The Truth About “Average” Wedding Prices

The average wedding in 2021 cost $22,500, according to the wedding planning website The Knot. But does that mean you should budget $22,500 for your wedding? Probably not. Do you consider yourself average?

If you are even looking on Instagram for wedding inspirations, you are already not looking at an “average” wedding.

That average cost data comes from a survey of 7,600 couples who had many different types of weddings. Some had inexpensive town hall weddings. Others had destination beach weddings with close friends and family. Some had a seated black tie dinner for 200.  It’s important to remember that any time you see an average price for anything, that means some people spent a lot less than the average and others spent a lot more.

Are You Average?
Here are a few averages in the United States:

  • Real wage: $65,836
  • Home price: $374,90
  • Pair of shoes: $75 (if you’re like us, you might have a few that cost a little more!)
  • New car: $46,000

Are you average? Did your car cost exactly $46,000 or did you earn $65,836 last year? Chances are you have different numbers, so you shouldn’t expect your wedding to be average.

Please don’t take this the wrong way, we just feel it is unfairly misleading when the average cost of a wedding  is published at being $22,500.00. You can certainly have a wedding for $22,500 and live happily ever after.

To be completely transparent, My wedding cost $45,000 I invited 35 of my dearest friends and immediate family to a friend’s private home in the hills of Jamaica. I hired a fabulous band and served a family style dinner with local Island cuisine and had a few flowers adorning the tables.  My biggest indulgence was the band, and flying in my favorite photographer to capture the once-in-a -life time memories. It was not published In Martha Stewart Weddings, VOGUE  or Brides Magazine, but it was certainly one of the best days of my life. Here is a summary of  a beautiful  wedding we just did with 86  Guests:

Venue $7,000
Food $13,742
Beverage $14,362
Flowers $15,194
Wedding Cake $2,395
Band $9,250
Ceremony & Dinner Musicians $3,200
Videographer $4,950
Photographer $9,500
Lighting and AV $2,650
Hair & Makeup $1,560
Rentals $12,950
Invitations $2,200
Day Of Stationary $2,005

Total = $100,958

Certainly not your “average wedding”

It’s also worth noting that the average cost of a pre-pandemic wedding in 2018 was $28,000. Many couples had to scale back, postpone or cancel plans in the years since then. While this brought the average cost down in 2020 and 2021, we do expect that number to increase again.

What Goes Into a Wedding Budget
A variety of factors go into determining your wedding budget, including:

  • The venue you choose and food and drink
  • The number of guests
  • The experience and expertise of your vendors
  • The time of year and time of day you hold your wedding
  • And of course your overall vision

About Vendors Costs
As with wedding planners, there are certainly  less expensive options for photographers, bands, florists, etc. But the ones with the most talent and experience are well worth the investment and are in high demand.  The florists who create centerpieces and bouquets, the caterers cooking and serving spectacular food, the photographers who capture the moments that matter—all of your vendors invest their time and expertise. An experienced wedding planner has a strong network of quality professional wedding vendors.

You’re paying for their creativity, preparation and level of service. A wedding is a once-in-a-lifetime event and the thought, planning and level of service that goes into your day is different. You expect perfection and vendors that deliver, but that comes with a price tag that you must consider in your budget.

Let Us Help You Plan Your Wedding
Your wedding is a once-in-a-lifetime event. An experienced wedding planner helps you make sense of it all. Get in touch so we can help you make your dream a reality.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *