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Wedding Expense Etiquette - Expenses Paid by Wedding Party, Guests and Ushers

Updated on April 29, 2009

Expense Etiquette Overview

Figuring out who pays for what in a wedding is often a difficult and somewhat complicated subject to address. Since there are so many people involved in the process of bringing a wedding together, it's important to keep wedding expense etiquette in mind. In this article, we will take a look at what wedding costs are covered by the wedding party (sometimes also called wedding attendants), guests and ushers.

And if you want to know what wedding costs are covered by others involved in the wedding, read the article that answers "Who pays for what?".

Wedding Expenses Traditionally Covered by the Wedding Party / Attendants

The wedding party in this case is defined as the Best Man, Maid or Matron of Honor, Bridesmaids, Groomsmen, flower girl, ring bearer and guest book attendant.

Here is a list of wedding costs customarily paid by the Wedding Party:

  • Gifts for respective newlywed

In other words, groomsmen buy a gift for the groom and bridesmaids buy a gift for the bride (traditionally, but this doesn't have to be the case).

  • Wedding attire costs

The wedding party is expected to cover the costs of their rented (or purchased) wedding outfits, according to tradition. Cumber buns, belts, shoes, ties, etc. all fall under this category.

  • Transportation

This is an understood expense in standard weddings, but this is especially important in destination weddings or weddings that might require longer than usual travel time. Whether traveling by plane, car or other method, those in the wedding party should cover their own travel costs.

  • Wedding Shower or Bachelor Party Costs

The costs associated with the wedding shower should be covered by the bridesmaids. Likewise, the cost of the bachelor party should be paid by the groomsmen.

Wedding Guests Having Fun

Courtesy of http://amandabrycephoto.com/
Courtesy of http://amandabrycephoto.com/

Wedding Expenses Traditionally Covered by the Wedding Guests

Here is a list of wedding costs customarily paid by the Wedding Guests:

  • Gift for the couple

Most people understand this to be the standard, but it's important to note. Try sticking to a gift registry (if one exists) or gifts that have practical use.

  • Transportation

Just as was mentioned earlier, transportation costs are an expected expense. Keep in mind that all wedding guests are typically expected to pay for their own transportation to the wedding, even if it's a destination wedding.

Courtesy of http://amandabrycephoto.com/
Courtesy of http://amandabrycephoto.com/

Wedding Expenses Traditionally Covered by Ushers

Here is a list of wedding costs customarily paid by ushers:

  • Gift to the couple

Again, most people understand this to be the standard, but it's important to note. Try sticking to a gift registry (if they have one) or gifts that have practical use.

  • Transportation

Transportation costs are assumed, however, ushers should also be prepared to pay for transportation to and from a destination wedding, should the couple desire it.

  • Wedding Attire Rental

Similar to the wedding party, ushers are expected to pay for their wedding attire whether it's rented or purchased.

Do you think these expense etiquette trends will change in the next decade?

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How This Trend is Changing

Probably the biggest impact to today's wedding expense etiquette that affects the wedding party, guests and ushers is destination weddings. Destination weddings have drastically increased in popularity, and wedding expense etiquette has had to transform because of it.

The standard is that those attending destination weddings pay their travel expenses, regardless of their role in the wedding. Keep in mind, though, that the newlywed couple is expected to pay for the hotel stay/lodging of the wedding attendants if it's a destination wedding.

Proper Etiquette for Discussing Wedding Expenses

If you are invited to a wedding destination as an usher or a bridal party member, you'll certainly want to know early on who is going to pay for your lodging. Lodging costs could easily be a few hundred dollars a night, especially if the wedding is during peak travel seasons.

According to etiquette rules, it is the responsibility of the bride or groom to bring up the topic of who pays for lodging expenses. Bringing the topic up before they do is seen as tacky and can sometimes lead to damaged relationships. If the topic isn't brought up, you should expect to pay for lodging expenses without help from the bride or groom.

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    • profile image

      Wedding Songs 7 years ago

      Thanks!! :-)

    • WeddingConsultant profile image
      Author

      WeddingConsultant 7 years ago from DC Metro Area

      cyoung35- that's what I'm hoping :)

    • cyoung35 profile image

      Chad Young 7 years ago from Corona, CA

      This is great info because I think most people feel like they should pay for everything in the wedding and aren't sure the reaction they may get if they make the bridesmaids and groomsmen pay for their own attire. This will help a lot of people and make it less stressful while planning their weddings.

    • Raven King profile image

      Raven King 8 years ago from Cabin Fever

      Thanks. :)

    • WeddingConsultant profile image
      Author

      WeddingConsultant 8 years ago from DC Metro Area

      Only the best for you, Raven King :)

    • Raven King profile image

      Raven King 8 years ago from Cabin Fever

      Nice photos. Good informative hub. :)