5 Unexpectedly Large Wedding Expenses

A wedding is the first time many couples plan a large event together. However, many couples do not expect the average wedding to cost more than a down payment on an amazing home. Weddings are expensive, and the small costs associated with them can begin to really add up over time. If you are in the midst of planning a wedding, here are 5 unexpectedly large wedding expenses to look out for.

Wedding Venues

One of the most expensive aspects of a wedding is the venue. The location where the new couple will exchange their vows can have significant importance. It is important for couples to budget properly for a reception venue, which costs an average of $15,000 nationwide. (1) Couples will have literally hundreds of locations to choose from, including vineyards, hotels, beaches, and ships.

Transportation will also be an important factor, with many couples choosing to hire a limousine for the bride and groom to get to and from the venue. Depending on the venue, you may also have to provide transportation to the wedding guests.

Flowers and Decoration

Your weddings decorations can take a toll on your budget, and most couples will need to set aside funds if they wish to have a professional florist arrange the flowers and decor. The bride, her bridesmaids, and the flower girls will all also need bouquets. (1) Tables will also need linens, dinnerware, and candles, all of which cost money. Picking a venue that is pre-decorated can help lower costs. If you’re looking to lower the costs of your flowers, be sure to use those that are in-season year round.

Live Music

When we think of weddings, one of the first things that pop into our minds is the “Here Comes the Bride” song, a standard in nearly every wedding. However, live music during a wedding can pose a significant cost burden. Many brides find themselves spending $2,000-$4,000 on a professional band. If you’re looking to cut costs, you can often find a local DJ willing to play at a wedding for $1,000 or less.


We use our wedding photos to remember the day we made a lifetime commitment to our partner. Most couples planning a wedding choose to opt-in for a professional photographer to take pictures of the wedding ceremony and pictures of the bride and groom.

The national average for a wedding photographer ranges from $2,000 to $3,000. (1) Having your photographer be present at the bridal shower, the rehearsal dinner, and the bachelor party can also cost extra. These costs may not include any editing work that a photographer may perform.

Rings and Attire

There is no question that one of the largest expenses associated with holy matrimony is the ring. Not only are you expected to shell out massive sums of money on an engagement ring, but also a wedding ring for after the ceremony takes place. According to recent surveys, the average American couple spends $6,000 on an engagement ring. (2)

In order to trim costs, many couples are opting in to just purchase 1 ring each, to serve as both the wedding ring and engagement ring. It is also now advised to avoid the “Two Month Rule”, the once-popular rule that stated a ring should cost two months of your income. Another cost saving tip is to have a jeweler use the engagement ring to build a new wedding ring, which can also allow your partner to always have their wedding and engagement ring in one wearable piece.

Alongside wedding and engagement rings comes the attire. The sky can be the limit when it comes to the costs of a bride and groom’s wedding day outfit. Studies have found that the average bride keeps the cost of her dress below $1,500.

You and your significant other will also need to consider the costs of bridesmaids and groomsmen outfits. Often times, the couple will cover the expenses associated with preparing the bridesmaids and groomsmen’s outfits. Renting these outfits can help to lower the burden of these costs. (1)

Final Note

Your wedding day serves as one of the most important days of your life. Done properly, a well-planned wedding can help bring years of positive memories while re-enforcing the reasons as to why you fell in love. However, this does not mean consumers should go on a spending binge when it comes to their wedding. Start your search online today to search for ways to lower the costs associated with your wedding.

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  1. https://www.quicken.com/biggest-expenses-consider-when-planning-wedding
  2. https://www.creditdonkey.com/spend-engagement-ring.html

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