Bridal dresses

It’s hard to be a Recessionista Bride: The High Cost of Weddings

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Wedding Dresses

Wedding Dresses

It’s hard to get married on a recessionista budget. A wedding, with all the necessary components, like a great dress, a reception, venue rental and flowers is expensive. The average wedding costs over 28k with some costing far more than that.  Now a new study from My Glass Slipper,  a wedding shoe retailer,  details how wedding costs vary across the United States.   The research shows exactly how costs differ for weddings across the United States with weddings in the US being more expensive along the east coast.  A Northeastern wedding, for example, has the biggest big day budget with nearly the smallest guest list. The South throws an average of 813,328 weddings per year – more than any other region – but the Northeast spends over $5,000 more per wedding.  

Wedding costs

My Glass Slippers’ Infographic on Wedding Costs

The Northeast (east coast)  spends the most per wedding but overall has fewer weddings per year, invites the least amount of people, and has fewer wedding businesses than the other regions. The South, however, has the most weddings per year with almost the cheapest expense but the biggest market value and a ton of wedding businesses dedicated to making these big days even bigger.

With wedding costs varying some much by state or region, a good savings tip is to look at our wedding region, not just venue, with an eye towards saving. So if the bride is from New York City but the Groom is from Montgomery,  Alabama, guess where it might be better to plan the wedding? Right, in the south in Alabama.   It turns out that the Southern states are  a great place to look at getting married from a cost perspective, for many reasons.  With more weddings taking place in the US South every year (813, 328)  than anywhere else in the US, the South  makes for a cost-effective wedding location.   In the South where the average wedding cost is 24k,   a bride just  might get better service, more attention, and than say if she choose to marry on the East Coast.

Renting a wedding dress for the big day or buying one that was pre-owned/pre-loved is another great way to reap the savings.  Asking friends and family to help cater your reception is another great way to save money.

Are any of you about to tie the knot? If so, check out the wedding sweepstakes running now via Pinterest from hair care company Schwarzkopf Professional.   This giveaway offers brides to be a chance to win a bridal dress, hair and make-up valued at other 10k.  There’s no better way to reduce your wedding costs than by winning free stuff!



Since 2008, Mary Hall has been the author of The Recessionista Blog, which is read by thousands of regular readers in over 160 countries. An internationally recognized expert on the art of the living the good life for less, she has been a commentator on local, national, and international radio and TV shows. Her advice has been featured in over 2,000 media outlets, including The New York Times, Reuters, Life & Style magazine, ABC News, NBC News and now The Huffington Post, among many others.

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