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Wedding Cancellation Insurance – Protecting Your Big Day

Updated on November 14, 2010

Your Wedding is one of the most important days of your life. The average cost of this special day is around $20,000. As you have taken the time to plan for just about everything,  taking out wedding cancellation insurance will also protecting yourself against the unexpected.

What Wedding Cancellation Insurance Doesn’t Cover

Wedding Cancellation insurance will cover the cost of any vendors or services that you have paid for should an unavoidable event occur that results in the cancellation of all or part of your wedding. It is important to note that a runaway bride or groom will not be covered by these policies so you are going to have to use other measures to keep your future spouse in check. 

The typical wedding will comfortably reach several thousand dollars and often this amount is spent in the deposits for things like the venue and service providers alone. These costs are further compounded if you intend to get married abroad, so it makes perfect sense that you want to be covered in case something happens to disrupt the event that you didn’t expect.

Wedding Cancellation Insurance
Wedding Cancellation Insurance

Which Cancellations are Covered?

Though cold feet are not included, Insurance for cancellations can be purchased to cover the following;

Vendor Cancellations

This can cover money from any deposit and other associated costs that are lost because a service that you have booked from one of your vendors is not used. It can include costs from your Accommodation, Transportation, Florist, Caterer, Photographer etc. Many cancellations can happen at outdoor weddings where the weather interrupts the vendor from providing the services they were paid for.

Loss or Damage

Your insurance may also include provisions to protect you against any loss or damage items that are integral to your wedding including loss or damage to your wedding clothing or even insurance for wedding rings themselves. Further from this some policies will also cover the cost of your wedding gifts should they be damaged or lost to theft.

Photo and Video

Should anything like extra photographs need to be taken or redone then your insurance can cover you for these extras and any other non refundable amounts that there were provisions for in your contract. This also includes the reprinting of photos or video should something happen at the lab.

Illness and Death.

In extremely unfortunate circumstances your wedding may need to be cancelled or postponed if illness or death should befall a member of the bridal party. The insurance will protect you against these absences and additional absences below.

Shutdown of Commercial Transportation

Your insurance will cover the cost of an absence to a member of your bridal party should they not be able to attend the wedding owing to a shutdown in commercial transportation leaving them no way to reach the wedding. Also more specifically referred to as travel cancellation insurance, This could include cover for something like a strike from the aviation authority or a natural disaster like a volcano. Do note that the insurance will not cover those that cannot travel because of a pre-existing medical condition. Cover can also be purchased for holiday cancellation insurance should something stop you fro going on your honeymoon.

Military Service

Should a member of the Bridal Party who is part of the armed services be called upon unexpectedly for a military posting during the scheduled time of the wedding, then the costs of the ceremony can be reimbursed.

You Will Need More Than Just Cancellation Insurance.

Although you have protected yourself against any cancellations there is still something that all wedding insurance policies should include. Personal and Public Liability Insurance.

Liability Insurance

This type of insurance is often overlooked when it comes to weddings and other personal events however it is just as likely if not more so to be needed along with cancellation insurance. A personal liability policy will cover the bride and groom from a liability standpoint whereas a Public liability policy will extend over all of the guests and vendors at the wedding.

Some form of liability insurance is necessary in most venues particularly if it is quite old or has some historical significance you may also be requires to take out contents insurance. The minimum insured amount for some of these venues can be in the millions and you will not be granted access to the venue without the proper liability cover.

Your own previous experience at weddings will attest to what can go wrong when everyone is celebrating and has access to an open bar. And even if you are having an alcohol free wedding injuries can still happen. Unfortunately you being the host means that you will likely be named on any personal injury claim that is made by one of your guests even if it is the fault of the vendor. In this case your insurance will cover any payout amount and deal with the vendors insurance directly.

Vendor Contracts.

Dealing with your vendors and reading the fine print is an integral part of insuring that you are appropriately covered on your wedding day. You should be looking for a Hold Harmless clause in your contracts meaning that you will be indemnified from any responsibility should the accident be caused by the vendor. You will likely sign a similar notice that covers the vendor for anything that you are responsible for. Even the smallest vendor should carry self employed or small business public liability insurance

Many wedding vendors will advise against using a friend or relative as one of your vendors e.g. your uncle is a photographer or caterer etc specifically because there can be additional complications involving your own liability. You could be paying for something that isn’t your fault but something which you can be made legally responsible for. For this reason you should only deal with licensed and insured vendors. An accredited vendor will have commercial general liability insurance to cover against personal injury claims on top of other specific types of insurances relevant to their field.

Wedding Cancellation Insurance
Wedding Cancellation Insurance

How Much Does it Cost ?

Wedding cancellation is quite cheap particularly when you consider the other things that you are paying for. You can get basic cover for as little as $100 and this can insure you for losses of up to $50,000. Your insurance cost will also depend on the vendors that you are using. Typically you can expect to pay anywhere from $100 to $500 for the average wedding and the more experience the insurer has with the respective vendors the cheaper they will be.

Because of the specific nature of insurance it is important to read your policy very carefully to ensure that you are not paying for anything that you don’t need. Some of the cover can border on the ridiculous with policies that include provisions for the caterer or florist being kidnapped so unless you believe they will be held to ransom during your wedding you may want to go without this particular cover.

Bearing in mind all the costs of your wedding it makes sense to take the time to compare different insurers and a good place to start will also be to compare quotes online with recommendations from event cancellation insurance companies that your vendors use to insure themselves.


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