Now That You’re Engaged, Who Pays for What?
How exciting! You got engaged! As enthusiastic as you may be to leap into planning your big day,
the eminent question quickly becomes…who pays for what?
As awkward as the discussion may be, it is best to reach an agreement on such matters
at the beginning stages of your wedding planning process. There is no standard answer to the question
of who foots the bill. However, determining factors largely depend on for what each party
is willing and capable of paying. Perhaps the following list of “who traditionally pays for what”
can be a starting point for your conversation:
The Bride: Groom’s Ring, Bridesmaids’ Gifts, Groom's Gift, A Gift for Her Parents, & Bridesmaid Hair/Makeup
The Bride's Family: Engagement Party, Wedding Planner, Wedding Stationery (Save-the-Date Cards, Invitations, Thank You Cards, Programs), Bridal Gown and accessories, Bridesmaid Bouquets, Ceremony and Reception-Site Rentals, Flowers for Ceremony & Reception, Music for Ceremony & Reception, Food for Reception, Favors, Photographer, Videographer, Wedding Cake, Transportation, & Post-Wedding Brunch
The Groom: - Engagement & Wedding Ring for Bride, Bridal Bouquet, Gift for the Bride, Groomsmen & Usher Gifts, Marriage License, Officiant’s Fee, His formalwear & accessories, Groomsmen Boutonnieres, Groom's Attire and accessories, Honeymoon
The Groom's Family: Rehearsal Dinner, Their Wedding Attire, Wedding Gift, Cocktail Hour & Reception Beverages, Groom's Cake, Groom's Family Out-of-Town Guests Accommodations
The Attendants: Bridal Shower, Bachelor/Bachelorette Parties, Wedding Gifts, Their Own Wedding Day Attire, Their Travel Expenses, Flower girl & ring bearer attire & accessories (their parents pay)
Things to consider:
Whether or not you and your betrothed agree, it is universally presumed that the more
a third-party contributes, the more “say” he/she/they have in the decision-making process.
Number of guests: if one party’s guest list unquestionably outweighs
the other’s, it’s okay to ask them to contribute more.
Your age and season in life: if you’re getting married right out of college, your parents (if financially able)
may offer to contribute a greater amount towards the wedding. However, if you’re over thirty and have a career of your own, you should be capable of financing the majority of the wedding on your own.