(Closed) Who pays for the wedding? 50/50 anyone?

posted 8 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
2889 posts
Sugar bee

We’r paying for everything ourselves, I think it more matters on what each family can afford and the financial situation of the couple than tradition. We saved up over a long engagement to be able to cover the costs of what we want and are proud to not need to ask anyone for money. However, I know friends who have had offers from either the bride or groom’s family to pay for everything so I don’t think it’s bride wedding groom rehersal anymore.

Post # 4
472 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2010 - Ladder 15 Restaurant

Fi’s parents are not contributing to the wedding at all–not even the rehearsal dinner.  My parents are gifting about 40% of our wedding, and we’re paying for the rest ourselves.  I don’t think it’s unreasonable for the groom’s parents to contribute though, so you should talk to your fi about asking for a little help if you need it.  Perhaps suggest specific things, like “oh we’d really love this photographer/band/drink package (whatever is important to you) but we might need a little help financially.  Is this an expense you might feel comfortable helping us with?”

Good luck!

Post # 5
2641 posts
Sugar bee

My parents paid for about half of mine.  And I basically paid for the other half.  My Dh’s parents paid nothing.  But we didn’t expect them to.  They don’t have money.  If I were to think of most close friends and relatives, I’d say that either the couples paid for the weddings themselves, or the bride’s parents paid for most/all of the wedding.

I think that what the parents contribute is what they feel comfortable contributing these days.  If your Future Mother-In-Law is thinking your parents will be footing the bill, it might be based on tradition.  But it hints to me that she isn’t really prepared to give anything.  I suppose it would be OK for Fiance to ask her if she’d like to contribute.  But other than that I wouldn’t expect it from her.

Post # 6
113 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: November 2011

We are paying for everything ourselves. My parents paid for thier own wedding and so did my older sister.My family have always said that getting married is an adult thing to do and if you want to make the big step in life you will pay for it yourselves. Honestly I think that planning a wedding when you are the only ones paying for it makes your relationship stronger because you have to work together on everything to make it work not only for your budget but for what you want for the day.


Post # 7
524 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2009

I made it clear to my Fiance that if FI’s parents wanted to invite anyone, they had to contribute the same as my parents.  I don’t buy into the sexist bull under the guise of “tradition.”  If they had said that they weren’t helping a dime because their son was the male partner, they’re not coming.  And if my Fiance didn’t back me on that I wouldn’t marry him.  If they couldn’t help because they were poor, obviously I’d understand. 

Even “traditionally” the male side pays for things like the rehearsal, the church, the honeymoon, and alcohol.  That can easily wind up being half the budget.

Fiance and I are paying for 50%, and each set of parents chipped in 25%.  It’s a general fund and we’re all joint hosts of everything.  That way we can achieve a more efficient allocation of resources and there’s no pressure for the rehearsal to one up the reception.

I am so glad all of this drama is over for us.  By far it was the worst time of being engaged.

Post # 8
2702 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2011

That is tradition rarely happens anymore. We’re at a time where most people are paying for some part if not all of the wedding themselves. We are paying for about 70% where our parents are paying the rest (hence the long engagement). I can understand someone who really has no experience in wedding planning to assume that. But times are definitely changing!

Post # 9
1940 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2010

My FI’s parents really aren’t paying anything towards the wedding.  My Future Mother-In-Law is helping to make some of the food for the rehearsal dinner, that’s it.  My parent’s paid about 1/3 of the cost and we are paying the other 2/3rds ourselves.  My FI’s aunt and uncle offered to pay for our flowers right after we got engaged and we recently found out his grandparents want to help with the cake (i.e. pay for a portion of it).  


In my opinion, planning a wedding is a great opportunity for a couple to work together to learn how to budget, save money and decide together how to spend that money.  I actually think it’s a good opportunity to work out any financial issues with your to-be-spouse when you work together and pay for part (or all) of a wedding.

Finally, it is important to remember that a lot of time money comes with strings attached.  The person giving the money feels they have a right to provide input into everything.  Because my FI’s parents aren’t contributing at all, I don’t feel obligated to follow their every wish. 

Your Fiance needs to talk to his parents (probably without you there) to find out if they are wanting to contribute anything, and if so, how (ex. pay for a specific item such as alcohol, or give you a lump sum via check, etc).h

Post # 10
2373 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2008

Things have changed, people contribute what they can or want to. If your parents offer to contribute x and his parents don’t want to contribute anything you work with x amount or add funds with you’re own money.

   It sucks your fiance’s family feels this way- but if it’s the case you’re just going to have to deal and work with the amount your family wants to gift for the wedding (it really is a gift). In their defense, the only reason I can see this practice being acceptable is if they have other children (specifically boys) who have gotten married and they have not contributed. It would be unfair for them to give your fiance money for the wedding and not his brother’s.

    We were in a similar situation when we got married. My in-laws are having financial problems (I’m not sympathetic- they got themselves into this position) and we didn’t expect them to contribute and it wasn’t a big deal. We did however keep their guest list to family and very close friends who actually knew my husband. If the parents want to make the event about their friends/contacts they better be paying for it 🙂

Post # 11
962 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

i think, these days, it depends a lot on the age of the couple getting married and the finacial stability of the parents.  we’re an older couple (41 & 33) and planned on paying for it ourselves (and therefore keeping it very simple).  his parents have since offered to cater it and my family has offered to buy the cake (which we planned on baking ourselves).  neither of us assumed our families would cover anything, but they offered of their own accord.  i think a deep conversation with your FH is in store, and perhaps have him talk to Future In-Laws if you aren’t able to yourself.

Post # 12
1250 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

I think its different for every family.

In the beginning for us, my parents were going to pay for most, and my in-laws were going to help out where needed. It has turned into more of a 50/50 situation at this point though.

My best advice would be to have a frank discussion with both set of parents separately. Find out if they would be willing/able to contribute, and if so, how much. Especially if your parents have different financial situations, it might not be realistic for it to be 50/50. It was very helpful for us to get a specific number from each set of parents so that nobody felt like they were being taken advantage of along the way.

Post # 13
440 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

Because we’ve been living together for almost 3 yrs, my family doesn’t have much money (& lots of drama) we’re paying for the whole wedding ourselves. FI’s parents are giving us $2500 for the rehersal & my mom is helping my pay for my dress.

Post # 14
23 posts
  • Wedding: June 2011

We’re paying for the wedding ourselves. My mom said she’ll take care of the flowers, which we are DIY-ing. I’m hoping my SO’s parent’s will offer to chip in for the photographer but if not, oh well.

Post # 15
4485 posts
Honey bee

Whoever is getting married pays for the wedding. The idea that the bride’s parents pay for the majority is left over from the days when brides were business pawns and weddings were nothing more than business/property arrangements. Most couples have been on their own long enough before they get married that their parents do not need to pay for anything. As an adult (which you must be in order to get married), your parents have no legal authority over you and thus no obligation to pay for your wedding or other bills. Plus, if you pay for the wedding yourselves, you get to make all the decisions. If you allow someone else to pay, you get no say in anything, even though their weddings are already passed by.

Post # 16
128 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

We are paying for the wedding ourselves. Interestingly enough, my parents offered to help but I told them (without Fiance present) that we could afford to pay for it since we have good jobs, and right now due to living circumstances, don’t have to pay a lot of bills. When I told my mom this, she said, “that’s fine but I would expect your Fiance to pay for most of it.” Kinda weird, but that’s because we come from a different country, where the groom/groom’s family pays for the wedding. My mom says she wants to pitch in for my wedding dress though, but otherwise we prefer to pay for everything ourselves.

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