Planning a wedding in 12 months is stressful and planning one in a short space of time is even harder but not impossible. You can still plan a memorable Nigerian wedding and a great reception party in a space of 3 months or less if you follow our checklist below that will help you keep you organized and on schedule.
Some men just want to propose and get married in a few, short months. It’s like, why wait? Not everyone likes the idea of waiting long after a proposal, planning a wedding in 12 months or even in 6 months. Wedding planning is overwhelming and stressful, not many people want to cut down the time of stress. Aside from that, some couples just want to get married right away by planning a quick Nigerian wedding in 3 months or less.
In this post, I’ll provide you with a 3-month wedding planning checklist and a few important things to keep in-view to ensure you execute the most memorable event of your life. For a long, time, we’ve been getting many requests to write this planning a wedding on short-notice guide and it’s time to put it out there.
14-Step Checklist to Planning a Nigerian Wedding in 3 Months or Less (and Timeline)
Not everyone wants to wait a year or more to get married, especially if they already know they are ‘the one’ for each other. Maybe the bride suddenly got pregnant; maybe the couple’s office schedule is tight and both have just taken a short leave, or maybe they can’t spend another year living apart.
Maybe one of the couples suddenly wants to relocate abroad and wants to seal the deal before heading off. Maybe they have just saved up enough for the wedding and don’t want to risk spending the cash if they fix the wedding date far in advance. No matter why you want to plan your wedding in 3 months or less, let’s give you a roadmap and that ensures you’ll not get over-stressed ofr overwhelmed while planning a wedding on short notice.
Step 1: Fix the Date
First thing is to pick a date, preferably between now and the next 3 or 3 months. You need to fix this soonest, as wedding venues and vendors can only be booked with dates. Most Nigerian couples are forced to the wedding dates their churches or worship houses assign to them. Therefore, you may not have a lot of decisions here.
The availability of your desired venue types may also limit you to the dates you can choose to fix your wedding, as some in-demand hotel and event venues are fully booked in advance. Use our quick steps to choose the best wedding date. Depending on your timeline/ how far in advance you want to host your wedding, these checklists will keep yu focused and organized:
Step 2: Choose the Location (State/Country)
Once you sorted the wedding date, the next thing is to decide on the place (the country, if not in Nigeria; the state and city).
Step 3: Just Do It! Start Planning Immediately
Once you’ve picked the date, start the planning and ‘doing’.
Step 4: Set a specific budget (amount) for the wedding
Decide on how much you can afford to spend on your wedding, and commit to it.
Step 5: Allocate Part of the Overall Budget to Different Expenses
Now, split your overall wedding budget into different spending areas AND try to book or buy things within those limits.
You don’t want to be thinking of a N100k trad wedding attire if the breakdown suggests you have N150k for both the bride and groom’s attire. Be real and true to the size of your pocket.
Step 6: Fix the Number of Guests to Invite
Set a realistic number of guests you want to host. You can also work it out from your catering budget, as I show here. Know that you cannot afford to invite everybody, except you have unlimited money to feed EVERYBODY. So, only invite the number of people your catering budget can feed. Every single guest costs money (food cost is per plate; venue cost is per space that people occupy). If you want too many people, then find more money to feed more.
- Reasons to Make a Wedding Guest Count and List Before Inviting Anyone
- How to Make a Guest List: Step by Step
- How to Reduce Your Guest List to An Affordable Number
Step 7: Decide on Venue Budget and Book a Location Soonest (Month 1)
When planning a wedding in a short space of time, you need to quickly book a venue and let all your guests know you’re getting married – the date and place. I recommend that you book a venue in month 1, as your guests need to be invited about 2 months before the wedding.
Once you do your wedding budget breakdown you should know how much to allocate for wedding venue expenses. After that, start going out to find and choose a venue. When planning a wedding in a short space of time such as 3 months, you need to quickly book a venue and let all your guests know you’re getting married – the date and place.
Since you have very little planning time (3 months), you should book a venue as quickly as you can to avoid disappointment. Also, because every other thing revolves around the location (and date, which you should have also picked, and a budget). Be realistic again with your venue budget (from the breakdown) and look for the class and type of venue within what you can afford.
There’s no time to go round and round. The good news is that you can find a decent venue at any decent price. If on a low budget, consider outdoor types of venues such as open fields, gardens, restaurants, schools (most schools are used for Saturday weddings) and church wedding reception venues. Some hotels offer their event and wedding halls cheaper on weekdays, so consider that.
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Good morning please my wedding is Dec dis year
And we just pick d date last month only ave 1m how can I do it without any issue please 😟
Stella Anokam says
1) The starting point in wedding planning is setting a budget, which you have done (your N1m).
2) Next is to make a budget breakdown to plan how much to spend on what. I created an automatic wedding budget calculator that can do a starter-breakdown for you. Go to that page, type in your budget amount and copy the suggested budget allocation. You can later tweak it to suit your needs.
