How to Find Top Quality Wedding Rings Within Your Budget
No jewelry you own will ever be more important than your wedding ring. You and your beloved will be wearing your rings for a lifetime, so they have to be durable, beautiful and timelessly stylish. Unfortunately, this often means your wedding rings are very expensive.
The rising cost of quality wedding rings is leading many couples today to cut costs by skimping on their rings, choosing instead to save their money for a honeymoon or first home. Couples on a budget are sacrificing ring quality because they’re simply too costly. But you don’t have to choose between beautiful wedding rings or your finances – you have more choices than you might realize. Whether you’re looking for a simple wedding band or a more ornate ring with gems, you can find accessible, elegant options for far less.
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Finding the Right Ring Is Expensive
Wedding rings come in countless styles and materials, but there’s only one relationship like yours. There’s significant pressure to find wedding rings that are both representative of your love and beautiful to wear – after all, the wedding ring is even more important than an engagement ring. But it’s going to cost you thousands of dollars.
You may have heard that an engagement ring should cost two months’ salary, but what does that translate to for the typical couple? The average American couple spends nearly $2,000 on wedding rings, according to a report from Jewelers of America as published in the New York Times. After splurging on an engagement ring that totals thousands of dollars, how can you fit another couple thousand into your budget on top of life’s normal expenses?
Affordable Wedding Ring Options Do Exist
A ring meant to last forever is worth finding the best jewelry for your money, but you don’t have to spend a lot to get your perfect wedding ring. Here are some possibilities for saving money without skimping on sentiment or style.
If you already know the style and metal you want, do some careful comparison shopping. Every jewelry store you walk into wants you to walk out with a purchase. You can use this competition to your advantage by checking prices online to get the best price possible on your favorite style. Most jewelry store sales associates are authorized to offer you a better price if it means making the sale, so avoid buying from the first store you visit until you’ve seen what other deals you can find.
Think Outside the Jewelry Store
Plush carpeting, beveled glass cases and velvet displays in premium jewelry stores create a sense of luxury, but you pay a premium to shop there. Your elegant surroundings are included in the price of the rings in those sleek cases, so think of jewelry stores as a place to get ideas only. Other possibilities for affordable wedding rings include:
- Big box stores: Increasingly popular as a source for fine jewelry, including engagement and wedding rings, big box stores offer competitive pricing because they buy in bulk. You may not find the selection you’ll see in a traditional jewelry store, but if you want a classic, traditional design, you could find what you’re looking for at an excellent price.
- Department stores: The slightly more upscale cousins of big box stores, department stores often have well curated jewelry counters. They also have a wider range of styles than big box stores.
- Online stores: Shopping online is an excellent way to get the best price on a wedding ring because you can compare your options at the click of a few keys.
Find Family Heirlooms
Nothing costs less than free, and your perfect wedding ring could already be in a great-grandparent’s jewelry box. Ask relatives if they would be willing to welcome an addition to the family by passing along a cherished wedding ring to a new generation. An heirloom ring was good enough for Kate Middleton, and one may perfectly suit your beloved too.
Make the Most of Metals
Precious metals such as gold and platinum have prices to match. These metals are popular in part because they never tarnish or lose their beauty, but modern metallurgy has opened up a wealth of choices. If you think metals like titanium or stainless steel aren’t special enough, remember that aluminum was once precious too, as The Atlantic notes.
How to Get Started
Now that you have some ideas for economizing without compromising on an affordable and beautiful pair of wedding rings, start your search online. The more you research your ring options, the better you’ll be able to spot a deal when you find it. You’ll often find deals online that brick and mortar stores can’t match, so it’s never too soon to start looking. You can also ask friends who have recently gotten engaged or married about their experiences; they can help you find an artisan who will make your ring something special or connect you with a jeweler who can give you a friendly deal.
Like anything, it’s always a good idea to be aware of the latest research. We recommend comparing at least 3 or 4 options before making a final decision. Doing a search online is typically the quickest, most thorough way to discover all the pros and cons you need to keep in mind.