How Much Does a Wedding Cost?
Updated: Apr 23
If you’re at the beginning of your wedding journey, you're probably wondering just how much your wedding is going to cost. If you’re a little further on through your journey, you’ll understand that this question isn't a straightforward one to answer!
Of course, we can give you an average; but the true answer is ‘however much you want it to cost’ (sorry!). You can spend as little, or splurge as much as you like. Even statistics of spends based on surveys may not reflect the true cost of an average wedding, as couples are not always honest about what they spend on their big day.
Hitched conducted their National Wedding Survey in 2019 (link here) and along with our industry knowledge we've answered some of your most pressing questions below:
Average Total Cost
Brace yourself! The average cost that couples owned up to spending on their big day is £32,000. Although most couples used their savings, one in five admitted to using a credit card to help fund the big day. Half admitted that Bank of Mum and Dad of family contributed to the cost too! We always recommend spending within your means - we promise, no matter what you spend, you'll have the best day of your life.
So, what are the most expensive parts of planning a wedding?
Honeymoon (1 in 3 splurged on a honeymoon and mini moon. Hey, you only do it once, so why not!)
Engagement Ring (of course!)
Many couples admit to feeling the pressure to make their day ‘Instagram worthy’ or have the perfect ‘Pinterest Wedding’, despite the rising trend not to allow any photos to be uploaded on the day. Some people feel that this adds to the pressure, for that first uploaded picture to be show-stopping.
Number of guests
How many guests you decide to invite with inevitably have the biggest impact on how much your wedding costs. Each guest you invite means a larger spend on food, drink and all the other trimmings that some with it, such as chairs, favours, and dancing flip flops! In case you're interested, the average number of guests at weddings last year was 82.
Groomsmen and Bridesmaids
The average number of Bridesmaids and Groomsmen is just 3, which is significantly smaller than we see from our American friends whose photos are often floating around Pinterest. The larger the Bridal party the higher the expense; as well as dresses and suits, there are other expenses that come with a larger Bridal party such as buttonhole flowers, keepsake gifts and other special little bits that make your wedding unique.
The most popular destination was of course the iconic Maldives! 12% of couples admitted to splashing out on the popular honeymoon destination. Where you choose to jet off on your honeymoon will inevitably affect the cost. Jetting to an iconic location that a ‘once in a lifetime’ holiday will always cost more than staying local in Europe.
Oh, and don’t forget about the mini moon! About a third of us also went on a mini moon, either staying local in the UK or going elsewhere in Europe. Of course, adding a mini moon to the agenda will bump up the cost slightly.
Church, venue or registry office?
Choosing the destination of your legal wedding ceremony will make a difference to your overall spend. The average costs are:
Church wedding - £500 Wedding venue - £4,500 Registry office - £50
There are other factors that will vary with location to consider as well, such as flowers, church bells, live ceremony music, and cars to transport from one location to another. All of these are indirect costs associated with there you decide to have your ceremony.
Day of the week
Choosing a weekend day or a bank holiday to get married may seem like the obvious choice, however it’s usually not until couples begin to look into venues that they realise that this can significantly increase the price, and in some cases easily double your budget - particularly if you're considering the summer months.
Consider a Friday for your wedding if you’re looking to reign in some of your costs. Your venues most popular dates are the costliest, so a Friday will find you somewhere in between whilst only asking your guests to take one day off work and endure their post-wedding heads on the Saturday morning. Alternatively, if you want to go with a Saturday, consider an autumn or winter months, which are often a lot cheaper. This can be a great way to get the wedding venue of your dreams at a more affordable price.
There are many more factors other than these that will effect the cost of your wedding. Almost every decision you make about the big day will have a cost implication, these are just some of the main ones to help you get to grips with how the total cost can fluctuate.
If you're looking for guidance on to manage your budget, get in touch and we can help build a realistic breakdown of each aspect of your big day. With years of experience, our team are great at figuring out how best to allocate your budget, to ensure your day is as show-stopping as you've always imagined.