Your son or daughter is getting married, what expenses are you responsible for and what expenses are the fiance's/fiancee's family responsible for?

In the last half a century, traditional expenses each set of parents are responsible for haven't changed all that much. What has changed are the add-ons, how big and elaborate the wedding and the gifts, pre-trips and pre-parties for the bridesmen and groomsmen.

There are no set rules as to what expenses the parents of a son or daughter absolutely must pay. Some families may not have the means to cover the costs of a wedding. In that case, the two families would have to come together and decide who's paying for what and how much will be spent.

On the other hand, if both families are willing to pay their fair share of wedding costs and the split is that of a traditional ceremony, the first step might be setting a budget and trying to stay within that budget. Let's give you the breakdown of a traditional wedding in 2022. Who pays for what?

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Responsibilities/Expenses of the Bride

Groom's wedding band

All gifts for the bridesmaids, groom and parents

Hair and makeup for parents (both his and hers), bridesmaids and groomsmen

Responsibilities/Expenses of the Groom

Bride's engagement ring and wedding

His own attire

All gifts for the groomsmen and bride

Honeymoon (This is an expense that differs from one wedding to the next. In modern times, more often than not, the groom will cover the cost of the honeymoon. But is not uncommon for the groom's parents to cover this expense.

Responsibilities/Expenses of the Bride's Parents or Family

Wedding planner

Engagement party

Wedding dress







Wedding cake

Brunch (If there is a brunch planned the next day)

Transportation for the bridesmaids

Accommodation for the bridesmaids

Responsibilities/Expenses of the Groom's Parents or Family

Marriage license

Fees for minister, priest or officiant

Rehearsal dinner

Boutonnieres, corsages and the bride's bouquet

Transportation for all groomsmen

Music/Entertainment (DJ and/or Band) and all alcohol served at the wedding reception

Wedding costs can get out of hand if you let them. The list of who's invited can become unmanageable if you let it. Where the celebration is held can be more elaborate than need be.

Remember the reason for all of it and you'll be okay. It's the love of two people, a love strong enough for each of them to come together as one...forever. That's the main reason for all the pomp and circumstance. Oh, and the reception is not for the bride and groom or their families...the reception is a party for the wedding party and the guests in attendance.

One more thing, make sure the bride and groom really want the wedding...and not just a party.


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