30 Rules of Engagement: Who Pays for the Wedding?

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Wedding Money-OCP.org

Today’s modern bride and groom are often breaking the traditions of wedding payments, by splitting the costs themselves, dividing it evenly between the families, paying for the number of guests one side invites and other accepted methods. Traditionally speaking, the bride’s family has always paid for more of the wedding, while the groom’s family is responsible for fewer expenses. The splitting of wedding costs is completely situational, but when you need a frame of reference, here are the 30 rules of engagement-who traditionally pays for what:

Bride and Bride’s Family

1. Groom’s wedding ring and gift
2. Engagement party
3. Wedding planner’s fee
4. Wedding invitations, announcements, and mailing expense
5. Wedding cake
6. Wedding dress, veil, trousseau and other accessories
7. Bridesmaids’ luncheon and gifts
8. Transportation for bridal party to and from ceremony and reception
9. Wedding photographer, photographs and videographer
10. Cost of the ceremony, including location fee, rentals, bridesmaids’ bouquets, corsages, flowers, decorations, music, wedding programs and guest book
11. Cost of the reception, including food, beverages, music, decorations, wedding favors and rice bags

Groom and Groom’s Family

1. Bride’s engagement and wedding rings
2. Groom’s wedding attire
3. Marriage license and officiant’s fee
4. Travel and accommodations for the groom’s family
5. Rehearsal dinner, including location fee, food, beverages and entertainment
6. Transportation for groomsmen and ushers
7. Wedding gifts for the bride, groomsmen and ushers
8. Boutonnieres for ushers, ring bearers and fathers
9. Flowers for the bride’s bouquet, corsages for the mothers and grandmothers
10. Honeymoon


1. Bridesmaids’ dresses, shoes and accessories
2. Travel costs
3. Professional wedding day hair and makeup
4. Bridal shower(s) and wedding gift for couple
5. Bachelorette party given by maid of honor and/or bridesmaids


1. Wedding attire rental
2. Travel costs
3. Wedding gift for couple
4. Bachelor party given by best man and/or groomsmen

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