Wedding Etiquette: Who Pays for What?

Traditionally, the bride’s family assumes the burden of most wedding costs, a custom most likely translated from ancient traditions of providing a dowry to attract a husband. While it is still not custom to ask the groom’s family to pay for any more than what is listed below, modern in-laws often offer to help with more. Whatever the case may be, all parties should start budgeting now for their share of the nuptial fees.

The Bride

* Groom’s wedding ring

* Groom’s wedding gift

* Bridesmaids’ gifts

* Personal stationery


The Bride’s Family

* Invitations

* Services of wedding planner

* Wedding gift for the couple

* Bride’s gown, veil and accessories

* Bride’s family’s attire

* Bride’s trousseau

* Bridesmaids’ luncheon

* Lodging for out-of-town bridesmaids

* Rental of sanctuary or other wedding site

* Fee for services performed by officiant

* Music for ceremony and reception

* Flowers for the ceremony site

* Bridesmaids’ bouquets

* Reception expenses (including the rental fee,catering, wedding cake, bar, music, flowers, decorations, gratuities)

* Engagement and wedding portraits

* Ceremony and reception photography

* Videography

* Transportation for the bridal party on the wedding day

* A traffic officer, if needed for parking


The Bridal Attendants

* Purchase of apparel and all accessories

* Transportation to and from the city where the wedding takes place

* Contribution to gift from all bridesmaids to the bride

* Bridal shower or luncheon


The Groom

* Bride’s engagement and wedding rings

* Bride’s wedding gift

* Gifts for best man and groomsmen

* Groom’s own attire

* Marriage license

* Clergy or judge’s fee

* Bride’s bouquet and her going-away flowers

* Flowers for the mothers and grandmothers

* Boutonnieres for all men in the wedding party

* Groomsmen’s gloves, ties and/or ascots (if not part of the rental)

* Transportation for officiant, groomsmen and groom’s family

* Lodging expenses for officiant, if from out of town


The Groom’s Family

* Lodging for out-of-town groomsmen

* Their own wedding attire

* Their own travel and lodging

* Wedding gift for the couple

* The rehearsal dinner


The Best Man & Groomsmen

* Wedding attire

* Transportation to and from the wedding city

* Contribution to gift from all groom’s attendants to groom

* Individual gift to the couple

* Bachelor party

Featured image: Real Wedding: Michelle + Braden | Jacquelyn Hayward Photography

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