Who Should Be Paying for the Wedding?
Back in the day, it was assumed and expected that the bride’s parents would cover a significant portion of the wedding celebration. Fortunately, customs and traditions have changed for good. Today, while the bride’s parents can choose to take the onus on themselves and the groom’s parents also often voluntarily step up to make contributions; most couples volunteer to cover a significant portion of the wedding cost. This is especially done if the families involved are considering taking wedding loans.
In this day and age, wedding contributions are not adjudged based solely on traditions and customs. It’s also based on willingness and a family’s ability to pay. However, an understanding of the traditional wedding breakup makes it easier for everyone involved to take their responsibility in the larger celebration and settle the final tab together. So, here’s who paid for what traditionally.
Back in the day, engagement parties were organised by brides’ father to announce the wedding to family friends and guests. These parties were also a way to welcome the groom into the family. From sending wedding announcements to arranging decorations, all engagement party-related costs were covered by the bride’s family.
For years, weddings were lavish celebrations that often lasted days: multiple parties were almost a norm. While the bride’s family hosted the engagement party, the groom’s family was considered responsible for organising the rehearsal dinner. Mostly organised before the night of the wedding day, the rehearsal dinner was held to allow the bride and groom to mingle with guests and enjoy themselves. Other than the rehearsal dinner, the bride also enjoyed the bridal shower and bachelorette party, thrown by her friends. Likewise, the groom enjoyed the bachelor party organised by his friends. It was also common for friends and relatives to throw parties and showers to celebrate the couple.
Wedding Ceremony and Reception
In the old days, while the bride’s family covered a significant portion of these main ceremonies, contributions also came in from the groom’s family. The bride’s family covered the cost of the church, the bride’s dress, floral decorations, photography, and wedding band; the groom’s family took care of the marriage license and officiant fee. The groom’s family was also responsible for arranging the bride’s bouquet, corsages and boutonnieres of both the families, as well as the groom’s wedding outfit. The reception dinner was hosted and organised by the bride’s family, with the family covering all costs, including: venue, food, decoration, and music band. The groom’s family, on the other hand, organised the honeymoon and paid for it in entirety.
Aside from the significant costs, weddings also include many miscellaneous costs which add up to the final tab. For instance, transportation costs make a significant portion of the D-day tab. Traditionally, the bride and family covered the transportation cost of the wedding party while each family was responsible for their wedding invitations and programs. The groom’s family was also responsible for arranging accommodation for the groom’s friends. However, according to precedent, the groom’s family has always been responsible for the bride’s ring and the bride and family always buy the groom’s ring.
The Final Word
This may be how things worked traditionally, but when it comes to present-day weddings, the lines around who covers what have blurred over the years. Couples, today, decide along with their families what works for everyone. If you or your parents are planning to take loans to cover the wedding cost, it’s best both families discuss the matter openly before going ahead.
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