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Your Wedding Budget Checklist: How Much Does a Wedding Cost?

Updated May 2018

Engagement season’s here, and once you’ve said, “Yes!” it’s time to start planning. We’ve put together some tips to make your dream day a little more affordable.

According to (they surveyed nearly 13,000 brides in 2017), the average cost of a wedding in the U.S. is $33,391. For many, this equals the cost of a mortgage down payment or a new car. Costs can be more or less extreme depending on where you live. For those who said “I do” in Manhattan: $76,944. In New Mexico: $17,584.

How much will your wedding cost you? Here are some estimates to help you plan.

The Basics: Average Wedding Budget Costs

  1. Reception Venue: $15,163
  2. Engagement Ring: $5,764
  3. Reception Band: $4,019
  4. Photographer: $2,630
  5. Ceremony Site: $2,311
  6. Wedding Dress: $1,509
  7. Florist/Décor: $2,379
  8. Videographer: $1,912
  9. Wedding/Event Planner: $1,988
  10. Groom’s Attire and Accessories: $286
  11. Rehearsal Dinner: $1,285
  12. Reception DJ: $1,231
  13. Transportation: $830
  14. Ceremony Musicians: $761
  15. Wedding Cake: $540
  16. Invitations: $408
  17. Favors: $252
  18. Catering: $70 per person

How to Save Money on Your Wedding

Of course, you probably don’t want to spend all of your money on your wedding. Consider these cost-saving choices:

  • Shop for your wedding dress at off-the-rack boutiques. Their sample designer dresses often look as good as new, and the prices are significantly less expensive than their custom counterparts.
  • Scour the details of each contract. Identify any items that can be slimmed to make the bill more budget-friendly. Don’t be afraid to ask your photographer to shoot for fewer hours or ask your makeup artist to use standard makeup (versus airbrush). These smaller components add up.
  • Choose in-season flowers to set the mood and save money. Baby’s breath and hydrangeas always look beautiful and are more cost-effective than trendy peonies and dahlias.
  • Guests will respond to the invitation no matter what it looks like. Choose a shape that fits in a standard envelope to save on postage.
  • Rather than a card-and-envelope combo, go with RSVP postcards to save on postage. Even better: Direct guests to RSVP on your website.
  • Your wedding venue doesn’t have to blow the budget. Look for a beautiful backyard or the spacious parlor of a friend’s home for an unexpected, wallet-friendly location.

Your Beautiful Wedding Smile

We know one of the top priorities on your wedding checklist is a straighter, brighter smile for your big day. You’ll look back on your smile in your wedding photos for years to come. The best news for your budget and your cramped wedding calendar: SmileDirectClub invisible aligners can straighten your teeth at home in an average of 6 months, for a total cost of just $1850! You could have your dream smile before you walk down the aisle.

Get started on your wedding day smile today by taking our free, 30-second Smile Assessment.

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