New vs Old Wedding Etiquette: Who Pays for What?
These days, the rules of who pays for what when it comes to a wedding are a little more in the grey area than in years past…for quick and easy reference, we have provided a short and sweet list of new wedding etiquette so you know what to expect from whom!
Old Wedding Etiquette Rules: Wedding and reception expenses for a first marriage were traditionally the sole responsibility of the bride’s family. When paying, they get to determine the size and style of the wedding and reception. The groom’s family my offer to share in the cost of the reception, and the bride’s family may accept in order to accommodate a larger wedding.
New Wedding Etiquette Rules: Both families may divide the expenses as their budget allows, or each family can contribute a set amount to the total expenses. This may be supplemented by the bride and groom. As the average age of couples rises for marriage, many working duos today host and pay for their entire wedding and celebration themselves, and issue the invitation for their personalized wedding on their own. For encore weddings, the couple is always responsible for the costs.
The Bride’s Family Pays for:
- Church and reception site rental
- Cake, catering and beverages for the reception
- Invitations, announcements and stationary
- Services of a wedding consultant
- The bridal attire and trousseau
- Photography for the engagements, bridal portraits, ceremony and reception
- Flowers for the church, reception and the bridesmaids
- Corsages for special helpers
- Music at the ceremony and reception
- Limousine for the bride and family to the church, and cars for transportation
- Lodging for out-of-town bridesmaids or arrangements with friends
- Security and insurance
- Wedding favors
The Groom or His Family Pay for:
- The bride’s engagement and wedding rings
- Marriage license
- Officiant’s fee and travel expenses
- Bride’s bouquet and going-away corsage
- Corsages for the mothers and grandmothers
- Boutonnieres, gloves and ties for the men of the wedding party
- Wedding gift for the bride
- Limousine expense leaving reception — or for the day
- Wedding night accommodations
- Honeymoon trip
- Gifts for the best man and groomsmen
- Shipment of the wedding gifts to the couple’s home or arrangements for out-of-town groomsmen
- Rehearsal dinner
- Groom’s wedding ring
- Groom’s gift
- Gifts for the bride’s attendants
- Thank you gift for parents
- Bridesmaid’s luncheon (optional event)
- Engagement parties may be hosted by each set of parents or friends
- Groom’s family or engaged couple may co-host or host the entire wedding event
- The groom’s family or friends usually give the bachelor dinner or party
Who pays for what for a wedding might be just the first of many questions that come up when planning your day. Peruse our BLOG for other advice columns, and of course, lots of inspirational eye-candy!
If you are getting married in NC, we’d also love for you to check out our Preferred Vendors. SB&G has been the trusted wedding planning resource for our region for 30 years and has the most extensive VENUE GUIDE spanning from the NC Triad, across the Greater Triangle and to the Coast. Our region has great options for DESTINATION WEDDINGS too!