By Ryan Velez
Weddings are likely one of the most expensive days that a family will ever have, despite the fact that it is supposed to be a happy occasion. While many understand the price involved, one may be surprised that even accepting an invitation can be an expensive endeavor. Black Enterprise breaks down the costs for all involved parties.
Wedding site TheKnot.com explains that weddings cost an average of over $35,000 last year, but it is another survey from LendEDU that shows how pricey wedding attendance can be. LendEDU published the results of a recent poll it commissioned of 1,000 Americans who attended a wedding in 2017. Here are some of their major findings:
• The average wedding attendee spends about $1,386 per wedding. Multiply that by three to five weddings a year, and wedding attendance can take a serious bite out of your budget.
• Within that expenditure, about $529 goes toward travel (including plane tickets, gas, hotel room), about $329 goes toward the wedding gift, nearly $224 goes toward clothing (a suit or dress, dry cleaning), and about $304 goes toward miscellaneous expenses.
• A third of respondents said they purchase a wedding gift off the registry, 32% said they either give cash or check, while 3% said they do not give a gift.
Here are some tips from Black Enterprise to keep the price of your wedding attendance low:
• Budget for gifts in your annual household spending plan, for weddings, as well as holidays and other occasions. Consider who is likely to get married in the coming year, and which weddings you’ll want to attend, and then save, budget, and plan accordingly.
• Don’t give in to social or familial pressure to attend every wedding you are invited to (especially destination weddings, which may include travel, lodging, and other costs that fall outside of your budget). Save by attending only those most important to you, and sending an affordable gift or just a nice card of congratulations for the others.
• Don’t get caught up in competition with family members or other attendees to buy the most impressive gift. Don’t give anything, including cash, that is more than what you budgeted for.
For many millennials, the time is coming where many friends and loved ones are considering tying the knot, meaning that there may be a lot of weddings to attend to. This is a great time to share in a wonderful milestone—just be wary that this doesn’t come with too large a bill.