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Traditionally, Who Pays for What?

As a reference, below is a checklist of the traditional expenses and responsibilities of the bride's and groom's families. Keep in mind that these days, all of the following guidelines are variable—depending on the particular circumstances of the wedding. Often, expenses are shared by the couple and thier families, so assign the responsibilities to fit your circumstances.

Traditional Expenses of the Bride and Her Family
  • WP_tipsformom2_WOServices of a wedding consultant
  • Invitations, enclosures, and announcements
  • The bride’s wedding gown and accessories
  • Floral decorations for the ceremony and reception, bridesmaids’ flowers
  • The bride’s bouquet (unless it is customary for the groom to pay for it)
  • Tent, awning, aisle runner
  • Music for church and reception
  • Transportation of bridal party to ceremony and to reception
  • All reception expenses
  • Services of a traffic officer or security, if necessary
  • Photographer, wedding photographs, wedding albums
  • Videographer and finished DVD
  • Transportation and lodging expenses for the officiant if from another town and if invited to officiate by the bride’s family
  • Accommodations for bride's attendants
  • Bridesmaids’ luncheon, if hosted by the bride or her family
  • Bride’s gifts to her attendants
  • Bride’s gift to groom
  • Groom’s wedding ring
Traditional Expenses of the Groom and His Family
  • Bride’s engagement and wedding rings
  • Groom's attire
  • Ties and gloves for the groomsmen, if not part of their clothing rental package
  • Accommodations for the groom’s attendants
  • Accomodations for the groom's parents and siblinds
  • Bachelor dinner, if the groom wishes to give one
  • All costs fo the rehearsal dinner
  • Officiant's fee or donation
  • Transportation and lodging expenses for the officiant, if from another town and if invited to officiate by the groom’s family
  • The marriage license
  • Transportation for the groom and best man to the ceremony
  • The bride’s bouquet (when it is local custom for the groom to pay for it)
  • The bride’s going away corsage, if wearing one
  • Boutonnieres for groom’s attendants
  • Corsages for immediate members of both families (unless the bride has included them in her florist’s order)
  • The officiant’s fee or donation
  • Groom’s gift to bride
  • Gifts for groom’s attendants
  • Honeymoon expenses
Maid of Honor's/Bridesmaids’ Expenses
  • Purchase of apparel and all accessories
  • Transportation to and from the wedding location
  • A contribution to a gift from all the bridesmaids to the bride
  • An individual gift or a group gift from the attendants to the couple (If being in the wedding is not the gift)
  • Optionally, a shower, luncheon, or bachelorette party for the bride
Best Man’s/Groomsmen’s/Ushers’ Expenses
  • Rental or purchase of wedding attire
  • Transportation to and from the wedding location
  • A bachelor dinner, if given by the groom’s attendants
  • A contribution to a gift from all the groomsmen to the groom
  • An individual gift or a group gift from the attendants to the couple (if being in the wedding is not the gift)
Guests’ Expenses
  • Transportation to and from the wedding
  • Lodging expenses and meals
  • Wedding gift