Who Pays For What – Wedding

by Claire Valenty on January 26, 2010

in Wedding Etiquette

wedding who pays etiquette

Wedding cost etiquette is a very sensitive and touchy subject and through the years, as people marry later in life, who pays for what – wedding-style has changed from being mostly the responsibility of the parents of the bride and groom to resting on the shoulders of the bride and groom. Every situation is different, however, in the interest of tradition, here is a little help on handling wedding expense etiquette.

Parents of the Groom Traditionally Pay For
The rehearsal dinner
The groom’s cake

Parents of the Bride Traditionally Pay For
The wedding dress and accessories
The bridesmaids’ bouquets
The grandmothers’ corsages
The ceremony and reception flowers
Any decorating, catering, entertainment and rental costs associated with the wedding and reception
The photographer
The announcements, invitations and programs
The wedding breakfast
The bridal brunch

The Groom Traditionally Pays For
The engagement ring
The bride’s wedding band
The wedding gift for the bride
Gifts for the groomsmen and ushers
The bride’s bouquet
The mothers’ corsages
The groom’s, groomsmen and ushers’ boutonnières
The marriage license
The clergyman fee
Any limousine fees
The honeymoon

The Bride Traditionally Pays For
The groom’s wedding band
The wedding gift for the groom
Gifts for the bridesmaids
The bridesmaid luncheon
Accommodations for out-of-town guests
Hair and make-up for the bridesmaids

The Best Man Traditionally Pays For
The bachelor party (these days, the cost is usually split amongst the attendees)

The Maid of Honor Traditionally Pays For

The bachelorette party (these days, the cost is usually split amongst the attendees)
The wedding shower

The bridesmaids, groomsmen, maid of honor, best man and ushers all pay for their own attire.

Now that you’ve got this all organized, let’s go spend some money!

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Brian Smith June 16, 2011 at 2:08 am

What does the groom’s parents contribute to the wedding and how much typically do they give as a monetary gift to the newlyweds now days.

Edmund July 19, 2011 at 12:02 am

We lived on the other side of the world and met up recently. We got together for dinner for the first time in London after nearly 25 years. My niece has grown admirably and has a wonderful partner. They are getting married and the wedding is in an Oxford historic building in 2 mths time. We got an official invite today. We loved to come but distance, health and children schooling commitments, means we have to miss it.
We have not been to a British wedding, let alone any formal wedding reception in last 25 years.
1. There is no wedding gift registry for us to buy a wedding gift as a non monetary contribution.
2. If we want to contribute a monetary wedding gift, how do we approah the matter. It is kind of crude to explain and ask for a bank account no, don’t you think ? I can go thru her mum ie do a money transfer to her mum’s account as I reckon she will be alright on such matters.
3. Generally, assuming we are fairly reasonable and I do like and wish to help her and her mum, and I appreciate it is kind of taboo topic to some, what is the monetary range that would reflect her mum kindness to me when I was young and new in that country.
Thank you in anticipation

Valerie February 21, 2012 at 9:58 am

Is it okay to ask for the grooms parents to split the cost of feeding dinner to 200 people at the reception? When over half of the guests are their friends and relatives?

Paula October 13, 2014 at 3:23 pm

At some point tradition needs to turn to the engaged couple footing 100% of the bill. It’s not 1875 where people get married at age 16 anymore. Most engaged couples have jobs! To ask the father of the bride to pay for 75% of the wedding is ridiculous. If the parents of the engaged couple offer to pay, that’s one thing. But for it to be expected as “etiquette”- it’s rude and outdated.

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