How Much does a Wedding Cost?

How Much does a Wedding Cost?

Wedding planning can be quite overwhelming. Let’s face it – the road to forever isn’t a cheap one. In fact, the average wedding cost in North America is around $30,000.

The bulk of your budget is spent on the reception venue and catering, while the rest goes on equally essential expenditures like hair and makeup, decorations, and photography.

Tying the knot is an expensive milestone for any couple. So, to help you grasp of the true cost of a wedding, let’s break down the latest trends and average expenses. Hopefully, this will give you an idea of how much you need to pay for the wedding and where you can cut costs.

Quick Read:

Wedding trends are one of the many factors that affect the average price tag of a Canadian wedding. Listed below are some of the most recent trends to look out for:

Non-traditional ceremonies

As stated in The Knot’s annual Real Weddings Study, formal weddings aren’t as popular as they used to be. Last year, couples veered away from banquet halls and hotels and embraced outdoor ceremonies. Couples opted for non-traditional venues like barns, wineries, beaches and museums.

To cut costs, maybe you’ll opt for a quaint ceremony in your backyard. If you’re lucky enough to live on a farm, then you simply need to clean up that barn, and you have a venue for your wedding.

But, for city dwellers, this just isn’t an option. The most convenient way to search for the perfect venue to fit your budget is through a comparison service like Here, you’ll find the ideal venue for your needs.

Incredible guest experience

Weddings these days are all about providing the best guest experience. About 72% of couples emphasize how crucial it was for them to create memorable experiences for their guests. That explains why expenditures for entertainment tripled last year.

Popular forms of entertainment include photo booths, sparklers, games, and musical performances, among other fun activities.

Mobile wedding planning

Wedding planning has gone increasingly mobile. More than 90% of couples in 2017 planned their special day via their smartphones. About 65% of brides looked up wedding gowns online, 54% searched for wedding vendors, 48% made use of online tools, 31% came up with a personalized website for the big day, and 28% used an online RSVP service.

Leveraging technology for wedding planning can certainly help you reduce costs. For instance, you can send digital invites to friends and family, and you can utilize an online RSVP system.

Average wedding costs

How much are you willing to spend on your wedding? Using the average wedding budget breakdown, identify the areas where you make small savings to help you move closer to the wedding of your dreams. You can even use TFSAs to save for your wedding.

  • Attire: Brides-to-be spend an average of $1,509 on their wedding dress. Meanwhile, grooms spend around $286 for their wedding attire and accessories.
  • Cake: Depending on your preference, the cake can be a multi-tiered, intricately designed piece that will cost way more than the average birthday cake. These cakes cost an average of $540.
  • Catering: The total cost for catering will ultimately depend on your guest list. If you plan to have 200 guests at your wedding, you may have to spend as much as $14,000 on catering. The average cost per person is $70.
  • Entertainment: The guest count decreased to 136, from 149 in 2009. But the cost per wedding guest has increased from $194 in 2009, to $268 currently. This is due to the growing need to provide guests with a personalized and unique wedding experience. Couples are spending more than ever on entertainment to ensure that guests find the occasion memorable. The Knot says reception bands cost around $4,000, which is nearly four times more than hiring a DJ. Ceremony musicians, on the other hand, may cost around $700.
  • Florist: Flowers and other decorations will now cost roughly $2,300. That’s nearly $200 less than last year’s average. To further reduce your expenses, choose cheaper alternatives like silk flowers instead of real ones. They will look just as beautiful. You can also opt for DIY crafts instead of buying pre-made wedding centrepieces.
  • Invitations: The average cost of wedding invitations is $408. But if you use digital invites, you can easily cut your budget for invitations in half. Of course, there will always be family members who aren’t tech-savvy and who will probably never find that electronic invite unless you teach them how to access it.
  • Photography and Video: Preserving those precious memories won’t come cheap. Couples are spending about $2,630 on photographers, and as much as $1,912 on videographers.
  • Transportation: The average price for transportation is $830. Ultimately, it will depend on the car or cars that the couple choose for their wedding.
  • Reception venue: The average cost for the wedding venue in 2017 was $15,163. If you want to spend less, maybe you opt for a non-traditional wedding.
  • Wedding planner – Despite advances in technology, nothing beats having a wedding planner to talk to and help ease pre-wedding stress. Hiring a wedding planner should cost around $1,988.

Don’t let the numbers faze you, though. Making your ideal wedding fit your budget is challenging, but not impossible. We’ll help you find the best possible rates and the right vendors to work with your vision and turn it into reality.