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Stephanie Jade

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April 19, 2019

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Who Pays For What For The Wedding

Who Pays For What?

Ah, yes. The big question. The concept of deciding who pays for what for the wedding can seem intimidating and perhaps a bit awkward for some couples. But don’t worry, there’s actually more than one way to go when deciding how to divvy out the payments!

Creating A Budget

No matter which way you choose to go with payments, it’s always a great idea to decide your wedding budget before you begin making any purchases or asking for any financial assistance. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by this task, or are unsure on what an appropriate wedding budget is these days, I have some answers for you to check out right here. Once you have your budget decided, you might find yourself needing a little extra help keeping track of your spending. Thats normal, just take a deep breath and remember that all of this planning is leading you to the happiest day of your life!

Traditional Take on Who Pays For What

One choice you have is to take the traditional route of the Bride’s side paying for specific parts of the wedding, and the Groom’s side paying for the other things. This is probably what you’re most familiar with, and honestly, it’s probably what you have the most questions about. SOO, traditionally speaking…

The Bride pays for: 

  • The Reception and all that it entails. (Food, Cake, Music, Venue, decor, etc.) 
  • The Ceremony (decor, venue)
  • Travel for her peeps. (It’s optional for the bride to pay for out of town guest’s traveling fees to the wedding).  This also includes travel to the ceremony and reception as well. 
  • Bridesmaids dresses and gifts
  • Invitations, programs, announcements,
  • Photography
  • Groom’s ring
  • Flowers
  • Hair, makeup
  • Favors
  • Wedding planner

The Groom Pays for:

Rehearsal dinner

Groomsmen ties

Bride’s bouquet

Travel for his peeps


Bride’s ring

Marriage license


Corsages for mom and grandmothers

Split it Three Ways

Another option is to split the wedding costs three ways. This means that the bride’s family pays for 1/3 of the wedding, the groom’s family pays for 1/3 of the wedding, and the couple pays for 1/3 of the wedding. This is a great option but would require a little more planning and organizing. You would need to stay set in your budget so each party could plan out the appropriate 1/3 of costs correctly. You would also have to decide if each party will pay for 1/3 of each purchase, or if you would still assign certain purchases to certain parties (The bride’s family will pay for catering, the groom’s family will pay for the venue, and the couple will pay for all decor and music).

Split it Four Ways

Splitting it four ways is a great option for couples who have have step parents. This way involves the individual’s parent to pay for 1/4 and their step parent to pay 1/4 of the wedding.

If both partners have step parents, they would split it evenly 4 ways. If however one partner’s parents are married, they can pay the other 1/2 or stick to 1/4. (If they decide to pay 1/4 and not 1/2, each parent/set of parents pays for 1/4 and the couple  pays the other 1/4).


Couple Pays For All / Makes Up The Difference

This option is pretty self explanatory, the couple pays for all of their own wedding! This is great for couples who are more financially set and capable of affording their wedding on their own. If couple’s would like financial assistance, but aren’t sure how much their parent’s will be able to contribute, they can tell their parent’s their budget and ask if they would be willing to contribute towards any of it. Then, the couple would make up the difference in costs themselves.


Some couples ask how much their parents would be willing to contribute and then make their budget based off of that amount.

Don’t be afraid to bend or tweak any of these options in order to make a payment plan that works best for you and your family!


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