3) Make a list of your non-negotiables. Those are where to allocate the most money and detail. For many Nigerian brides, it’s photography and the look + couple’s outfits, and a good DJ. What’s yours?
4) Follow my tips on how to guarantee that your wedding day will be perfect as planned, with no issues.
5) Prepare a wedding day emergency kit to help you quench any sudden unpleasant issues, if they do happen.
6) Read this to know what usually goes wrong at weddings, and use the tips to avoid them on your big day.
7) No one plans a wedding alone. So, form your personal planning squad. Invite others to help you, and tell them early.
8) Book your venue early, and be armed with my list of what to look for in a wedding venue.
9) Hire tried and trusted vendors. Ask friends and relatives for recommendation. The best planning can be ruined by bad vendors. Therefore, choose your vendors carefully.
10) Prepare a day-of-wedding schedule that details the flow of things on your big day, and assign one of your trusted persons as your wedding-day-coordinator. Hand a copy of your wedding day schedule to that person. *This is the person that makes sure everything runs smoothly while you’re having fun on your big day. To help you our, I wrote a post on the duties of a day-of-wedding-coordinator.
11) I wrote some helpful tips to avoid other known common wedding planning mistakes:
Tips to avoid common wedding reception mistakes
Many weddings were either ruined by a bad photographer or one that never showed up, and it’s common. You can avoid that by using the tips in my wedding photography planning mistakes to avoid.
Finally, if you are too busy to commit time to planning your wedding yourself, hire a wedding planner to plan the entire thing for you or plan the early part and hire a planner to be your day-of-wedding coordinator.
Hope that helps. Happy planning!
Nice write up.
I prefer planning in the shortest time possible because I’ll be up and doing, and give it my best shot!
Stella Anokam says
Hello Amazing. You’re not alone – some people get worked-up when planning a wedding takes too long. That’s why I wrote this quickie wedding planning checklist.
I’m glad you like it. Thanks for your feedback.
Good day how can I plan a wedding with 500k with a guest of 80
Stella Anokam says
Hello Favour. First, you need to make an expense list and then specify how much to spend on each one. Total them up and be sure that they do not exceed your N500k. Use that as a guide to shop and hire venue and vendors.
You can use a calculator, pend and paper to do this. If you hate stress, use NaijaGlamWedding’s budget calculator – just type in your budget amount, press enter and you’ll see the breakdown displayed on your screen. Feel free to adjust things to suit you – it’s just a guide.
Let me know how it goes. Happy wedding-planning!
Ernest gloria says
Hi, Gooday I just came across ur page by God’s grace my wedding is may 2021. How do i plan with 1million, with 500 guests thanx.
Stella Anokam says
Welcome here, Gloria. I’m glad to have you around. Thanks for your question. Here’s my reply:
1) See examples from other people’s N1 million Naira wedding budget. See what they spent on and how much they spent on different things. It always helps to know what to expect if we see how others did what we are planning to do.
2) One million Naira is a lot of money, but when you have 500 guests that will break down to Two Thousand Naira per guest on food alone. That means you’ll have to look for extra money on the other wedding things like couple’s outfits, venue hire, photography/ video coverage, etc.
3) An idea could be:
-N500k on catering (food and drinks). Find a caterer that will charge N1k (one thousand Naira) per plate of food and a drink – meaning N500k on food and drinks;
-Use the remaining N500k (five hundred thousand Naira) to cover every other expense.
It’s your wedding, and you have made up your mind on the number of guests you want to have, but I think that you can have a fancier and quality wedding if you cut down on the number of guests.
That way, you’ll have more money to get better quality things, such as a better venue, better wedding gown and groom’s suit, quality photographer and vendors.
A very large number of wedding guests (500) is too many to work with N1m wedding budget, due to the cost of things in present-day Nigeria.
So, there you have my tips on how to make your N1m work for 500 guests and my suggestion for you to consider reducing the number of guests (as an alternative).
Hope that helps.
Igwegbe Nneoma says
Your blog is quite insightful. Thanks for sharing. I will follow you on ig, kindly reciprocate.
Stella Anokam says
Aww! Thanks. Here’s everywhere that you can find and follow us, just in case.
Aghomo Jessica says
Good day, I just came across your page, it’s really helpfully going throug it, please my wedding is the last week of December 2020, how do I plan with 500,000, with a 100 guess.
Stella Anokam says
Hello Jessica, thanks for being here, and for the positive feedback. I made a sample N500k wedding budget breakdown (click) that you could pick an idea or two to plan yours. I hope it helps you.
If you also want some cost-saving tips, take a look at this post ==> How to Plan an Inexpensive Wedding in Nigeria (19 Practical Ideas).
I like that you’re clear on your wedding goals – the exact budget (N500k) and the exact number of guests (100). Well done on that – that’s how we advise couples to start, but most brides don’t do that.
I hope those tips help. Feel free to comment again if you have another question.