The Pros and Cons of Paying for a Wedding on a Credit Card
How are you planning to pay for your wedding? Let’s explore the pros and cons of paying for your wedding expenses on a credit card.
So, you’ve decided on a wedding budget and are ready to officially begin working with wedding professionals. But before you go booking anything, you and your partner will want to decide on your payment method (or methods!) for your wedding. Many wedding professionals may request to be paid by check, but a fair amount will accept credit cards. That means you have options!
Because it’s far more common to pay for wedding vendors and other expenses by check or even cash, we thought we would shine a light on the pros and cons of financing your wedding day and wedding vendors with a credit card. With this in mind, we hope you will be able to make a payment method decision that allows you and your partner to move forward with confidence.
The Pros of Paying for a Wedding with a Credit Card:
Let’s start on a positive note! There are three key positives that come to mind when considering if you would like to pay for your wedding via credit card.
Pro: Spread Out Payment Time:
When you decide to book a wedding professional’s services, it’s highly likely your first steps toward confirming your working relationship will be to sign a contract and remit your first payment (oftentimes referred to as a “deposit” or “retainer”). All other payments are typically due several days prior to the day you say, “We do.” If you’re planning your wedding on a shortened timeline, you haven’t been able to save as much as you hoped, or you feel as though you would like to spread your payments out overtime, a credit card can be a great option.
With a credit card, you will be able to charge any amount up to your credit card’s spending limit. Then you will be able to pay off that amount at your leisure. Keep in mind, interest rates may apply (they can be 15% or more). But if you can source a credit card with a 0% interest introductory offer, the extended timeline you will have to pay off your wedding may make the use of a credit card worth it.
Pro: Earn and Utilize Credit Card Rewards:
Agreeing to work with wedding professionals and purchasing wedding details will likely be some of the more expensive purchases you will make in a row. Though you may experience a bit of sticker shock, one bonus is you will be able to rack up points with your credit card very quickly. That can be wonderful, especially if you’re planning to visit a destination where you can use your points for flights, hotel stays, or experiences during your honeymoon. Your wedding day might help to pay for your first adventure as a married couple!
Note: If you do plan to use rewards points for travel, take note of any expiration dates. Not all points can be used indefinitely, so you will want to make sure you’re planning to travel before any points are set to disappear.
Pro: You Can Dispute Charges:
As a general rule, if you pay for an item or service with cash and discover an issue without a receipt, outside of a return window, or without a return policy in place, the likelihood of your money being returned to you is slim. However, if you dispute a charge on your credit card with your credit card company with a valid reason, there’s more of a likelihood your credit card company will take your side and return your funds. That’s great news!
Although the above is true, there is one specific key point to keep in mind: You are unlikely to win a dispute case when the wedding professional has a rock-solid contract they have honored in full. Declaring that you didn’t like the personality of a professional or deciding you don’t like a photographer’s style are not reasons for a credit card company to fight for your cause (both are covered and protected in most contracts). On the flip side, not receiving the services or items you paid for is a reason to file a dispute. It’s worthwhile to spend time ensuring you understand the differences.
The Cons of Paying for a Wedding with a Credit Card:
Although there are a few pros to paying for your wedding with a credit card, there are also plenty of cons. The largest among them? The ease with which you can slip into debt.
Con: You Can Go Into Debt:
Paying for your wedding with a credit card (or shopping with a credit card) can feel like you’re spending “imaginary” or “free” money because it’s not immediately leaving your checking account. As a result, you may find you quickly spend much more on your celebration than you initially intended. Something to keep in mind, especially if your credit card accrues interest, is to make sure you’re paying off your balance each month. If you spend more than your monthly budget will allow you to pay back, you can easily slip into debt from your wedding and begin to negatively impact your credit score (something you will need to purchase a home or car in the future).
Debt is one of the key things we recommend avoiding while planning your wedding because you’re funding a party at the end of the day. And a party with debt that can impact you for years to come just doesn’t seem worth it.
Con: Interest and Fees Can Add Up:
Most credit cards require you to pay interest on any funds you do not immediately pay off each month. Although some credit card companies may offer 0% interest, that’s typically only available for a period of time — and interest can add up. Not only that but if you fail to make a full payment or an on-time payment, the credit card company will charge you a fee that may or may not be able to be reversed. If any of this happens, you’re not only paying for your wedding but you’re also paying additional amounts on top of it.
Con: You’re Paying for Your Wedding Over Time:
One of the pros of paying for your wedding with a credit card is you can pay off your expenses over an extended timeline. However, the reverse is also true. Once your wedding is complete, you will experience plenty of moments of wanting to relive your day. But you will also experience just as many moments (if not more) where you and your partner feel thrilled about moving forward toward the next step you would like to take together. If you choose to use a credit card, you may feel stilted by the payments you’re continuing to make, which can make the process of moving forward far more difficult and lengthy.
There are positives and negatives to any method you choose to use to pay for your wedding. But paying by credit card does carry more risk along with it because the potential to spend more than you can realistically afford is very much present. If you do decide to pay for your celebration’s expenses via credit card, make sure to do so responsibly (just like you would if you pay by check!). Debt and credit card stress for your wedding is not worth it in the end. So look into credit cards with low interest, continue to stick to a budget, and only spend what you can comfortably remit back to your credit card company each month.
How are you planning to pay for your wedding? Are you paying by cash, check, or are you planning to use a credit card? Let’s keep the conversation going in our community!
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