Who Pays for What in a Wedding

Picture this scenario ladies: It's 3000 b.c. and your family has decided that you will marry Lord So-and-Such from a neighboring village. You haven't met this man, but you hear from the townsfolk that he's mildly handsome and has plentiful farm land and lots of animals that will provide you with all the support you need. Now picture your father offering this man some of your family's cows, land, or jewelry in order to make the union between your families more appealing. It all sounds like such a whirlwind of enchanted romance!

Who Pays


Or not. Luckily, we don't live in the old days anymore. We are no longer tasked with securing our family name's future and livelihood through marriage. Now, we are free to fall in love with whomever our heart desires. There are, however, some modern financial customs that stem from these ancient dowry dealings. The following is a rough guide to the traditional rules that most modern families adhere to when paying for the various costs of a wedding. Of course, you may have your own take on things, so let this serve as a general outline of information you can turn to if you are lost in a quagmire of financial decisions:

The Bride's Family:

Traditionally, the bride's family is going to cover most of the total wedding bill. These costs include, but are not limited to: - Engagement party - Wedding planner or coordinator - Bridal party transportation to wedding - Vendors - Gifts for the couple - Reception costs, including food, music, decorations, rental fees and entertainment - Ceremony costs including rental fees, decorations - Flowers for ceremony and reception - The bride's wedding dress and accessories - Invitations, announcements, programs, and mailing costs - Favors - Photography - Their own attire and travel expenses

Bride and Father


The Groom's Family:

Ladies, this is where your man's family comes in to take some of that pressure off your family's plate. It will also probably keep your father from having a nervous breakdown: -Rehearsal dinner -Alcohol at the reception (optional) -Their own wedding wear -Gifts for the couple


Groom and Family

But don't think you and your guy are getting off scot-free! You are both responsible for a few small, yet very important expenses for the big day:


- The groom's ring - The groom's wedding gift - Bridal part luncheon - Gifts for the bridesmaids


- The bride's engagement ring - The bride's wedding ring - The bride's wedding gift - Boutonnieres and corsages for the wedding party - The officiant's fee - The honeymoon - The marriage license

Bride and Groom

Did you notice how the groom's family list was significantly shorter than the bride's family list? This is most likely due to those ancient dowry customs we were talking about before. But, due to ever-changing, ever-evolving hearts and minds of the modern 21st century couple, these customs are becoming less and less revered. If both of your families have a different take on things, then more power to you all! Happy planning brides! How are you budgeting YOUR wedding? Let us know in the comment section below!

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