Calculating wedding costs

This entry is from our Expert Guest series where wedding and honeymoon professionals share their best tips on creating memories that last a lifetime.

Getting married can be a substantial investment in your future. As shown by the informative infographic below, the average cost of weddings in the U.S. has risen to $27,698, with the most expensive place to hold a wedding being Manhattan, New York at $86,916. Idaho has the cheapest state average wedding cost at $16,159. How is this money usually spent?

Average cost of weddings infographic

Infographic by JJ Suspenders

Personalizing The Wedding

With 6,200 weddings happening each day in the U.S., the most money is spent on the venue, which averages $11,944 of a wedding budget. Keija Minor, editor-in-chief at Bride’s Magazine, said in a CNBC interview that this can be attributed to couples wanting to personalize their weddings.

A wedding’s personality has become even more important to couples since the rise of social media, according to Minor. She said that social media means that everyone has seen a million weddings, which often inspires couples to stray from cookie cutter ideas.

Although venue is a big investment out of a couple’s wedding budget, a CNN Money report stated that guest lists may be getting shorter. With the price of catering per person averaging $68, cutting back on the guest list is a way for couples to save some money.

Many couples are showing unique style and even paying homage to their heritage by incorporating a variety of events into their wedding celebrations. This can range from tea ceremonies to themed weddings that couples believe reflect their personalities.

Rings add to average costs of weddings

Rings & Things Add to Average Cost of Weddings

Coming in after price of venue at the second highest average cost is the wedding and engagement rings at $4,133. Brides are also spending about $1,351 on their wedding dresses, while grooms are spending an average of $278 on their attire. Style is one of the many ways for couples to showcase their personalities and set the scene for their special day, whether going for a traditional aesthetic or a casual, quirky wedding.

Photography and videography is an average of $2,835; flowers are $1,563; entertainment is $1,389; wedding planners average $827; and couples are spending an average of $555 on cakes. All of these aspects make the wedding industry worth an annual $72 billion, employing over 1.1 million people. They also give couples even more opportunity to let their personalities and individual style color the celebration.

Social media aids wedding planning

Online Aids To Wedding Planning

More couples than ever are turning to their mobile devices for personalized planning solutions. Online services are making it easier for couples to personalize their wedding into the dream day they both have in mind.

The apps allow couples to choose who they want to take videos and photos at their wedding, along with beauty vendors, DJs, and bridal salons. With so many styles to choose from, whether it’s music, hair and makeup, and photographers’ artistic styles, it’s no wonder that couples are paying more to make sure their special day radiates their individuality.

Wedding invitations average $789, and inspiration board sites such as Pinterest make it easy for couples to consider cheaper, DIY options for invites and thank you cards. This option can even help to create a more unique and personal wedding, rather than the traditional weddings of the past.

Personalizing your wedding

Getting Wedding Planning Right

Steib said in a CNBS interview that the majority of brides have not planned a wedding before, which can lead to getting things wrong when estimating the costs of their weddings, he said.

The average bridal age in the U.S. is 25.3, and the average groom age is 26.9. However, studies have shown that parents of the bride and groom are still helping to foot the wedding bill, but modern couples are also contributing to the overall cost.

With the world of wedding inspiration at their fingertips through sites like Pinterest, The Knot, and, couples have endless options and opportunity to create an ideal wedding suited to their individual styles.

Bio: Josh Bluman is the co-founder of JJ Suspenders, based in Vancouver BC. He founded JJ Suspenders, a niche e-commerce website selling high-end suspenders for men, bringing back an authentic fashion style for men with high-qualityso handmade materials.

To give back to the community, $1 out of every sale goes to Beespace, which is a technology incubator for non-profits who seek out independent thinkers and look to find new solutions to make changes.

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