than they can on a Friday, Saturday or Sunday if they are able to be flexible. The savings this can afford couples means that they can free up their budget for other wedding costs, such as the all-important dress, booking other suppliers and even their honeymoon.
Because budget is so important, the South Farm team puts together a detailed and comprehensive cost estimate for each couple at their very first meeting.
James says: “as a venue we are completely transparent with regard to our costings; publishing all our prices and availability online, which helps hugely when couples are planning and budgeting for their big day. In fact we find, on average, that a couple’s final account is actually lower than their original estimate. By helping the couple manage their wedding costs with a working cost estimate, we enable couples to focus on the details and finishing touches for their wedding day whilst being fully informed of variations at all stages. At this first meeting we are also able to demonstrate to couples how much a weekday wedding can potentially save them.”
Photo: © Ria Mishaal Photography
Holding your wedding during the week at South farm could mean a saving of up to £4,000.
Tip: Regardless of how big or small a saving you could offer, wedding venues nationwide could explain what these kinds of cost savings could mean in real terms to wedding planning couples using Bridebook’s wedding budget estimate. You’ll surprise and delight them, and hopefully secure a weekday booking off the back of it.
Does having a weekday wedding mean that couples have to compromise?
At South Farm couples receive the same standard of service and catering options including a full range of menu choices and dedicated planning support in the lead up to their wedding day, regardless of the day of the week. If budget-savvy couples really can enjoy a greater choice of dates at a lower cost and enjoy the same quality of wedding day, it seems like a no brainer to us.
South Farm has also seen some of their recommended wedding suppliers follow suit and offer lower prices to clients for week-day bookings rather than weekend dates.
James says: “some of our suppliers, such as photographers and entertainers are now offering a price structure that reflects our own, with weekday bookings representing greater value for the same service compared with weekend dates. We expect that the industry will follow suit as couples increasingly demand high standards of service and greater price flexibility.”
Photo © Fiona Kelly Photography
So does that mean that weekend weddings are fast becoming a thing of the past?
“Despite the fact that weekend weddings command a higher venue price they still remain in demand, particularly in the summer months, and are usually the first dates to book up, however couples with a more flexible approach are taking advantage of our week-day venue fees. In 2017 we booked 93 weekend dates and 139 week-day dates at South Farm which demonstrates a shift in industry trends with lots of couples taking advantage of the pricing structures for weekday weddings and making great savings.”
These are interesting times for the wedding industry and South Farm are certainly seeing a shift in wedding day decisions.
Photo: © Lina & Tom
Does your wedding venue offer weekday discounts? Are you seeing more couples opt for weekday weddings?
We’d love to hear your thoughts.
Looking for more wedding industry trends and couple insights? Head to the Bridebook Business Hub, the home of wedding industry knowledge.