The Money Talk
Before you say "I Do" there are a lot of things a newly engaged couple must talk about. One of those things is the uncomfortable money talk. Maybe you've already had a talk but you only talked basics like salary and credit score but that's only the beginning. You need to have this conversation to avoid any issues down the road.
Before walking down the aisle you need to make sure all your financial skeletons are out of the closet. Make sure you talk about school loans, credit card debt, and anything else (car loans, private loans, etc). This may be awkward to talk about but it'll save you from any uncomfortableness down the road. You don't want to add on to debt by paying for a wedding you can't afford.
Talk to Your Fiance
Before speaking with your parents, sit down with your partner and discuss your expectations. Make sure you both are on common ground in both your vision and your expectation for your wedding. Be honest about your financial situation ( see above).
Politeness is the Way to Go
If you need to talk to your parents and ask for money whether it is in person or on the phone-- remember to be polite!
If money is offered, do your parents or soon-to-be parents now feel they can control the wedding? You'll need to be clear about what you and your partner expect for the wedding. At the same time, be aware that they are now involved because of their contribution. Don't borrow money, you don't want to start your marriage with debt.
Avoid Hurt Feelings
Remember you have two sides of a family now--yours and his. If your parents offer to pay half for the wedding, make sure you run this by your soon-to-be parents. You do not want to be in a situation where one side feels hurt because they can't contribute as much as another side. This has nothing to do with wedding etiquette-- make sure you're comfortable with who pays for what.
Listen--just because Meghan Markle spent $500,000 for flowers doesn't mean you should too! If you're planning on paying for the wedding yourselves a good rule of thumb is to decide how much you can save each month to put towards a wedding fund. Make sure you keep a running total as you go so you are aware of how much you've saved.
Making purchases with your debit card will allow you to see real time deductions so you can see how much you have left. In addition, sharing a Google Doc or an Excel Sheet will allow you and your partner see where and how money is being spent.