Real Couples Say This is Their Biggest Wedding Expense

It’s safe to say there’s a lot that goes into a wedding. Even the simplest of ceremonies typically consist of a bride in a dress and a groom in a tux, flowers, a post-celebration, and so on. But where does the majority of a couple’s money go? The Knot broke down average expenses in their 2018 Real Weddings Study.

For starters, last year, the national average cost of a wedding was $33,931. That price ultimately depends where a couple lives (New York City’s average was a whopping $96,910 while Idaho’s was $16,366), but for the 14,000+ couples surveyed, the 30K-ish figure rings true.

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Biggest Wedding Expenses

The majority of this figure goes to — you guessed it — the reception venue. Couples spent around $15,000, which makes this expense the biggest of them all.

What follows actually comes way before the wedding: the engagement ring at an average cost of $5,680.

Other top expenses go back to the reception, like a band or DJ, florist, photographer, and catering. But another significant portion of a couple’s budget is dedicated entirely to the bride. The average one spent $1,631 on their dress last year, along with $123 for hair and $102 for makeup. The groom’s wedding day look is definitely more affordable, with the average cost of attire coming in at $283.

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Here’s the total breakdown per The Knot:

  • Reception Venue: $15,439
  • Photographer: $2,679
  • Wedding/Event Planner: $2,002
  • Reception Band: $4,247
  • Reception DJ: $1,292
  • Florist/Décor: $2,411
  • Videographer: $2,021
  • Wedding Dress: $1,631
  • Groom Attire: $283
  • Wedding Cake: $528
  • Ceremony Venue: $2,382
  • Ceremony Musicians: $797
  • Officiant: $286
  • Catering (price per person): $70
  • Transportation: $856
  • Favors: $245
  • Rehearsal Dinner: $1,297
  • Engagement Ring: $5,680
  • Invitations: $386
  • Hairstylist: $123
  • Makeup Artist: $102

What are you spending the most on at your wedding? And what’s your budget? Let us know in the comments section, below!

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