Here Comes the Bride – 13k of them!

bridesThere were 13,960 weddings in the PDX metro area in 2012.* That’s a wow of vows! Since June is the official kick-off of wedding season, I thought I’d share a few numbers on what is being spent on nuptials. You don’t need to see the charts to guess the number one expense: food. There’s no shortage of ways to spend the bucks for reception menus. Based on the average size reception of 140 guests; simple, appetizers only average about $4k with full dinners going upwards of $10k. Tack on the bar, the cake and the rehearsal dinner and you can see how the dollars add up. After how it tastes, brides care about how it looks. Diamonds truly do appear to be a girl’s best friend. No. 2: the engagement ring (wedding band is extra). Average starting price was $3k with higher end bling going for upwards of $9k. Reception venue came in at No. 3 with a price tag average of $2500 up to $6k depending on location and package. The wedding dress and photographer round out the top five expenses.

So, is anything going DOWN in spending? Well, music for one. Only 25% of couples now choose to use a live band resulting in a savings of between $1500 to $3k. DJ’s provide favorite tunes starting at less than half of that. And it’s not in the report, but I know more brides are on the DIY track opting to be creative with invites, favors and decor. My take on all of this? I’ve yet to hear a bride say “I wish we had spent more money on our wedding.” And how many times does this come up in conversation? “That basil chicken rice pilaf at Jan’s wedding was the best I’ve ever had!” Enjoy your day but spend wisely. It doesn’t take a bank roll to create magic.  Speaking of curbing expenses, watch here for announcement on NEW package deals for savvy brides.

*Source for numbers: Proprietary Surveys; The Wedding Report Inc.2013
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