I am writing this post because I feel like this is such an important discussion that we don’t have enough of these days.
I have written before about costs of a wedding in Romania – but maybe it’s because the text is written in Romanian, or it’s buried deep in my blog and people can’t seem to find/read it anymore… I’m not sure.
But this is a necessary conversation and I think I’m gonna pin this one down for people to easily find it while wandering on my blog.
- First thing you need to know about organising a wedding in Romania is that IT’S NOT GOING TO BE CHEAP. There is this misconception that Romania is a cheap destination for a wedding. While that might be true on some aspects – in the larger perspective of a wedding no, don’t expect to find here half prices, because that just won’t happen…
- SIZE MATTERS (not only in Romania, but I guess this is a point worth considering). You might hear about someone who has planned a wedding here spending around 15.000 euro – but you must also analyse the following aspects: it was probably a tiny event (max. 50-60 guests), they did not spend a fortune on clothes, there probably was no live music and the extras included (speciality bar, styling services, drinks etc) were kept to a minimum. Think about it – a 100 guests event it’s already double for variable costs and might bring an extra 5-8000 euro spending for food and drinks alone…
- We have OPEN BARS This is how most of the venues get a large part of the income – so if you’re not willing to pay a considerable price/guest in order to have a full open bar for 8/10/12/more hours, then you’ll have to pay that price in some other form (rent/service fee etc).
- We EAT A LOT at weddings. Think minimum 3, maximum 5 courses. So when you get a price for a menu, remember that it’s not just starters + main course, but probably more like starters + 3 main courses or such.
- LUXURY* IS EXPENSIVE. Nope, Romanian Luxury is not cheaper than Western Luxury, as Luxury still is Luxury and does not care about minimum wages. *and by luxury I don’t mean sparkles and posh, but quality, comfort and all the cakes you want to eat and have them too.
- REMOTE= EXTRA EXPENSES. I believe a lot of people are seduced these days by the idea of having a wedding in Transylvania. Now, Transylvania might mean Cluj, or Sibiu, or Sighișoara. But if we’re talking about remote venues (such as mansions/castles) remember that you will have to accommodate and feed a whole team of vendors. Everything will come with an extra cost (just an example – a hairstylist won’t come to your venue unless you can provide 5-7 clients + transportation expenses, maybe even accommodation if your mind is set on an experience stylist from Bucharest, let’s say).
- REMOTE = EXTRA STRESS. You’ll need to make sure that all your guests find their way to their hotels and then to the wedding venue. You won’t probably be able to accommodate more than 50-60 guests right at the venue (more like 30-40). But you will not be able to book transportation until the last few weeks before the wedding, when you’ll know for sure how many guests there are, where they are staying etc. See? Stress.
- ROADS are not your best friends. Also, we’re not so good with trains. So if google maps indicates a 3h trip, think more like 5…
- Parties are LONG and vendors charge for 14-16 hours. I have heard opinions about photographers being more expensive than UK ones – well, you might be comparing apples with oranges…
- If you want a different/smaller kind of event, aim for WEEK DAYS. In weekends there are a lot of Romanian clients who will want a long, big wedding – so probably venues but also vendors will not be willing to settle for a smaller event and a lower price for fewer hours etc. First rule in here – you pay more, but you also get more.
- Experienced WEDDING PLANNERS are not cheap. Especially if we’re talking about a remote wedding.
- Everything is getting more expensive by the day. Flowers, food, drinks. It is the cost of the war in a nearby country, the cost of the gas, petrol. Budgets made 3 months ago are already insufficient for weddings taking place this summer. So if you read an article written 3-4 years ago about wedding fees, consider that information obsolete…
- (Outdoors) RELIGIOUS ceremonies are complicated. I would like to say more about that, but it would take me a brand new post to cover all the points and bullets.
- But it is worth it.
Bottom line – if you’re thinking about choosing Romania for a destination wedding on a rather tiny budget, you can have that, as long as: – you keep it small (50-60 guests max), you go for a week day or winter time, you hold your priorities in place, you cross live music from your list, you pick a city (Bucharest, Brasov, Cluj, Sibiu etc) and not a remote venue.
Or you can have a luxurious/lush wedding in an amazing remote venue, for 3 days and nights, during a summer weekend, that will wow your guests and create an unforgettable experience, but that might come at a way bigger price than the one you’re probably considering right now.