Money Matters: Couples spend record amounts on weddings

June 2, 2017 01:30

At this rate, eloping may become a more attractive option. The average cost of a wedding has topped $35,000, according to the latest survey by The Knot, but the number of guests has dropped. Couples are providing more personalized experiences for guests, but that comes at a cost. Trends include photo booths, fireworks, both a band and a DJ, after-parties following the reception, dessert baristas and special elements like a scotch or bourbon bar. Brides are hiding GoPro cameras in their bouquets to film their walk down the aisle and photographers are using drones to get overhead shots.

As CNN Money explains, the most expensive place to get married in the U.S. is Manhattan, with an average price tag north of $78,000. The least expensive was Arkansas, with budgets averaging just under $20,000. The groom gets away with spending only around $300 for his tuxedo, while the bride spends and average of $1,500 on her dress, with costs soaring from there; makeup and hair styling can cost $200 and up. The Knot's survey puts the cost of photographers and wedding planners over $2,000 each.

To help your readers/listeners/viewers understand the cost of weddings and how they can save money, talk with wedding planners in your area. They can make suggestions about how to stay on budget with everything from the venue (often the most expensive part of the event) to food and flowers. Asking family members or friends to handle some wedding day tasks can also help save on expenses. With some planning, couples can put together a wonderful experience without breaking the bank.

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Stacey Tisdale of Black Enterprise entered the 2016 NEFE/RTDNA awards contest with a story about the financial pitfalls of growing up in racial isolation.