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  • Writer's pictureAjay Manaktala

Indian Wedding Hacks | Ultimate Guide

Updated: May 7, 2020

Did Somebody say Indian Wedding Hacks?

What's up shaadi searchers!

It's no secret that Indian weddings are off the chain these days, with Priyanka Chopra and Sabyasachi and the Ambani's showing the world that even Beyonce can play an Indian wedding.

Best indian wedding usa hacks
We need a microphone to tell you this.

Regardless, for most of us in the middle-class, or just folks who don't like insane excess, I need to tell you something:

More money does not equal better Indian wedding.

You should of course spend in your limits and make sure all the extra stuff you're getting has a purpose (I'm a fan of great decoration for sure), but don't spend money on fireworks at 3AM or $2000 on extra plates of sushi nobody would want.

And don't come in on a helicopter for your baraat unless you made sure it's not going to blow away your $20,000 decoration ok?

That being said, having done over 1000 weddings, I want to tell you tricks that make your wedding so special in America or Thailand or India or wherever that your friends and family will be leaving with the biggest smiles on their faces.

It's easy to have a big fancy wedding, but it's a bit harder to have a fun, love filled, genuine wedding that people enjoy and fly home with smiles on their faces and memories in their heart.

Indian wedding Hacks to Save Budget and Increase Fun
That feeling you get when you spent less than most people for your wedding but everybody is saying yours was the most fun.

1. Digital Marriage Invites are Fine. And preferred.

As we talked about in sending WhatsApp invites for weddings, these days nobody wants a big fat envelope they're just going to feel guilty about throwing away anyways. Digital invites are:

  • Cheaper

  • More convenient

  • Easily updatable

  • Ideal

  • Effective

  • Required even if you do print and mail separate invites

Indian culture gets so caught up in physical printed invites, or sending walnuts and sweets that many people don't even eat these days. So rather than accumulate more stuff in your drawer, why not recognize EVERYBODY does digital these days. Heck, if you're worried about offending anyone, go ahead and visit their house and send the whatsApp next to them.

That doesn't mean you still don't have to:

  • make a website,

  • have a proper mailer,

  • and ensure accurate and timely communication,

but you definitely don't need crazy fancy invites despite what aunties and uncles say. (But make sure you call the traditional folks and remind them formally you want them to come).

If you still need to send physical invites or need it for spousal immigration, go ahead and make 20 copies and use as needed.

indian wedding hacks to save money
Your high school and college friends are happy for you. Make them happy by spending more than a selfie with them.

2. Talk to every guest for more than a selfie.

Give them each two full minutes until THEY get awkward and I guarantee they'll appreciate how warm you were.

This is the number one wedding hack I stake my career on, and I shout it to the rafters at every wedding to every couple. More than a great buffet or having John Legend sing at your reception, you need to make sure each guest gets more than selfie face time with you.

Rule of thumb, over the to each guest for 2 minutes.

120 seconds.

After a minute they'll feel awkard thinking you have somewhere to be or see people asking for your attention, but they'll be so amazed that you took the time to make them feel like number one!

Learn to be presidential and do it!

indian wedding hacks to save cash
I'm so glad we matched! Groom gang for life!

3. Buy your Groom's gang outfit from Amazon, don't stress out people in India or try to buy internationally.

At my own wedding my friends from all over the world are asking things lke:

  • What should I wear to your wedding?

  • Do I really need to wear that?

  • Can you get it for me? I'll just wear a suit, ok wait, no, yeah, get it for me! Is everybody else wearing Indian?

  • What's my size?

  • I don't want it too loose, or too tight, or OMG!

Yes you and your squad for your baraat should coordinate your outfits. You may not care but you will wish you did during the wedding when your heart is in the moment.

No you shouldn't ask someone from India to figure out 12 kurtas and sizes and cargo at the last minute.

Indian wedding attire America
Just direct them to Amazon and tell them the color they need to wear to match your Groom gang yeah?

Instead these days, in America or India, simply buy cheap kurtas for your friends on Amazon, let them pick the color and size and either buy it themselves or give you 20 bucks later.

Or simply gift to them as a gift for coming yeah?

Another great option is to tell them to buy their kurta's, but you buy them bandis (vests) that all match, so you have some great photos!

Amazon USA: Mens Kurta for Indian Wedding Male Guest (Can't go Wrong)

Amazon USA: Ladies Lehenga for Sangeet or Wedding or Reception

4. Get a choreographer online to do your Sangeet dances.

Nobody ever practices their Sangeet dances on time, and you assuming they will is wishful thinking.

Sangeet wedding hacks
Suggestion on how to pair your Sangeet dances.

Instead. hire somebody in India to choreograph your sangeet performances at around $150-$200 per 3-minute dance or work out a deal. Then simply whatsApp or email the videos to your friends and your'e good!

I can't stress this enough as a great hack. Here are two we know, but you can find any online.

Your friends will have absolutely no excuse if you send them a front facing and back facing dance video for a 90 second to 2 minute dance. They can memorize it on the plane on the way to your wedding, but coordinate and non-half-as$ed dances make a huge difference in a great sangeet!

We have a full post on just this!

5. The NoSpam Shaadi WhatsApp

Points number five (this one) and two pretty much keep our blog alive, and we shout it from the rafters every week.

Here is the best hack I've ever seen for making sure guests are happy at a big fat Indian wedding.

  • 1. Make a WhatsApp group

  • 2. Change permissions so only you and/or your wife can send messages